Tuesday, March 25, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

Let’s Get Serious - A significant case will be heard before the United States Supreme Court today. Worldview asks the question: “Is Hobby Lobby The Most Consequential Religious Liberty Case In A Generation?” Worldview is calling on all people of faith to Pray Today – March 25th – for this important case that can and will affect moral values in the market place. How interested are you and how will you respond?

Let’s Get Serious - if we began to take serious matters seriously, would the outcome in our lives be impacted good, better or best? If elected officials began to seriously consider serious matters, would there be a significant difference in our nation and world? If the church began to be serious regarding serious issues, would the influence and impact of the church be evidenced in a significant way toward that which is good, better or best? The bottom line is that in these and many other areas we must begin to be more serious than we are and be involved more significantly in those things that matter the most.

Let’s Get Serious - or the church to have a significant role in our culture, society and individual lives, there must be a change in direction and a refocus on eternal verities. The church has allowed itself to become an extension of the culture. In too many instances, the church has modified in order to mollify the culture of which it has become a part. The forms, rituals and functions are now designed to gain additional numbers who will occupy pews in buildings that were built to Worship God. Because of the compromises and accommodations, the role and place of man has superseded the role and place of God in too many situations and places that are designated and called “the church”! The ways, means, message and ministry have been adjusted in such a way that the ensuing result is the departure of people from the purpose and role of the Church and Christian Message in and for their lives. What has happened and why is it happening in our culture, society, churches and individual lives? Why are we not taking serious matters seriously? What priorities have been scuttled or set aside in this approach of accommodation in today’s world?

Let’s Get Serious – A recent estimate is that the world’s population is 7.2 Billion people. Out of that number, 2.2 Billion are estimated to be “Christian”! The result indicates that 5 Billion people are something other than “Christian”! Does this matter to you? Does this matter to the “church”? In the Pastor to Pastor Post (A Release of BreakPoint) – Seeking The Strays -  T.M. Moore writes the following: “The weak you have not strengthened, the sick you have not healed, the injured you have not bound up, the strayed you have not brought back, the lost you have not sought…” Ezekiel 34:4 – “God condemned the shepherds of Israel because they did not seek the strays and did not work to save the lost sheep. How do we respond to those who haven’t been to church in a long time? Who leave our churches without so much as an explanation? To young people who fall away from faith during their college years? To the many unchurched people yet remaining in our communities? Pastors should lead the way in showing concern for the strays and the lost, and they must do so with the “noble spirit” of a patient servant rather than the bluster of a self-assured tyrant of the soul. Let’s Get Serious - Is your own work in the area of evangelism sufficient as an example for your flock? What is your practice in “seeking the strays” in your congregation?”

Let’s Get Serious – If we are taking a serious God seriously, then we need to keep in mind that which He has commissioned and stated. John 4:35 – “Do you not say: Four months more and then the harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.” Matthew 7:21 – “Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Mark 16:14-15 – “Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen. He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Let’s Get Serious – How serious are you about the things that matter to a serious God? Consider these things with me!

Thursday, March 20, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

As we try to understand the times in which we live and consider how to function amid the rapidly changing times, we gain a sense that the gradualism that has been allowed and accepted by the citizenry has produced a context and way of life that is marked by cultural chaos. How did we become so complacent and indifferent? Why is it that we elected people to political office without ascertaining their moral values and worldview? How is it that we allow ourselves to either ignore or forget the adage that cautioned: “Power corrupts – absolute power corrupts absolutely”? The words of Thomas Jefferson are a haunting reminder: “Experience has shown that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.” Even further back in history than Jefferson are the words of Tacitus in The Annals of Imperial Rome where he wrote: “The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.” There is this caustic comment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky in The Brothers Karamazov where he wrote: “I can't bear the thought that a man of lofty mind and heart begins with the ideal of the Madonna and ends with the ideal of Sodom.” 

The ideals and influences of Sodom and Gomorrah began to be apparent in the Gallup Survey released in February 2013 that concluded: “The percentage of U.S. adults who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) ranges from 1.7% in North Dakota to 5.1% in Hawaii and 10% in the District of Columbia…” The point made was that every State in the Union is part of the overall statistic and that currently, since the change in military and civil law, the numbers have increased to an estimate that between 5% and 20% of the population can be included in the LGBT orientation and preference. The cultural chaotic slide toward Gomorrah is escalated further by the trends toward the legalization of marijuana use. Is this slide into Cultural Chaos and the nearing arrival in Gomorrah a surprise? Where are the persons of character and moral verities who will stand in the gap of humanity and say “ENOUGH – we have gone too far and must reverse these chaotic choices!”?

There are obvious reasons why this slide toward Gomorrah has occurred and is continuing to accelerate. Once we allowed for the removal of prayer, Bible reading, singing of Christmas Carols and the removal of Nativity Scenes from our schools, cities and culture, a vacuum was created that began to be filled with all kinds of things once viewed as anomalies. It’s interesting to observe how corrupt leaders can follow a subtle path in order to attain a devious goal and end. In terms of the children, Adolph Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf, “The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation.” Where did this lead? History records the death camps, the targeting of all Jews (who were declared to be sub-human), the inhumanities toward ethnic peoples, and the desire to achieve the master race. This was allowed to mushroom because of the complacency, indifference and gullibility of people – and then – they had waited too long to be opposed to the turpitude (base and shameful character; depravity) of their leaders and the mistreatment of their fellow man.

The Bible addresses the subject of corruption and especially in the day wherein it is steadily increased within a culture that seems eager to embrace it. The question is – How can a follower of Jesus Christ survive amid the eroding, decaying and chaotic culture? In II Peter 1:3-4, we are given words of hope and confidence: “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” Romans 8:21-25 (selected) is a word of encouragement and hope: “the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God… For in this hope we were saved…we wait for it with patience.” You can and must make a difference for Christ and His kingdom in this corrupt culture. Consider these things with me.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

There is almost an endless list of words to which “in” is added. One that is bandied about frequently in the news about the government of the United States is the term ineptness. The term has a basic meaning: “a lack of skill and/or ability.” An illustration would include a faltering sports team whose coach lacks a skill to motivate and lead. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary includes in its list of Synonyms for ineptness the following terms: “inadequacy, incapability, incapacity, incompetence, inability and insufficiency.” In its section of related words, they include: “inaptitude, ineffective, ineffectual, inefficacy, and inefficient.” The way one views human government, colleagues, or authority persons is subjective. A great deal depends on the manner in which government is conducted, or how colleagues relate and interact, and how authority types lead – either by fiat or example. Most people in life have encountered those who are both incorrect (embracing or promoting error) and intransigent (completely unwilling to change; very stubborn). As a result, it foments an insufferable (very bad or unpleasant: too unpleasant to deal with or accept; difficult to endure) context for work and life.

If or when ineptness becomes the dominating display of governing, colleague interaction or being subordinate to authority types – what is one’s recourse? Is there a viable alternative? What are the places for non-compliance? Especially in the cases with which the follower of Jesus Christ finds himself/herself, what should govern ones actions or reactions? Is one obligated to obey the laws of man if/when those laws are contrary to the moral laws of God? Should a follower of Jesus Christ who is a Medical Doctor participate in either abortion or euthanasia because it is legal, or refuse on the basis of God’s Moral Law that requires: “Thou shalt not kill”? Should the Biblical Clergy participate in same-gender marriages because in is legal, or refuse on the basis of God’s Moral Law that condemns such behavior?

A display of ineptness recorded in I Kings 12:3-16. Rehoboam has followed Solomon as king in Israel. He is unequal to the task and unwise in his choices. His brother, Jeroboam, who returns from Egypt and approaches his brother accompanied by many from Israel with these words: "Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but now lighten the harsh labor and the heavy yoke he put on us, and we will serve you."  To his credit, Rehoboam seems sincere when he indicates he will seek advice for three days before reaching a decision. Verses 6-11 record his interaction with the Elders and the younger men: “King Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served his father Solomon during his lifetime. How would you advise me to answer these people? He asked. They replied: If today you will be a servant to these people and serve them and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your servants. But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him. He asked them: What is your advice? How should we answer these people who say to me: Lighten the yoke your father put on us? The young men who had grown up with him replied: Tell these people who have said to you: Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but make our yoke lighter--tell them: My little finger is thicker than my father's waist. My father laid on you a heavy yoke; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions." In reaching this decision, he demonstrated his ineptness – and the kingdom would soon become divided.

There is concern in our day because the “church” has allowed itself to become influenced and impacted by a Culture in Chaos. As a result, the “church” has displayed ineptness and incapable of communicating adequately to a generation who is in the process of losing its way and toppling down the slippery slope of failure, consequence and judgment. We need the insight and commitment of Paul in II Corinthians 2:14-17, “Thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things? For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God's word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.” Consider these things with me.

Friday, March 14, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

Are we living in a decade of decline or decadence – or both decline and decadence? On Friday, March 07, 2014, The Talking Points Memo on The O’Reilly Factor stated the following: “Russia's violation of international law raises a very unpleasant question, is the USA now incapable of confronting dangerous behavior? The short answer is no. We can still right wrongs if we have the will. But the stark truth is America is getting weaker on almost every front. Let's Start With Economics…median income for Americans has dropped about seven percent… On The Military Front, the nation is exhausted and therefore, weaker. Iraq and Afghanistan have sapped money and manpower and left the American public with no appetite to right international wrongs. The …administration is even seeking to downsize the army -- a major mistake in a very dangerous world. On The Social Front, we are heading for disaster. The collapse of the traditional American family speaks for itself with almost 41 percent of American babies now born out of wedlock, many to poor, ill-educated women who cannot support them. The educational system is corrupt with powerful teachers unions refusing to impose responsible discipline in the public schools. Children at risk are beset with corruptive influences as the cynical entertainment industry peddles garbage to young people with little opposition from an apathetic media which tilts secular left. Intoxicating Agents Like Marijuana Are Now Celebrated as freedom-giving substances that should be available everywhere. Drug pushers are defined as nonviolent criminals who just need a little rehab not punishment. Crude behavior at sports arenas is tolerated as is lying under oath in the nation's courtrooms which are under siege by nuisance lawsuits designed by legal shakedown artists who have absolutely nothing to lose in a system which refuses to hold them accountable…”

A large part of the reason for decline and decadence is the departure from basic values and standards. The Standard for a nation is given in Proverbs 14:34, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” What prevails within the culture of the United States at this time – righteousness or unrighteousness? What are the guiding standards for the society – Biblical verities or political correctness advocacies? What is the moral and spiritual tilt of the nation – toward God or away from anything religious and/or spiritual? Jeremiah 14:10-11, 14 shares these words of what a culture in decline and decadence can expect: “This is what the Lord says about this people: They greatly love to wander; they do not restrain their feet. So the Lord does not accept them; he will now remember their wickedness and punish them for their sins. Then the Lord said to me: Do not pray for the well-being of this people…Then the Lord said to me: The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I have not sent them or appointed them or spoken to them. They are prophesying to you false visions, divinations, idolatries and the delusions of their own minds.” In Jeremiah 5:31, the words are clear: “The prophets prophesy lies, the priests rule by their own authority, and my people love it this way.”

Have we as a nation arrived in Gomorrah and is God’s judgment imminent? In Matthew 24:3-14, the disciples asked Jesus: “What will be the sign of the end of the age?” Jesus responds: "Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, 'I am the Christ,' and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places…Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” The remainder of the Chapter amplifies the preferred and prevailing unrighteousness that will occur. How then are the people of God to live amid the cultural chaos? A brief summary is given in Romans 13:11-14, And do this, understanding the present time…let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently - not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy…Clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” Consider these things with me. 

Friday, March 7, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

The nation and world is caught in a quagmire of its own making. Once the moral compass is ignored and/or obliterated, there is no standard by which a nation and people will have guidance. Without knowing it, a large cross-section of people have become an example of a conclusion in Judges 21:25 (NIV), “…everyone did as he saw fit.” In The Message: “People did whatever they felt like doing.” A people who had no authority figure to which they needed to adhere and who left to their own schemes, desires and pleasures, did whatever they wanted to do and whenever they wanted to do it. With the absence of an authority figure, there was also an absence of any fear of God. David wrote about the absence of any fear of God in Psalm 36:1-4 (NLT), “Sin whispers to the wicked, deep within their hearts. They have no fear of God to restrain them. In their blind conceit, they cannot see how wicked they really are. Everything they say is crooked and deceitful. They refuse to act wisely or do what is good. They lie awake at night, hatching sinful plots. Their course of action is never good. They make no attempt to turn from evil."

What does The Trend Toward Solipsism mean and how has a nation and people arrived at this place?  Michael Barone, in a Washington Examiner entry, used this term in reference to what he says is “…President Obama’s mistaken belief that others see the world as he sees it. Solipsism: It’s a fancy word which means that you assume others see the world as you do and will behave as you would… Being on the lookout for common ground is sensible. Assuming common ground when none exists is foolish. And often has bad consequences.” Some of the results of this are seen in how citizens respond to their own government and how other nations view the credibility of our land. To assume that by means of rhetoric and arrogance other nations, peoples and our own citizenry will respond has proven to be folly and unproductive.

What/Who has gained advantage in this day and time of cultural chaos and out-of-touch authority figures of our day? One, from among many examples, is the LGBTQ movement that has gained considerable momentum and now has a once God-fearing nation standing at and crossing the threshold into Gomorrah. What does the LBGTQ represent and stand for? Texas Tech University produced and published a pamphlet that defines LGBTQ. “(1) “L” stands for lesbians – women whose primary emotional, romantic, sexual, or affectional attractions are to other women.  (2) “G” stands for gay men – men whose primary emotional, romantic, sexual, or affectional attractions are to other men.  (3) “B” stands for bisexuals – men or women whose primary emotional, romantic, sexual, or affectional attractions are to both women and men.  (4) “T” stands for transgendered – a broad term that includes cross-dressers, transsexuals, and people who live substantial portions of their lives as other than their birth gender. (5) “Q” stands for questioning – someone who is questioning their sexual and/or gender orientation. Sometimes, the Q stands for “queer,” a term reclaimed by some LGBTs for political reasons. What people in these groups all have in common is that they challenge the heterosexist norms of mainstream society and are stigmatized as a result; otherwise, the LGBTQ community is very diverse with respect to ethnic and cultural backgrounds, physical ability, religion, personality traits, socioeconomic class, and many other attributes.”

Paul established the parameter for those feigning to be naive or arrogantly defiant in Romans 3:11-18 (NLT), “No one has real understanding; no one is seeking God. All have turned away from God; all have gone wrong. No one does good, not even one. Their talk is foul, like the stench from an open grave. Their speech is filled with lies. The poison of a deadly snake drips from their lips. Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness…Wherever they go, destruction and misery follow them. They do not know what true peace is. They have no fear of God to restrain them." The nation, having ignored God and endeavoring to remove Him from public display and discourse, offers no moral restraint. The “church”, in many instances, has adopted a posture that tolerates that which is abhorrent and is too willing to condone that which God has condemned. Have we arrived at a place where Genesis 6:5-7 is that which God observes about America, and will similar conclusions soon become this nation’s reality? Has the casual “christian” approach placed us into the context of Psalm 7:8-12? May the nation and “church” begin to fear Almighty God and repent of all sin. Consider these things with me.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

World events have a way of generating both concern and controversy. The current trends are bringing about a drift from sound and sane moral values to an accommodation with the whims and wishes of a culture in chaos. A book was written in 1996 that addressed the trends that are being witnessed today. Wikipedia describes this book and author: “Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline by former United States Court of Appeals judge Robert H. Bork. Bork's thesis in the book is that American and more generally Western culture is in a state of decline and that the cause of this decline is modern liberalism and the rise of the New Left. Specifically, he attacks modern liberalism for what he describes as its dual emphases on radical egalitarianism and radical individualism.” If Bork was alive today, one can only wonder if he would have written a sequel to Slouching Towards Gomorrah and entitled if Arrival In Gomorrah.

As current events unfold, there is considerable discussion across the spectrum of the present role of the United States of America in the world. Does this nation remain as the most dependable bastion of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? Can other nations respect the posture and standards of our nation? Do they see and have confidence that this nation is a reliable ally on whom they can depend? IN yesterday’s Washing Post, an Opinion Writer – Dana Milbank headlined his column: “Obama: The Feckless Tyrant.” He wrote the following: “President Obama is such a weak strongman. What’s more, he is a feeble dictator and a timid tyrant. That, at any rate, is Republicans’ critique of him. With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Obama’s critics pivoted seamlessly from complaining about his overreach to fretting that he is being too cautious. Call it Operation Oxymoron.”

What is meant by the term feckless? It is defined as: "worthlessirresponsible, weakineffective.” In a Weekly Standard Blog on March 01, William Kristol wrote: “Putin Acts, Obama Affirms.” Kristol goes on to write: “Here's President Obama on Friday: The United States will stand with the international community in affirming that there will be costs for any military intervention in Ukraine. Characteristically, Obama establishes a few degrees of separation between himself and actually acting. He doesn't say, straightforwardly, that the United States will lead the international community in imposing costs for any military intervention in Ukraine. No. The United States will stand with others in affirming that there will be costs. One suspects that President Putin isn't very worried about affirmations of future costs by the international community. He's seen Bashar al-Assad survive similar affirmations. Putin, like Assad, understands actions, not affirmations.” It appears that Putin views Obama as one who is feckless. While our nation may view Putin as reckless, it appears that Putin has no fear of any significant reprisals for his actions in Crimea, Ukraine.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 includes the following: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: “…a time to be silent and a time to speak…a time for war and a time for peace.” It is predictable that for almost anything that occurs the USA President will give a speech or prolonged comment about it. The question is: Is that the appropriate policy and procedure? A general principle is that “actions speak louder than words.” We are long overdue for integrity to return in our nation so that people will once again “say what they mean and mean what they say.” A basic truth for all people and applicable for all situations is stated in Proverbs 10:19-21, “When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise. The tongue of the righteous is choice silver, but the heart of the wicked is of little value. The lips of the righteous nourish many, but fools die for lack of judgment. Proverbs 18:21 adds: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” In the midst of the confusion and controversy of this day, in Ukraine are (1) Missionaries and servants of the Lord who are doing excellent ministry, and (2) brothers and sisters in Christ, some of whom are willing to die for the cause of freedom and liberty. Pray faithfully for them and be an equally courageous and concerned citizen in our nation. Consider these things with me.

Sunday, March 2, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

Sunday should be a special day in the life of an individual. It was designed by God as a day for rest. It is also a day when Worship of God should be incorporated. Why? The traditional purpose and meaning is that it represents the day of the week when Jesus Christ was resurrected from among the dead. For this reason, the Christian Sabbath is designated as the first day of the week, The Lord's Day. The broader issue is that which God determined for the Sabbath Day and Worship of Him.

It is clearly stated in the fourth commandment – Exodus 20:8-11 – “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Deuteronomy 5:15 attaches an additional reason for the Sabbath, “Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.”  

God has commanded a day to be set aside and observed regularly and faithfully. When Jesus Christ had a conversation with the woman at the well, the concept of Worship became central to that dialogue. The summary of it is stated in John 4:23-24, “…a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth." It is apparent that worship is not something to be done occasionally. Worship should be done frequently and faithfully. A valid question can be asked in terms of how worship is to occur and what must be included in the set time when people gather for corporate worship. Basically, what are the necessary components in a worship service and who makes that determination? Those who do surveys and establish statistics regarding church attendance indicate that the Millenials and the Generation X groups are declining in many churches in our nation. A reason that is given by some is that a worship service is more boring than uplifting. Are they correct?

In the religious exercises in the context of a church, has a tradition and ritual emerged as something that must be observed at all times in order for worship to be valid? Why are some worship services as long as they are? What is the attention span of an attending parishioner? Why is it a requirement to sing all the stanzas of the Hymn selected? Does it add to the focus of the worship service? Is there a connection in a worship service with (a) the Hymns selected, (b) the choir anthem sung, (c) the responsive reading or the Scripture selections, (d) the Prayers offered, (e) the recitations included, and (f) the sermon preached – is it too parochial, too long, illogical, labored? Has the Minister/Pastor prepared a sermon properly? Did he prayerfully zero in on the conclusion and then build the sermon to arrive at that thrust and point? What is the one major truth one should learn and carry home following a worship service? As a person leaves the worship service, is he more inclined to acknowledge benefit and blessing, or to ask himself or anyone who is interested – so what?

The individual purpose for a person in terms of Sabbath observance and life commitment is given in Hebrews 10:22-26, “let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience…Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Find your way to a place of worship where God is the focus and the Word of God is faithfully proclaimed. Consider these things with me. 

Saturday, March 1, 2014


From My Perspective - - -

Sheep are very interesting animals. When one thinks about the nature of sheep, it is easy to conclude that they are gentle and vulnerable. They are gentle in the sense that they are not vicious or carnivorous and vulnerable because they are an easy prey for any predator. They need a protector – a shepherd - who will be vigilant and offer a defense against that which would attach the flock. The shepherd would find the best pasture for his sheep so they will be nourished and healthy. The very nature of the sheep is that they will follow their shepherd – willingly and without resistance – because they have learned their shepherd will lead them to the greenest pastures and quench their thirst at the edge of still waters.

Everyone has some knowledge of the words written by David in Psalm 23, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.” A paraphrase states those words: “Because the Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything that I need.” This is a picture that Jesus Christ embraced for himself when He stated in John 10, “I am the Good Shepherd Who lays down His life for His sheep.” He exposes Himself to this risk and danger because the sheep are incapable of protecting or delivering themselves. If they are left to themselves, they will be immediately on a dangerous and perilous path. They will meander aimlessly because they lack a sense of direction and none from among their number is able to emerge as a leader for the flock.

In 1843, Horatius Bonar penned the words for a hymn that has become a partial testimony of several, “(1) I Was A Wandering Sheep, I did not love the fold; I did not love my Shepherd’s voice, I would not be controlled. I was a wayward child, I did not love my home; I did not love my Father’s voice, I loved afar to roam. (2) The Shepherd sought His sheep, The Father sought His child; They followed me o’er vale and hill, O’er deserts waste and wild; They found me nigh to death, Famished and faint and lone; They bound me with the bands of love, They saved the wandering one. (3) They spoke in tender love, They raised my drooping head, They gently closed my bleeding wounds, My fainting soul they fed; They washed my filth away, They made me clean and fair; They brought me to my home in peace, The long sought wanderer. (4) Jesus my Shepherd is: ’Twas He that loved my soul; ’Twas He that washed me in His blood, ’Twas He that made me whole. ’Twas He that sought the lost, That found the wandering sheep, ’Twas He that brought me to the fold, ’Tis He that still doth keep. (5) No more a wandering sheep, I love to be controlled; I love my tender Shepherd’s voice, I love the peaceful fold. No more a wayward child, I seek no more to roam; I love my heavenly Father’s voice, I love, I love His home!” Do these words echo your personal testimony?

Those who measure church life and numbers indicate that the Generation X and the Millennial's have lost interest in the church and their attendance is waning. The Church continues on its course – maintaining its forms and rituals; its traditions and formats. Those who are absenting themselves are bored and disinterested in attending the long and drawn out services that are called “worship” services. Meanwhile, the church has become indifferent and impervious to the needs and longings of multitudes of wandering sheep in their vicinity and neighborhood. This situation is far more serious and urgent than the church thinks. The Lord indicates in Jeremiah 50:6, "My people have been lost sheep. Their shepherds have led them astray, turning them away on the mountains. From mountain to hill they have gone. They have forgotten their fold. All who found them have devoured them…” Similar words are stated in Ezekiel 34:8-10, "As I live, says the Lord GOD, because my sheep have become a prey, and my sheep have become food for all the wild animals, since there was no shepherd; and because my shepherds have not searched for my sheep, but the shepherds have fed themselves, and have not fed my sheep; therefore, you shepherds, hear the word of the LORD: Thus says the Lord GOD, I am against the shepherds; and I will demand my sheep at their hand, and put a stop to their feeding the sheep; no longer shall the shepherds feed themselves. I will rescue my sheep from their mouths, so that they may not be food for them. Is that the vision and mission of your life, as well as that of the church you attend? If not, why not? Rather than forms, God wants faithfulness; rather than just recitation of creedal confessions, God wants compassion toward the wandering sheep. Are you a spectator or a participator? Consider these things with me.