Showing posts from January, 2012

Why Not Newt?

During every election, I usually vote for Republican candidates since they tend to make decisions more in line with the Word of God than Democrats. While President Obama will likely be the Democratic nominee again this year, the Republican nomination may not be decided for a while. One man who might represent the GOP in November is Newt Gingrich.  Last weekend, the former House Speaker came from behind in the polls to win the South Carolina Primary. This was surprising especially since two days before, the ABC news program “Nightline” aired a controversial interview with one of Newt’s former wives. Marianne Gingrich claimed that prior to their divorce, her husband wanted “an open marriage” (allowing for him to have a wife and a mistress at the same time). Newt has refuted his ex-wife’s claims. Many people are quick to criticize Newt Gingrich because he cheated on his two ex-wives and got married a third time. However, he has repented as a result of his conversion to Cathol

Help From Above

How many times have you heard someone say, “God helps those who help themselves”? Some people quote that like it came directly from the Bible. Yet that phrase is found nowhere in Scripture. Psalm 46:1 tells us that God is “a very present help in trouble.”  He is willing to guide us through any problem we find ourselves in. But in James chapter 2, both verses 20 and 26 say, “Faith without works is dead.”  Some Christians expect God to do everything for them when they need to take corresponding action to what they believe. For example, let’s say you need a job. The first thing you should do is pray for God to lead you to the right one. But unless God gives you specific instructions to wait on Him or apply at a particular place, you might need to fill out a few applications. It’s unlikely an employer will come looking for you. Jesus’ exhortation to “seek and you will find” (Matthew 7:7) could apply here.   A t the beginning of 1996 I had just received the revelation that I

Agree to Disagree

One tactic Satan uses to divide believers is doctrinal differences. I saw an example of that at a recent house meeting. After a time of singing worship songs and individuals stepping out to give prophetic words, a traveling preacher began talking about how people often walk out of his meetings. A short time later, this minister gave reasons why he believes Jesus will come back in 2018 (but didn’t mention a specific day). I also overheard his wife say we are already in the tribulation period. As a “pre-trib” believer myself, red flags went up in my mind. It wouldn’t have bothered me much if the preacher simply stated he believes in a post-tribulation rapture and then talked about something else. Instead, he continued pushing that doctrine. Other people in attendance countered things this preacher said by quoting Scripture. I mostly kept quiet but corrected him on one erroneous statement. The preacher claimed Billy Graham’s ministry produced the 1972  film  “A Thief in the Nigh

Wisdom from a “Religious Fanatic”

Last Sunday, a Facebook friend from New York City wrote on his wall about getting into trouble for preaching the gospel on a bus. A friend of his who I’ll call Bruce (not his real name) tried to discourage him from doing that . I posted a response quoting Jesus’ commandment to “preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15).  During an ensuing exchange of emails, Bruce repeatedly labeled me a religious fanatic. According to the New Oxford American Dictionary, one definition of fanatic is “a person with an obsessive interest in and enthusiasm for something, esp. an activity.” The fact is everybody gets enthusiastic about someone or something. It’s interesting to note the word enthusiasm originates from a Greek word meaning “possessed by a god” or “inspired.” I pointed out to Bruce that whenever the Yankees win the World Series or the Giants win the Super Bowl, the streets of New York City become crowded with sports fanatics. Many of these fans are not ashamed to

Go and Grow in Your Gifts

As I began seeking the Lord on what to share for the first blog article of 2012, I immediately recalled a vision I had two weeks ago. During a Sunday morning church service, a picture flashed through my mind of a Fisher-Price Corn Popper, a toy some of you might have played with as a kid. The interpretation of this vision is that many people have colorful gifts that will remain dormant until they start moving. Then those gifts will “pop.” Look at 2 Timothy 1:6-7… “Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” Many believers quote verse 7 by itself. But often truths in Scripture are revealed only when we read particular verses together. Keep in mind that the chapter and verse numbers in the Bible were not part of the original Hebrew and Greek texts but added by translators to help God’s people find specific passages. One reason many Christ