I AM – Devotional style short stories “The Price of a Soul.”

The Price of a Soul

A mid-afternoon walk seems to be what’s on the Man’s mind. He strolls down the tree laden street enjoying the browns, gold’s, yellows, and greens of Fall.

At the end of the street He sees a church and decides to go in and have a chat with the Pastor. It’s the middle of the week so He knows the church will be empty.

Climbing the stairs to the front door He enters and stops. The Narthex has a few comfortable chairs to one side. A buffet table is lined with clip boards for signing up for various activities offered in the church, and their devotional magazine is neatly stacked at one end.

To His right is a long hall and He sees the sign pointing to the pastor’s office. Upon approaching the open door he hears voices.

He stops.

“Well, you know how some of the congregation will feel if I marry you two.” He hears. He knows it’s the pastor.

“Oh, who cares what those holier-than-thou old fuddy duddies think! Gay marriage is now legal so they can just get over it!” A male voice states emphatically.

The Man looks up toward heaven and remains silent outside the door.

“I’m just not sure.” The pastor states.

The Man hears a chair scoot and then something slammed down on the desk. Another voice asks, “How much is your fee? I’ll write you a check right now for whatever you want to marry us!”

“Wellll,” The Pastor leans back in his swivel chair and looks at the two men for a long moment and then leans forward placing his elbows on his desk. “The church could use the extra money.” He leans back in his chair.

“Then you’ll marry us?” One of the men asks hopefully.

“Yes! Why not? That fee will come in handy.” He smiles.

The Man steps back. The two men race out the office door, hooting and hollering and clapping each other on the back and shoulders.

The Man enters the pastor’s office with a scowl on His face. He looks across the pastor’s desk directly into the eyes of the pastor and pointedly asks, “How much is your soul worth today?”

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Ephesians 5:31-“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”

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It is sad to see many of the churches today are compromising the Word of God in order to increase their membership, increase their churches financial gain, or just simply to go with the flow of political correctness. It takes the body of Christ, those with a back bone, to stand before the church boards and demand the true Word of God be adhered to. If the congregation remains silent in these churches, they are condoning the very acts of disobedience that is being done within that church. For a pastor to “marry” a gay couple totally and completely contradicts God’s Word! In Leviticus 18:22 it clearly states that a male shall not lie with another male as with a woman. It is an abomination to God! The same goes for two women engaging in sexual acts together. God created the holy covenant of marriage between one man and one woman and the Lord is very clear on this issue and does not change His opinion! If your church is willingly going against God’s Word, then leave! Go where the true Word of God is taught, preached, and practiced.

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Silly Putty Bible

Silly Putty Bible

image: http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/images/recent/sillyputtymay062016.jpg

News Image BY ALF CENGIA/ZETEO316.COM MAY 06, 2016


Silly putty Bible! No, I’m not being irreverent. The thing about silly putty is that you can twist it any way you like. You are its master, not the other way around. The Bible is often treated in the same fashion – many professing Christians prefer to dictate to it. They don’t want the Bible to intrude into their lives.
John MacArthur hits the bull’s-eye in one sentence when commenting on the contemporary state of Christianity, the world and God’s word. He writes:
The Bible is treated like Silly Putty, pressed and reshaped to suit the shifting interests of popular culture. ~ The Inerrant Word (page 26) (<- affiliate link)
MacArthur states that when he began his ministry nearly half a century ago, he fully expected to deal with assaults on Scripture by skeptics and unbelievers. It’s natural for the unbelievers’ carnal mind to reject the truth and the Bible’s authority (Rom 8:7Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)).
However, from the beginning of his ministry until the present time, MacArthur notes that the most dangerous attacks against God’s word have come from the evangelical community. He lists: “seminary professors, megachurch pastors, charismatic charlatans on television, popular evangelical authors, Christian psychologists, and bloggers on the evangelical fringe.”
I believe the last category is growing and exerting influence among young Christians. Young bloggers emerge from seminary and immediately begin questioning some of the fundamentals of the faith. The word evangelical is also losing its traditional meaning and is long due for revision.
“The shifting interests of popular culture.”
Churches which prioritize culture – dressed up in social justice issues – inevitably leave Scripture behind. A classic example is the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (and many others). It first crossed my radar through ELCA New Testament Professor Barbara Rossing’s materials. It was frustrating to read anything written by Rossing with a Bible in hand.
Her views on the book of Revelation, the denial of the reality of God’s wrath etc, and her commitment to environmentalism, can be explained by an article I found online. It was an in-house discussion centered on the acceptance of the practice of homosexuality. Rossing argued that one should adopt a hermeneutics of diversity when interpreting Scripture.
She called it “faithful diversity.” That’s the silly putty MacArthur referred to.
Another example emerged from a 2005 Lutheran Advent Newsletter. The goal of the newsletter was to promote acceptance of homosexuality. One columnist suggested it was time for Lutherans to close their Bibles for a few months. He asserted that they weren’t going to find the answer to the question there!
Well the answer is there but it wasn’t what they wanted to hear. They didn’t care what could be proven via God’s word. It could be bypassed. The ELCA had already determined to serve the culture and was seeking ways to justify it.
ELCA Pastor Nadia Bolz-Weber takes a different strategy to serving culture. In her book, she wrote the following Bullet Point:
The Bible is not God. The Bible is simply the cradle that holds Christ. Anything in the Bible that does not hold up to the Gospel of Jesus simply does not have the same authority. ~ Pastrix (p 49)
In many cases the definition of the gospel has been infused with social justice issues. Her Bullet point is familiar. Remember anti-Zionist Anglican priest Naim Ateek? He once said:
When confronted with a difficult passage in the Bible or with a perplexing contemporary event, one needs to ask such simple questions as: Does this fit the picture I have of God that Jesus has revealed to me? … If it does, then that passage is valid and authoritative. If not, then I cannot accept its validity or authority.
In one chapter of her book, Bolz-Weber discusses her decision to become a pastor. Under the chapter’s title she has 1 Tim 2:11-12Open in Logos Bible Software (if available). But it’s there as a note of defiance. She doesn’t attempt to debate Paul or seek scriptural approval. What mattered to her was the desire to become a pastor and her parents’ approval.
In another chapter she turns the story of Philip and the Egyptian eunuch upside down (Acts 8:26-40Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)). Suddenly the eunuch represents the lowly LGBTI community sent to teach Philip (us) a life lesson – not the other way around.
This is a practical example of diversity values trumping the expositional teaching of the Bible.
Many U.S. churches are not only embracing homosexuality, they also defend Planned Parenthood. In one spectacular example of circular reasoning a Beliefnet columnist posited that the Bible is silent on abortion. Therefore, she argued, each person, created in God’s image, must exercise moral choice based on that “individual’s dignity and autonomy.”
The Bible is silent on many other things we know are wrong. Yet when clear biblical injunctions against murder and infanticide are raised, a counter-argument is to challenge the status of the unborn child. But, just in case, the article spins the gross lie that abortion is ultimately doing an unwanted baby a favor:
Because we believe in the sanctity of human life that we believe a child has the right to enter the world wanted and loved. Because we believe in the sanctity of human life we are sensitive to the effects of an unwanted pregnancy upon individual women, upon their loved ones and their families, and we recognize that they, not we, must determine what is best for those directly concerned and involved.
Does God have any say?
The serpent couldn’t have turned a better argument (Gen 3:1Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)). It’s not murder because it’s not a baby in one instance: but abortion is morally acceptable, even if it’s a baby, in another instance because it’s better for mother and child in the long run.
Examples like this are almost endless. One popular pastor blogged the following gem:
The truth is, you can completely doubt the accuracy of the bible, and yet be bible-minded to such a degree that Christ is clearly alive in and through you.
This same fellow recently suggested that Jesus was born “intersex.” What would motivate him to preach that?
Just over seventy years ago Wilbur M. Smith wrote a book (Therefore Stand ) warning about was coming. He based it on what had occurred in the past, and what was developing in his day. Smith warned that certain institutions (Humanism etc) and other cultural dynamics were influencing schools, universities and even Christian institutions.
He saw an increasing trend where professing Christian ministers began to deny God’s word. They questioned inerrancy, creation, Christ’s resurrection, sin and future judgment. They treated the Bible as an antiquated book of moral platitudes. Does it sound familiar?
What these self-described Christian leaders have done is dethrone God’s word by enthroning the culture in its place. Instead of identifying in Christ, they embrace their sin natures. There is little to no teaching about holy living and repentance.
Fundamentalist objections to sacred social narratives are treated with contempt. One cannot biblically question abortion, homosexuality or same-sex marriage etc without being classified a homophobe or hater.
One day these slaves to cultural whims will lose the sanctimonious mask they’re hiding behind. The truth is that in departing from Scripture they’ve begun worshiping another god.
But whether one likes it, or chooses to disbelieve it, we’ll all eventually bow the knee to Jesus Christ (Phil 2:9-12Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)).
And it’s far better that we faithfully do it now rather than later.
But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death. Rev 21:8Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)
Applying a silly-putty interpretation to that warning won’t change its Truth.
Originally published at zeteo316.com – reposted with permission

Jesus Cries

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Please excuse me if I misspell a word or make no sense for a split second for the tears streaming down my face are hindering my way. I feel like they are the tears of the Lord Jesus as He watches what is going on in our world.

I cry for the children who are being used as pawns for the evil within hearts of many. The Lord said to bring the children to Him. I am, Lord. I am lifting up these innocent souls for Your care. I pray You put a stop to the madness that we are witnessing here within these United States that You have poured out Your grace on. I pray You forgive them for they know not what they do.

I take that back. They know exactly what they are doing! They are robbing this child of knowing the love and nurturing of a father. He will never feel his loving arms around him or experience the gruff whisper in his ear of his father’s voice or feel whiskers scratch his face as a kiss is planted on his cheek.  He will never hear him laugh with him as he rough houses with him before telling him it’s time to go to sleep. He will never know what it’s like to have Daddy toss him a ball or take him to a ball game or go fishing with Dad. They know exactly what they are doing and they do not care! They are giving You the “finger!” For the enemy has deceived them and turned their hearts to him.

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They know exactly what they are doing and what God calls an abomination they have rallied and won the skirmish. This little girl will never know what her mother’s love truly is. She will never know the special smile of Mama as she twirls in a new dress or to go shopping with that special mother-daughter relationship that only a daughter and mother can have as they try on clothes and giggle at a funny hat they try on. She won’t know the tender kisses of a soft woman’s cheek against hers. She’ll only know the scratchiness of a beard, the smell of a man, not the fragrance of a Mom. There will be no Mom to help her pick out her prom dress or show her how to put make-up on. No Mom to help with wedding plans. No, she will only have the males perspective and we know how that can be. They know exactly what they are doing – spitting in Your face!

 

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We cry, the Lord and I, as children are being ripped apart, limb by limb, MURDERED, for what? MONEY! GREED! I cannot fathom a human being so cold and hard-hearted that being careful not to crush the organs is vital to their evil purposes. Oh my dear God how Satan has taken control of these vile, evil people! How do You stand to see this all happening and not scream and pull your hair out? No wonder You flooded the earth! Maybe You should do it again. The evil is unconscionable. They laugh out loud and scream, “God? I am god!”

http://adflegal.org/planned-parenthood-the-whole-story/

We cry, the Lord and I, at those who are supposed to help, protect, and defend the innocent, instead use their power to throw them back into the violence of abusive homes. We cry at how many children are being sexually abused. I cry because I know their pain and the hopelessness they feel. We cry, the Lord and I, because it isn’t suppose to be this way. We were given children to love and grow, and teach. They throw the victim aside as though tossing rotten meat in the garbage. They know not what they do? Oh YES THEY DO!

https://fbcdn-video-e-a.akamaihd.net/hvideo-ak-xft1/v/t42.1790-2/11795613_10153559986273417_209731026_n.mp4?efg=eyJybHIiOjMwMCwicmxhIjo1MTJ9&rl=300&vabr=40&oh=adffa1d2f02541e2507d8c2af1fa1afd&oe=55C0620D&__gda__=1438668347_5b2048f206fb09f1a6e45edf54838ea8

 

Oh, but the tears fall steadily as we cry, the Lord and I. What is now being taught to the innocent is atrocious. You Lord, created male and female! Now children are being told they are not boys, they are not girls! It gets even worse! What is now being shoved down their young throats isn’t something that a child should ever have to learn. Their minds are too young. Their comprehension not developed. Their understanding not there. Oh how we cry, the Lord and I, at the brainwashing that is taking place within walls that is supposed to educate not manipulate the young minds of the innocent for the perverse actions of grown ups. Children do not need to be taught about oral and anal sex! Nor incest! They know what they do! They are doing it methodically and intentionally! Where is the outcry, Lord!? Why are the teachers and the parents allowing this to be done to the innocent? I want to scream. WAKE UP! I want to scream, STAND UP! I want to scream, TEACHERS REFUSE TO TEACH IT! PARENTS STORM THE SCHOOL BOARDS! JERK YOUR KIDS OUT OF SCHOOL IF NECESSARY!  My God where are their guts?

Oh, Jesus, help us. Wipe my tears, wipe Your tears and come. Let Your presence be known. And have no mercy on the evil that is being perpetrated on Your little ones.

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Are we Christians gutless wonders?

I have been reading a book that has stopped me in my tracks as different issues are being brought out. It has practically caused me headaches in that it has made me think so hard about what we as Christians have allowed to take place in our society.

Even though the book is a novel, parts are backed up with scripture, it has touched on areas that cause me to suck in my breath, stop reading, and meditate on. There are some areas that we as Christians have not only allowed to happen but continue to allow and to grow. It makes me think of the years when I was growing up. How it was so much more simple than what we adults face today and what our children face and will face in the future.

As Christians we are supposed to be Christ followers. Not “religious,” not “pew warmers,” not Easter and Christmas Christians. We are to follow the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ and we are to pass those teachings on to others. Okay, some do. But on a whole do we speak out and stand up for what is right in the eyes of God? I don’t think so!

Before you start screaming at me think about how it was when you were growing up. Particularly if you’re over 50. With our hand over our heart we stood before the American flag and said the Pledge of Allegiance before school classes began. Now, it’s a legal battle to be able to do that in our schools today. Why? Because we did not stand up to those organizations that declared it was wrong!

Think about prayer. Back then we could pray wherever we wanted, whenever we wanted, and as loud as we wanted, and many times others would join in on our prayers. Laws are being passed by the dozens now that we cannot pray in school, Christian groups are being banned from being a school activity, if a prayer group is organized in a nursing home by the elderly the A.C.L.U. is there threatening lawsuits. A child is not allowed to talk or write about their belief in Jesus Christ and many Christmas programs are being cancelled because of the name of Jesus. The old “church versus state” garbage! Read the constitution! We’re being deceived and we’re keeping quiet about it!

Schools have replaced “Merry Christmas” with “Happy Holidays” on their marquis signs. Instead of “Christmas break” its now called “Winter Break.” Nativity scenes aren’t allowed on various properties and stores have become “politically correct” by refraining from displaying “Merry Christmas” or playing Christmas music through their P.A. systems. They say they, “don’t want to offend anyone.” Well folks, they are offending 86% * of Americans!  Why are they getting away with it? Because we Christians have sat back, shut our mouths, and let them!

Pastors are now being threatened and as a result some are toning back on their sermons. They’re afraid of being sued or the government coming after them. I won’t say they are compromising the truth, they are just scared to tell it all. It’s easier to tell people what they want to hear than rattle their cages with a bit of confrontation about their sins.

What about the news media? We have allowed the radio stations, T.V. stations, and newspapers (what’s left of them) to spout the rhetoric of government bull to change what we always thought was right to what is now absolutely and totally wrong in God’s eyes. Christian programs have been cancelled, sex scenes, dope smoking and same-sex kissing, vulgarity has replaced the wholesome movies we used to be able to view. Why? Because we changed the channel instead of screaming bloody murder. Now we complain that there’s nothing decent on T.V. anymore.

We Christians have sat back and allowed, not only our government, but the media, Hollywood, to tell us, and convince many, that homosexual “marriage” and homosexual behavior is okay. Not only that but we’re called “homophobic” if we disagree! We’re attacked and called  “insensitive”  so we’ve stepped back and allowed what God calls “an abomination” (Lev. 18:22, Lev. 20:13, Duet. 22;5)  “A perversion,” (Ro.1:26-27, Lev. 18:22) and “detestable” (Lev.20:13-16) to become acceptable and legal in several states.

Businesses are being sued because their Christian owners will not forsake their Christian beliefs. They refuse to compromise the Word of God. Good for them! At least some of us has a back bone!

We have allowed 3.3 % *of the American population, the homosexual population, to dictate what is wrong in God’s eyes to what is being pushed as acceptable and “normal” across this land. Yet 86%*of the American population profess to be Christians.  A mere 14% of Americans, non-believers, are dictating what we Christians should be standing up and speaking out and pressing in against! Why aren’t we?

What about abortion? We sat silent when Roe versus Wade was passed into law and now we’re still silent while we sit on our couches and thousands upon thousands of babies are murdered and we continue to groan quietly. One woman started that ball rolling! Think what would have happened if the conglomerate of the church had stood together against it.

We’ve elected a president that advocates those things the Lord our God abhors! Don’t tell me it was all non-believers who voted in this man! Christians lined the polls anxious for “change.” Well we got it brothers and sisters. And its our own fault! Now we’re paying for selective abortions, premeditated murder, whether we want to or not! Now pastors are being sued if they refuse to “marry” a same sex couple or quote scripture about homosexuality.

I could go on for another book-length list of what we Christians have allowed because we have become complacent. We can blame the Democrats. We can blame the Republicans. We can blame the presidents and Congress, Senate, etc. But the blame lays solely and squarely in our own laps!

We have sat back with our holier than thou attitudes and professed to be Christ followers as we moan and groan about what’s happening in our world instead of standing up, shouting to the world that we are not going to follow the dictates of a self-serving, power-hungry government or the likes of those who advocate what is against God’s Word.

God is not happy with His church! How do I know that? REPENT, REPENT, REPENT. That is what Christ has been calling us to do for generations and now so much more than probably ever before.

I am not advocating that all the problems in America are due to complacent Christians but there are many areas that we as the church can stand against and have a huge influence on. 86% of Americans have a voice so we need to stop groaning and trying to be “politically correct,” and stand up for what the Lord’s teachings are.

How can we do that? We can elect officials that are Bible believing people and seek God’s wisdom. We can confront the manager of the store that refuses to display “Merry Christmas” or insists their employees greet with “Happy Holiday.” Mom’s and grandma’s and teacher’s can confront the schools principles or board of education about the constitutional rights of our students. If our rights as a Christian is being denied we have Christian organizations that will help us defend those rights.  And above all, pray, pray, pray.

We are called to be light unto the world and if we sit back and say or do nothing out of fear of reprisal from those who are atheists, “gay rights,” “pro-choice” groups, the movie industry, or biased media we are just as much to blame for the downfall of our country as they are. In fact we are even more to blame because “Greater is He who is in you than He that is in the world.”

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“He summons the heavens above, and the earth, that He may judge His people.” Ps. 50:4

*Statistics Portal percentages for 2013

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