Monday, January 15, 2018

Proposal to Solve Gun Violence

Solving gun violence does not have to be complicated. Actually, it should be very easy. Following is my proposal to solve the problem.

We know that a large percentage of gun crimes are committed with stolen guns. All we have to do is make a new law (Isn't that always the answer? Make a new law.) that says all criminals must submit to a background check and purchase a "gun stealing license" before they are allowed to steal a gun and then wait fifteen days before stealing it. After they steal it, they must register it. That way, after they commit their gun crime, they will be easier to catch. This will work because we know that criminals always obey the laws. If they see a sign that says "gun-free zone," they simply slink away and find something else to do, so obviously if they know it is illegal to steal a gun without a background check and without a license, they simply will not do it.

Does that sound absurd? Obviously, it does, so I fully expect some elected official to pick up on it and propose it, because it is very much like all of the other foolish gun-control laws and proposals.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Daniel's Prayer of Thanksgiving (Repost)

I published this post a few years ago, so instead of writing a new post for Thanksgiving, I decided to repost it.

We so often think of this time of year as a time to thank God for all His blessings – material things – our homes, our cars, our wealth relative to the rest of the world, our country, our freedom, food, etc. For these things we most certainly should be thankful, but Daniel’s prayer of thanksgiving teaches us the importance of being thankful for much more. It reveals a great deal about the nature and character of God – the things on which are based all His blessings to us. We need to be especially thankful all the time, not just at a special time of year.


Daniel’s prayer is found in the second chapter of his prophecy. King Nebuchadnezzar had his dream of the great image, and it troubled him, because he did not know what it meant. He called in all of his magicians, astrologers, sorcerers, and Chaldeans – in other words, his alleged “wise men.” Of course, these men were not truly wise at all. They had no connection with the God of heaven. It quickly became clear that Nebuchadnezzar did not really trust the wise men, because he demanded not only the interpretation but the content of the dream itself. When the wise men asked him to tell them the dream so they could interpret it, he accused them of stalling and threatened to destroy them if they could not tell him the dream, but he promised great rewards for anyone who could do so.

Their response rang quite true. Even these heathen “wise men” had enough sense to know that only God (or “the gods” as they put it) could do what the king was asking. The Chaldeans answered the king, and said, There is not a man on earth who can tell the king's matter; therefore no king, lord, or ruler has ever asked such things of any magician, astrologer, or Chaldean. It is a difficult thing that the king requests, and there is no other who can tell it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh (Daniel 2:10-11, NKJV). 

Nevertheless, the king gave orders to have all of the wise men of Babylon destroyed, and this order included Daniel and his friends. When Daniel found out about the king’s command, he went to his house, along with Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. There they prayed and asked for the answer so that they might not be destroyed with the rest of the “wise men” of Babylon.

Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. So Daniel blessed the God of heaven. Daniel answered and said: "Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, For wisdom and might are His. And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise And knowledge to those who have understanding. He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, And light dwells with Him. I thank You and praise You, O God of my fathers; You have given me wisdom and might, And have now made known to me what we asked of You, For You have made known to us the king's demand" (Daniel 2:19-23, NKJV).

This prayer recognizes the superiority of the God of the universe, the God of the Bible, over all false gods that men have created. This we should be thankful for on a daily basis, because if we did not have such a God, He most certainly could not provide for us all of the other things we think about when we list the things for which we are thankful.

Notice the specific content of the prayer.

Blessed be the name of God forever and ever… God is eternal. He is outside of time. He is not limited as we are. We need to see things in eternal perspective and not just temporal perspective. He is eternally worthy of our praise and worship.

…wisdom and might are His. God is all-knowing and all-powerful. All of our questions find their answers in Him, and He is the one who can do something about our situations. There is no situation too big for Him to handle.

He changes the times and the seasons… God controls His creation. This contrasts God with Babylonian fatalism based on astrology. They looked to the stars, but God made the stars. God has power and control over all those things men look to. In spite of the evidence, man has chosen to worship the created thing instead of the Creator.

Romans 1 tells us that …the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse…who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever (Romans 1:18-20, 25, NKJV). 

The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork (Psalm 19:1, NKJV).

When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, The moon and the stars, which You have ordained, What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him? (Psalm 8:3-4, NKJV). 

He removes kings and raises up kings… God is sovereign. This statement contrasts a sovereign God with the weakness of Babylon deities. We sometimes wonder why God allows certain men – dictators, tyrants – to be in power. We can be confident that He has His reasons. And ultimately, all will bow to Him. 

Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:9-11, NKJV).

He gives wisdom to the wise And knowledge to those who have understanding. He reveals deep and secret things… God is the source of all wisdom and knowledge. The wise men of Babylon were not really wise men. They were not recipients of divine wisdom. Man is completely dependent on God for wisdom. Professing to be wise, they became fools (Romans 1:22, NKJV). There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death (Proverbs 14:12, NKJV).

He knows what is in the darkness… There is no hiding place from God. He knows all about us.

…light dwells with Him. He is the source of light, in contrast to the darkness. Only He can save human beings.

I thank You and praise You, O God of my fathers; you have given me wisdom and might, and have now made known to me what we asked of You, for You have made known to us the king's demand. We ought to first and foremost thank God for all He is, and then it will be very natural to thank Him for all He provides.

Coming to grips with the very nature and character of God helps put all things into perspective. No matter what comes into our lives, we who know the Lord can accept it as from the hand of our Heavenly Father who knows all things, who is in control of all things, and who loves us with an everlasting love.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Abundant Evidence

If something is true, there is abundant evidence for that fact. If something is false, there can be no evidence. It is not possible to prove or even to produce legitimate evidence for something that is not true.

Ben Stein asked Richard Dawkins what he would say if he died and ran into God. Dawkins responded, “Bertrand Russell had that point put top him, and he said something like, ‘Sir, why did you take such pains to hide yourself?’”  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlZtEjtlirc

That question makes no sense, because God is not hidden. There is evidence everywhere, from the microscopic world to the immensity of the universe, from the smallest life form to the largest animal and human beings. The evidence for His existence cannot be missed unless people simply choose to ignore it (2 Peter 3:5). On the other hand, there is NO EVIDENCE that would indicate the non-existence of God.

"…the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse…” (Romans 1:18-20, NKJV).

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Resurrection Sunday

Sunday is Easter, or more accurately, “Resurrection Sunday.” Clearly, we should never take the great doctrines of Christianity lightly, and this is especially true of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. We should celebrate the Resurrection always, not just one Sunday a year.

The Resurrection is the most important event in all of history. Christianity stands or falls on the truth of the Resurrection. I once had a Muslim young man in a high school Bible class I taught in a Christian school. Obviously, he did not believe in Christ, His substitutionary death on the cross, or His Resurrection. He was very respectful, a good student, got an “A” in my class, and frequently stayed after class to discuss biblical topics. One time he really demonstrated an understanding of truth that sometimes seems to bypass many believers. He said, “If the Resurrection is true, then Christianity is true.” Of course, he went on to tell me why he didn’t believe it, but his statement was nevertheless true and very revealing.

If someone could disprove the Resurrection, they could prove Christianity to be false. It has been attempted many times. Among many others, men like Lee Strobel and Josh McDowell tried it, and after exhaustive research and study attempting to disprove Christianity, they ending up proving just the opposite and become Christians. To an open mind, the evidence for the Resurrection is overwhelming, and it can certainly lead someone to consider and ultimately receive by faith the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

If you live in the Colorado Springs area and don’t have a church you go to regularly, I would like to invite you to Grace Bible Church. Easter Sunday would be a good time to start. Our morning service is at 9:00, followed by Sunday School at 10:45, and we usually have an evening service at 6:00, although we won’t have our evening service this Sunday.

I have previously written a number of articles on the Resurrection. They can be found here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Mike Pence Values His Marriage - What a Scandal!

I have seen politicians criticized and vilified for some really Bozo reasons, but this latest about Vice President Mike Pence is really over-the-top. He has a standard that he will not go out to dinner alone with any women other than his wife. Some are equating that with Sharia Law, and others are saying it clearly means he would never hire a woman to any position of importance. Now that is STUPID. Of course, if he were to be out with a woman other than his wife, no matter what the reason, there would be pictures posted all over the place along with stories of an alleged affair.

The critics need to do better than that, or they need to just give up and go away. I don't know what else to say about it. It seems the reality is that he loves his wife and values his marriage. Is that wrong, just because so many in our culture have ignored and/or rejected such values? His standard in this matter is wise and Biblical. Criticism of such a standard reveals the heart of the critic.

"...do not let your good be spoken of as evil..." (Romans 14:16, NKJV). "...having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed" (I Peter 3:16, NKJV). "...in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you" (Titus 2:7-8, NKJV).

Saturday, March 25, 2017

“The Shack” the Movie

I have read a few reviews of “The Shack.” Some were positive, and some were negative. I did go and see it, because I wanted to see how close the movie would be to the book and if there would be a reason to write a review. This will not be an extensive review. Anything I could say about the movie is already in my review of the book, which can be found here. The book has now sold over twenty million copies.

Not very far into the movie, it became obvious that it was going in the same direction as the book in that it contained much of the same unbiblical nonsense. The only good thing I have to say about the movie is that it did not contain as much heresy as the book, primarily because it is never possible to include as much in a movie as in a book. It would make the movie oppressively long to do so.

That having been said, I must point out that the movie is, in reality, much more dangerous than the book. I say this because a movie can be used very effectively to manipulate the emotions. Some people believe that anything that elicits emotion is effective in bringing people to God. This is, of course, nonsense. A skilled moviemaker or playwright could produce something that could play with the emotions and make the viewer feel good about pretty much anything. Warm fuzzy feelings do not determine truth. Truth stands on its own, regardless of what someone “feels” about it. Since “The Shack” is about the “great sadness” of losing a little daughter to a kidnapper and murderer, it certainly tugs at the heartstrings.

Regardless of the skill of a writer or moviemaker, truth cannot be manufactured from falsehood. William Paul Young (author of The Shack) has written a new book, Lies We Believe about God. If anyone had any doubt about the unbiblical positions he implied strongly in The Shack, this book removes all doubt, in that he comes right out and admits to those positions. A short review of this book is found here.

I would not advise anyone to see the movie who does not know the Scriptures well enough to discern truth from error. My wife Janet made a very short statement that pretty much summarizes the movie:  "God is love, and sin doesn't matter." It would be difficult to be much more profound than that.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Does Belief in Creation Disqualify Mike Pence?

It is becoming more and more obvious that those who have no legitimate argument very quickly resort to name-calling, mockery, and ridicule. Vice President-Elect Mike Pence has become the target of such predictable nonsense. He is being accused of being “anti-science” because he has the wisdom and common sense to reject evolution and believe in the Creator. In reality, there is nothing scientific about believing that order came from chaos, design came from randomness, life came from non-life, etc. The whole idea of evolution is preposterous and totally anti-science.

In the minds of some, belief in creation disqualifies an individual from running for public office. Such an idea is absurd, since what it is really saying is that someone cannot possibly do a good job as a leader if he has the wisdom to believe in the obvious fact that all things had to have had an origin, and that origin ultimately goes back to God. If someone is gullible enough to believe the universe and all it contains, including life, came about by time, chance, and natural processes, that would seem to be a greater disqualifier than believing in the Creator, because one would hope that our public servants have some level of wisdom and common sense.

Does belief in Creation disqualify Mike Pence, or any other politician, from holding public office? Of course not!

I addressed this issue in another post back in 2015.