Sunday, May 18, 2008

Matthew 28


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Vacation

So, I'll be out of town for the next week, hidden away in a little retreat house in Michigan, with a few friends, more than a few cigars, and a lot of prayer and quiet. I hope you'll remember to come back after I don't post anything else new this because there still is much more to come. Soon I'll be streaming live video of our study hour, "Wisdom and Hope," (I'd have one for you today if my cpu (Vista) didn't decide to freeze up. But I will get that fixed soon.

Meanwhile, blessings on your week, and enjoy the sermon for Trinity Sunday. :D

Friday, May 16, 2008

Politics? Lies? Nah...

A mighty fine summary of recent events.

Meanwhile, if you want to hear the fantastic outreach that was "canned," check out him out at www.ecrevolution.com

Thursday, May 15, 2008

You Want Gospel Outreach!?


Here's more from that missionary to Africa who's parish is exploding with converts from a Muslim land, whom the LCMS is recalling because he is baptizing people even though they told him to stop.

There may be good political reasons for this action, but there is no good theological reasons. Imagine Peter listening to he Jewish leaders when they said, "Stop speaking this name Jesus."

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

CHARGE!!!!!


I heard a joke about two years ago about G.W.Bush. It goes like this:

"The most important thing to me is to have a president who is certain about his beliefs. I want a president who believes on Wednesday the same things he believed on Monday, no matter what happened on Tuesday."

The more I watch the politics of the world stage, the more amazed I am at how terribly congruent they are with the politics of my own Church body, somewhat, it would seem, because of a bizarre approach to convictions.

Meanwhile, as we hasten to do everything we can to apply 30 year old ideas about reaching the culture, the Baptists are yelling from the top of their lungs: "WAIT!!! GO BACK!!!!"

But right now, the LCMS believes what American Christianity believed yesterday, regardless of what's happening in American Christianity today.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

That Post I Promised in My Sermon

Test the Spirits:

The Shack is the recent best seller in Christianity, following on the heels of The Secret. It is endorsed by such famed Christian artists as Michael W. Smith (who himself is one of most single-handed forces for the rise of "contemporary" music in "church.) Mars Hill Church of Seattle (on of the premier "mega-churches" in the USA provides the following clip which attempts to teach us the problems, and does about as well as Calvinists can, given their own Nestorian Christology.

Despite completely botching the Reformation interpretation of the first and second commandments, (and not looking very cool at all cause he can't sport a clerical like all truly hip pastors), he does a decent job exposing the simple logistics of the issue.



Why is the Trinity important? Aside from being the clear testimony of the early Church, without which no one can be saved, but is also the only possible way to have a God who is eternally a God of love (thank you St. Augustine.) There is more to the narrative revelation of who God is, as he reveals himself in Scripture, but for now this will have to suffice. :D

2. Fresh Fire Ministries is the realized fantasy of Todd Bentley. (see his video below) Leading revival by healings and modern prophecy, he is taking Lakeland Florida for his "God". Trinity Broadcasting Network has beens stealing money from millions by this "Word of Faith" movement for a long time. Personally receiving private info from Jesus lies at the center of this new (anti)"Christian" theology.



I'm glad this guy's not in a clerical. But the next guy is:

3. This guy, "the trailblazer," ("Bishop" Jordan) courtesy of Zoe Ministries, will tell your future for only $300. The psychic on the corner will lie to you for a lot less.

4. This is plain and simple blaspheme. But so is this, this and this.

5. Finally, is all this so very different from Rick Warren and his Purpose Driven "Church" movement, or any of the other countless "new" ways to fix everything in the Church? Read on at "A Little Leaven" for some great Lutheran interpretation of the problems with the Church Growth Movement.

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Thanks to Chris Rosbrough for doing all the hard work. I look forward to hearing responses from any of you that were in Church this morning!

Pentecost - John 7



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Friday, May 09, 2008

Have I been busy?

Yes. But apparently not quite so busy as Todd Wilken. ;D

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Christian Persecution


This week in our Sunday morning study time "Wisdom and Hope," we will be looking at the ICC report on Christian persecution in 2008. I have prepared a summary of that report which is hear available for download. I highly recommend you take a look at this ten page document, full of graphs, stories and artwork, and suggest to your pastor a day of Bible Study spent on learning about and praying for Christians around the world.

Easter 7


Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Ablaze, and burning down every mission we can


From the most recent newsletter of Rev. James May, a missionary Burkina Faso and Togo, West Africa:

I regret to inform you that due to programmatic and business decisions, World Mission has decided to cease employing me as a missionary in West Africa. This decision came as a shock to me and my family as it may also be a surprise to you.

World Mission has been pressuring me to move on and inform you as soon as possible. One reason is that I would be without a paycheck and insurance soon after we have a baby due in July. We hope that by the grace of God we could have another call in place when my salary and benefits terminate at the end of August 2008.

The decision leaves three newly planted churches in Burkina Faso without a theologically trained leader and also the Lutheran Church of Togo without a missionary which they had been awaiting for six years. Please keep all these people involved in your prayers.



Does this kind of news make you angry? It should.

Hit: Mollie

Monday, May 05, 2008

It's a theological disease too, you know?



Amen, brotha!

Wait, did he use big words?

Sunday, May 04, 2008

If only he knew...



If only he knew that that beast isn't going to devour Rome after the "secret" rapture, but that that beast has been, is, and will continue to devour all false churches through false teaching and preaching - that is, teaching and preaching which takes Jesus out of the center of the Bible, be it by claims of papal authority, or claims of dispensational shennanigans ripped from the @$$ of would-be prophets beginning in the late 1800s.

He's right about the effect. He's right about the symbolism. He's dead wrong about what the Bible actually says.

Pray for false teachers. Saul can become Paul. But it's not going to be by teaching that the cross of Jesus was an "oops" and the Church of Jesus Christ amongst the gentiles is a plan "B." (And if THAT doesn't sound like any Christianity you want to be a part of, then you might want to study these dispensational "secret" rapture teachers a bit deeper. It gets a lot uglier than Trentine Rome ever did. I mean, big hint - the blood of the saints is the persecution of the Jews? Find that ANYWHERE in the New Testament, and I'll buy you cigar.



How many horns are on that beast again?

Saturday, May 03, 2008

In the Name


Tomorrow, for the prayers of the Church, we shall use the Didache, chapter 10:

We give you thanks Holy Father
for your holy name, which you have caused to dwell in our hearts
and for the knowledge and faith and immortality, which you have made known to us
through Jesus, your servant;
To you be glory forever

You, Almighty Master, created all things for the sake of your name,
And you have given food and drink to mankind for our enjoyment, so that we might look to you,
But you have bestowed upon us a Spiritual food and drink, and eternal life through your Son
Before all things, we thus give you thanks, for your are mighty.
Yours is the glory forever and ever.

Remember your Church, Lord, to deliver it from all evil
And to make it perfect in your love;
and gather it, the one Church that has been sanctified,
From the four winds, into your Kingdom,
Which you have prepared for it;
For yours is the power and the glory forevermore. Amen.

Let grace come! Let this world pass away!
Hosanna to the God of David.
If any man is holy, let him come.
If any man is not holy, let him repent.
Maranath (which means, Come, Lord Jesus). Amen.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

On Dead Christiasn and Gay Muslims


No. I'm not kidding.

There's no secret that all is not well in the lands of the prophet. Whether it's the military industrial complex of a manifest-destiny empire gone awry, or the jihad which began with Alexandria and continues with Paris (one way or another,) the Middle East is on the radar of more than just the insane Christian Zionists.

But I cannot find the disharmony more bizarre than in today's print-news (Philly Inquirer) color article about the "plight of gay muslims," which is the central topic of a forum intending to draw 75,000 participants for lectures, movies and...oh yes, parties.

Epicentral to this "Jihad for love" are the "coming out" on film of a wide range of islamic lesbian/bi/gay/transvestites. With such moving stories, the "16th Annual Equality Forum" feels they will strike a mighty blow for the global movement of civil rights. Top on the docket is the dire need for these "reforming" men and women to affirm "both their religion and critique religious leaders."

Strange, I think. Reform used to be a word reserved for fixing something that has changed for the worse, that is, to take something back to its foundation. Yet, of all the world religions, Islam is one of the least changed throughout its rather violent history. The "reformers" of the day are the fundamentalist fanatics who do indeed kill and persecute those caught in homosexual acts, among other things. Revolution is more at heart here, and yet still I cannot fathom it. It is like a man who marries a woman and then proceeds to have a plastic surgeon remake her entirely, while simulaneously brainwashing her to only say, "Yes," "certainly," and "that feels good."

Meanwhile, "thousands of Christians fleeing persecution in other parts of Iraq have returned since 2004" only to face a new battle - poverty, joblessness and despair in Kurdish-controlled "safety."

"The plight of these Assyrian/Chaldean Christians has been aggravated by the collapse of any central government authority in the Nineveh province, to which they officially belong, and by the actions of the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), which is seeking to annex this fertile land where Christians have lived for 2,000 years because it is believed to contain rich oil resources."

As a result, "the Christian community in Iraq is on the verge of extinction."

So much for the great hero democracy, eh? Quote the old lady who once lived under Saddam, "They burned my house in Baghdad, so I have come here. I have nothing. Please help me. Please help me."

While aid money that ought to go here is generally confiscated by the Kurdish government, and even returned unspent (generally thought in order to force the Christians to flee to Syria for electricity and water, leaving the bountiful land available for annexing,) it remains difficult to point the real blame at anyone but the Iraqi (American) government.

Despite being within a short distance of a booming Kurdish metropolis, Christians are routinely refused work, or, at best, forced to ally political votes with the Kurdish Democratic Party in order to gain favors.

For nearly 2000 years, this land has been home to Christians. There are many old churches which now lie empty. And unlike personal sexual preferences, being a Christian in Iraq is not something you can hide. There is no closet to stay in.

Salted drinking water. "New" refugee shelters that are already falling apart. The unaffordable $50 a month to live in the Christian ghetto. Father Sabri al-Maqdessy, of St. Joseph's Chaldean church in Ainkawa, says to conclude, "Arabs scream about Palestinian rights, but we have nobody who talks about our rights. Without that, in 10 more years, you not see a Christian left living here."



You tell me, John Lennon. Imagine there's no heaven or hell. All you need is love. Right? So, 75,000 will dance the week away in Philly, in some senses rightly mourning the atraucities of a religion they will nonetheless celebrate, while tomorrow, the baptized die, regardless of what they have done with their privies.

Imagine all the people, Living for today

Nothing to kill or die for, And no religion too

You may say that I'm a dreamer, But I'm not the only one...

So it would seem.

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