.........................."We must be global Christians with a global vision because our God is a global God." - John Stott

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"Sex, God & Katy Perry"

After allowing a revealing cover story titled "Sex, God & Katy Perry" in the recent edition of Rolling   Stone magazine, Katy Perry, (formerly Katy Hudson) told Christianity Today that she is still a Christian.

The Christianity Today article, published August 6, 2010, related that Perry was raised in a Christian home “where both parents considered themselves pastors and where speaking in tongues was commonplace for the entire family.”

Perry is quoted saying,
"My mom and dad practice ‘tongues and interpretation’ together—my dad speaks in tongues, and my mom interprets it…That’s their gift. Speaking in tongues is as normal to me as ‘Pass the salt. A lot of religions use meditation or chanting as a subliminal prayer language, and speaking in tongues isn’t that different—it’s a secret, direct language to God. If I felt intuitively that I had to pray for some situation, but I didn’t rationally understand it, I just let my spirit pray for it.”

A commenter to the article wrote,
“It sounds like Ms Perry is exploring through life. With our prayers and her open heart, she will see her life with the everlasting illumination of Christ.”

No, She might be "exploring," but that doesn't mean she has an open heart. In fact, my take on it was that her heart is closed to all the might interfere with what she thinks she wants - stardom. (...Apparently Psalty the Songbook and Charity Churchmouse weren't part of her audio/video library while growing up :)

There is plenty of Scripture urging young people to trust and obey - This is just two of many:

"Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse, who leave the straight paths to walk in dark ways, who delight in doing wrong, and rejoice in the perverseness of evil."
Proverbs 2: 12-14

…"then they will call to me but I will not answer; they will look for me but will not find me. Since they hated knowledge and would not fear the Lord."
Proverbs 1: 28-29

There is no way to the Father but through Jesus. Some churches and people try to bend that and pretend it isn't true. Well, God had laid it all on the carpet and made his will exceedingly clear. He has also given us the Freedom to make our own decisions - with the understanding that will have to accept complete responsibility for those decisions.

I've raised several children, some of whom went on to "explore." The devastation that came as a result of some of their choices, their turning their backs on the Holy Spirit, is undeniable.

Katy and her family claim to speak in tongues. While I do believe in tongues, I don't believe that most of what we see today is of the Holy Spirit. Tongues is said to be an indication that the person has received the Holy Spirit. We can't judge a person’s heart, but we'd be foolish not to keep our eyes open, discerning fruit and watching for wolves. Scripture is very clear concerning sexual immorality. Yet, Katy apparently feels no shame in posing for this magazine. If the Holy Spirit were active in her heart, she would have felt terrible about exposing herself.

See: "Slain in the Spirt, is it for real?"

My guess - and it's true that I do not know a person's heart - but my guess based on what I see, hear, know of God's Word and have experienced, - is that Katy, an obviously perky actress, (much like one of my daughters) knew how to "act as if." She did what was expected of her while growing up – ie, speaking in tongues. That, or, if she was never filled with the Spirit, she might not be aware of what it feels like to filled with or walk in the Spirit. Therefore, she might not have been aware that she wasn’t actually experiencing it.

I have raised several children, some of whom were foster kids. Some children have known just how to act in church and around me. But their hearts were far from both me and God. It wasn't until too late that I discovered they were leading two lives. I suspect many Christian parents have experienced the same thing. The temptations our children experience are overwhelming compared to what children experienced 50 years ago.

Further, I've seen adults on many occasions push children to speak in tongues - telling themselves and the kids that the Holy Spirit will come if you just "open your mouth" and "do the work." The belief is that by opening your mouth and making sounds, you are "showing your faith" and opening your heart to God and tongues.

Well, I do believe in tongues and I have prayed for them. But after seeing this method used again and again - and noticing the FRUIT of many of those that claim to speak in tongues - in particular the teens and the youth groups, etc, I determined that when God deems it time for me, it will be the Holy Spirit that does the work. Not me nor man.

In all honesty - the promiscuity etc that I have seen in various "tongue speaking" teens has seriously made me doubt the presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives as well as the wisdom of the adults pushing these methods.

Having learned the hard way, our family has made changes with the younger children. We don't jump head first into every Christian youth event that comes along. Not all of them are healthy, and not all the adults acting as mentors should be mentors. I am also more observant of my younger kids, talk to them more, and listen better.

No more pretend. My desire is that my children truly, truly learn what it is to honor and serve the Lord and to have the Holy Spirit in their hearts. From that understanding, they can make an informed decision as to whether they want to be Christians or not.

Call me what you will, but the knowledge that Katy's mother called herself a pastor, and all five of them spoke in tongues, but Katy's life does not appear to reflect the Holy Spirit or God's Word, well...'I'm just sayin.'

That evidence is enough for me to have serious doubts that this family really understood God. That's sad to say, because they might have had the best intentions and really believed they were doing the right things. But Scripture says that there will be many who will in the end say, "Lord, Lord..."

So I agree that we need to pray for Katy and her family. But I do not agree that Katy has an open heart, or that all will come out fine in the end. We are not to judge others in a condemning sense, but James 5:19 is clear that we are to confront sin and error out of love and to save lives.


Christianity Today August 6, 2010


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Jeremiah Wright's Anti-semetic Palm Sunday Sermon


World Net Daily, April 2, 2010  
 - Ellis Washngton

"The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing "God Bless America." No, no, no, God damn America, that's in the Bible for killing innocent people. God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human. God damn America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme." ~ Jeremiah Wright (2003 sermon)
As I drove up to Hartford Memorial Baptist Church in Detroit last Sunday, I knew something big was going to happen this day. How did I know? Because I couldn't get a parking place within three blocks of the church. What was going on?

I got my answer as I looked at who was seated in the pulpit: none other than the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright, pastor Emeritus of Trinity United Church of Christ, Chicago, Ill., whose church Barack and Michelle Obama attended for 20 years as members.

My pastor, the Rev. Dr. Charles G. Adams, and Jeremiah Wright have been very good friends for over 35 years. Both pastors came of age during the 1960s and the civil-rights era. Both pastors are big-city liberal Democrats, believers in redistributive wealth, unionism, social justice and liberation theology – applying Marxist politics and economic philosophy to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Initially, as I listened to Dr. Wright with my 13-year-old son, Stone, using his Bible, I was expecting a non-political, non-controversial sermon, but that was a fool's dream. Rev. Wright's messaged was titled, "What You Can't See!" based on the following passage from 2 Kings 6:8-17:

“Then the king of Syria warred against Israel, and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp.
“And the man of God sent unto the king of Israel, saying, Beware that thou pass not such a place; for thither the Syrians are come down.
“And the king of Israel sent to the place which the man of God told him and warned him of, and saved himself there, not once nor twice.
“Therefore the heart of the king of Syria was sore troubled for this thing; and he called his servants, and said unto them, Will ye not shew me which of us is for the king of Israel?
“And one of his servants said, None, my lord, O king: but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber.
“And he said, Go and spy where he is, that I may send and fetch him. And it was told him, saying, Behold, he is in Dothan.
“Therefore sent he thither horses, and chariots, and a great host: and they came by night, and compassed the city about.
“And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do?
“And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.
“And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.”
Despite the thunderous shouts of Amen! Praise the Lord! Hallelujah! and hysterical laughter in response to Rev. Wright's sermon, I knew in my heart that this man standing before me in the pulpit was deceitful to core; a false prophet perverting the word of God like no other person I had ever witnessed.

For example, I heard Rev. Wright read the well-known biblical passage above, but the political spin he put on it was quite outrageous. Here is a synopsis of how Wright arranged the biblical narrative to apply to contemporary American politics:
• Syria-Israel War = America-Iraq War;
• King of Syria = President George W. Bush;
• Operation Capture Elisha = Operation Desert Storm;
• Prophet Elisha = Saddam Hussein (an innocent man with no WMDs);
• Syrian Army = U.S. military (i.e., an evil pagan army hell-bent on capturing the man of God);
• Syria's servants = President George Bush military and political advisers;
• Elisha's servants = black Americans whose eyes needed to be open about how evil and irredeemable the US of KKKA is.
To atone for his radicalism, Rev. Wright ended his sermon with the ubiquitous three points: 1) You are not alone; 2) God is at work on your behalf; and 3) You have nothing to be afraid of.

But of course, dear reader, America has quite a lot to be afraid of due to the shameful complicity and political cover up the liberal media provided Obama and his mentors, like Frank Marshall Davis, Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn and Jeremiah Wright. We did not so much vote for a candidate in November 2008, but America voted for a revolution, a revolutionary hell-bent on deconstructing all that is good, honorable and patriotic; a fascist seeking to destroy America from within so as to remake this wonderful country into his own Marxist image.

For those of you who still believe that one can sit in Rev. Wright's church of hate for 20 years and not be affected, compare the outrageous treatment Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu received to the anti-Semitic rant of Rev. Wright who said:
The Israelis have illegally occupied Palestinian territories for over 40 years now. Divestment has now hit the table again as a strategy to wake the business community and wake up Americans concerning the injustice and the racism under which the Palestinians have lived because of Zionism.

Ellis Washington is former editor of the Michigan Law Review and law clerk at The Rutherford Institute. He hosts a radio program Thursdays at 11 a.m. Eastern on 1620 AM in Atlanta. It can be heard online at the Radio Sandy Springs website. His weekly podcasts are available Mondays at The Conservative Beacon. Washington is a graduate of John Marshall Law School and a lecturer and freelance writer on constitutional law, legal history and critical race theory. He has written over a dozen law review articles and several books, including "The Inseparability of Law and Morality: The Constitution, Natural Law and the Rule of Law" (2002). Washington's latest book is "The Nuremberg Trials: Last Tragedy of the Holocaust."

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Atheists Using Hair Dryers for 'De-Baptism?'

U.S. Atheists Reportedly Using Hair Dryers to 'De-Baptize'  
Published July 17, 2010 | NewsCore

According to Nightline, the leader wore a monk's robe and said a few mock-Latin phrases before inviting participants to "come forward now and receive the spirit of hot air that taketh away the stigma and taketh away the remnants of the stain of baptismal water."

Then he “blasted his fellow non-believers with the hair dryer to symbolically dry up the holy water sprinkled on their heads in days past. The styling tool was emblazoned with a label reading "Reason and Truth."

The leader told the Nightline that he believes parents are wrong to baptize their children before they are able to make their own choices, and slammed some religious education as "child abuse." He said the blast of hot air was a way for adults to undo what their parents had done.

A 24-year-old said, "I was baptized Catholic. I don't remember any of it at all," said "According to my mother, I screamed like a banshee ... so you can see that even as a young child I didn't want to be baptized. It's not fair. I was born atheist, and they were forcing me to become Catholic."

Ironically, the leaders own son became a fundamentalist Christian minister after having "a personal revelation in Jesus Christ."

"One wonders where they went wrong," he chuckled to Nightline.


Wow. That brings up some interesting questions!

- Does baptizing a child in the Catholic church force them to be Catholic as adults?
- I gave birth to some kids in Montana: Did I abusivley force them to be Montanans?
- I gave most of the kids dance lessons; Did I force the girls to be Ballerinas? What about the boys?
- Should there be a limit to what a parent can introduce to a child or educate a child in, in case they won't like it when they grow up?
- Or is it okay for a parent to offer academic and creative opportunities, just so long as nothing spiritual is involved?
- What about the child that might say later...'Mom, now that I am an adult, you are telling me that you knew about 'Jesus Christ'...and that you experienced all kinds of answers to prayer from the Holy Spirit during the time I was growing up...but you never told me about it? You watched me struggle through my teen years, yet never once showed Me how to pray? Why?'

Hopefully the participants didn't pay their snake-oil leader anything for the "De-baptism."  After all, going through a ritual ”de-baptizing” and making the kinds of statements these people made… are they even truly atheists?

1) "He said the blast of hot air was a way for adults to undo what their parents had done."
- Excuse me, but what did the parents do? If there is no God, how was their Baptism any different from washing their child’s hair? What is he "undoing?" Wouldn’t one have to believe in something Spiritual in order to "undo" what was done?

2) "I was born atheist, and they were forcing me to become Catholic."
- Are some people born atheist, and others not? Why? How does one know if they were born atheist?

Or....is everyone born with an innate understanding that God exists? ...Or....

- If he really WAS born atheist…AND from the time of conception never had any kind of spiritual connection, how did he have a ‘sense’ that he didn’t want to have the baptism done?

3) The 24-yr-old, still wet behind the ears, said, "According to my mother, I screamed like a banshee ... so you can see that even as a young child I didn't want to be baptized."
a) - As a very young child, did he know he was getting 'baptized’ and that it carried a religious connotation? If he was too young to ‘know’, how did he 'sense' that this was something spiritual that he didn't want done?
b) - Ok, if it wasn't a spiritual sense…maybe he just didn’t like getting wet. My 4-yr-old grandson still screams like a banshee when his hair is washed. Does the fact he doesn't want it washed mean he has a right to not have it done? Is his mother abusing him by forcing him to have clean hair?
c) OR – did he have a spiritual sense, but didn’t want to accept the Spirit of God as his authority. Instead, what he is saying is that even as a baby, he wanted to choose another spiritual leadership. In which case, he’s still not an atheist, because even satan believes in God.

Methinks they protest too much. Obviously, the very fact that they are doing this “ritual” and making the statements they made testifies to the fact that they do believe in the supernatural.

Follow up Questions…

a) When is someone old enough to honestly believe in God? Is there a set age, or does it depend on the person?

b) What do we believe, then, about children that die in infancy?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

"Why Does God allow Suffering?"

I recently shared with my sister a blog my pastor had written concerning God and the suffering in this world.

I was excited about this blog because my sister had told me just two weeks earlier that she can not honor or follow a God that allows innocent children to suffer horribly.

You know the debate… “How can God be all powerful and loving, yet allow the horrors of disease, war, famine, and natural disasters?” If “God is good all the time” – as the song says…then how come there is so much suffering in this world?

In response, Pastor quoted verses from Job that expressed Job would rather die than continue suffering;
“Why is light given to those in misery, and life to the bitter of soul, to those who long for death that does not come, who search for it more than for hidden treasure, who are filled with gladness and rejoice when they reach the grave? Why is life given to a man whose way is hidden, whom God has hedged in?” (Job 3:20-23)

Pastor brought up a great point. He said,
“…we must remember where suffering came from. It actually came from us. When humanity rebelled against God and chose to rule the world in our own wisdom apart from God, the earth and our labors were cursed. …under man’s care apart from God…Weeds began to grow and choke out nutritious plants. Viruses and bacteria mutated into harmful diseases. People no longer provided themselves with the proper nutrition and habits that promoted optimal health. Jealousy and carnal appetites drove humanity to murder, rape, slavery and host of other cruel sins. Earth itself began to quake and unleash cataclysmic disasters upon man.
“Humanity’s choice to call the shots and be like God has had horrendous effects …ever since. If we want to understand suffering, then we must understand that …Humanity brought on its own suffering through our rebellion against God, which started in the Garden of Eden.”

Pastor summed that up suggesting “Perhaps God allows suffering to emphasize the horror of sin and our desperate need of Him. Maybe that’s one reason God allows suffering.”

Great point. Man made a decision to be independent, run his own life outside of God's direction and guidance. As a result, without a recognized higher power to look up to - or submit to - Man starts in with all those human things - trying to be top dog over each other, etc.

So in deciding to rebel, Man brought in sin and all that comes with it. In greed, pride, self-indulgence... Man’s desire to be a top dog over everyone else means that innocent people will get hurt.

God wants better for us, but he gave us Free will, even though that Free will pains him to watch

The next point Pastor brought up was even better. We are asking why God allows children to suffer horribly, or any innocent for that matter.

Yet Jesus, his son – an innocent whom he could have intervened for - suffered horribly before his death. Jesus - who actually told God the Father in the garden that he really didn't want to do this.

God so loved the World that he sent his only Son....

Jesus’ purpose from the very beginning was to be our sacrificial lamb, the only way through which we could reconcile with the father and come back into relationship with Him. Jesus died for our sins.

But along with being the promised sacrificial lamb, was Jesus' horrible death - Jesus who was completely innocent of sin - meant to show us that God the Father, who loves us so much and hates to see our suffering…was willing to ...partake in the suffering with us? To cry with us?

Did Jesus come in the flesh and die suffering as he did - as a way to show us that God is walking with us in the pain, knows how it feels, and that He is suffering with us?

In other words, suffering is all about our own sin….a progressive result of ignoring God's guidance. The children are suffering as a direct result of human rejection of God and His wisdom…they are suffering because of our selfishness and lack of compassion for each other. Not God’s.

Is it not about God allowing suffering, but about God allowing Man Free Will?

My sister shot the explanation down with one crisp sentence;

“So if God has a non-interference policy, then having a God is exactly the same as not having a God.”
But... it's not a non-interference policy. Jesus healed much suffering. But she's right in that...for some, the suffering continues despite much prayer.

Sigh.  Okay…so Part II coming up…”Why God answers some prayers to alleviate suffering, and not others?