Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My Values in American Society

Voting according to how a candidate stands on issues is important, but I think how they stand on values in American society today is more important.

Four years is a long time and the issues will change, but the values of the candidate should not change. Decisions on the current issues and the emerging issues should be guided by the same value system.

So I have decided to announce today that I will NOT be running for the office of President of the United States, but if I did, these are the values in American society today that I would take with me.

1. Jesus is the ONLY way to God!

2. Life begins at conception.

3. Don't spend more than you make.

4. Walk softly and carry the biggest stick.

5. The Consitution is the law of the land. If you don't like it, then change it, BUT don't ignore it.

Now, those seem pretty obvious to me, but for some reason Washington D.C. (on BOTH sides of the isle) keeps making laws and rules that violate all of the above values in American Society.

I have read the end of The Book and it says that we as a people fail miserably. So far I think we are right on track to do just that.

So what are your values in American society?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Oprah Jealous God | Bill Maher

Bill Maher and Oprah have a common problem. They are both hung up on the Bible verses that say, "God is a jealous God."

The problem is due to the way the negative connotation of the word "jealous" is predominate in our society today. However, there is a positive and a negative side to the word. Both sides are noted in scripture.

In Gal 5:20 jealousy is listed as an act of a sinful nature.

In 2 Cor 11:2 Paul refers to a jealousy for others, indicating a relationship that he is zealous to keep.

So the word "jealous" actually means an exclusive single-mindedness of emotion which may be morally blameworthy or praiseworthy.

The good or the bad connotation is dependent upon whether the object of the jealousy is the self or a cause beyond the self.

If the object is the self then envy is the rusult.

If the object is a cause beyond the self then the result is a single-minded persuit of a good end.

An example would be the marriage covenant, where a jealousy for the exclusiveness of the relationship is a necessary condition of its permanence.

Howie53's response on YouTube says it way better than I.

Howie53 Gets It Right

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Jesus With The Poor

Jesus with the poor is the source of the greatest spiritual revelation of the meaning of a scripture given to me. In Luke 12:33 Jesus says, "Sell your possessions and give to the poor."

You might immediately think this is the story of the rich young ruler, but it is not. If you go back to verse 22, you will see Jesus is addressing His disciples.

If He is addressing His disciples and I want to be a disciple then He is addressing me. So I began to think, what do I possess? I own a coat, a car, my kid's clothes, etc. These are things we need. Renting them is not an option.

On the surface this looks like a stupid statement, but the Jesus I know does not make stupid statements. There must be more to this than I am seeing.

I began to read commentaries and really try to think this through, but nothing could resolve this statement into a logical, meaningful message.

I ran across the story of Tolstoy, who was a wealthy Russian who converted to Christianity and sold all his stuff and gave it to the poor. After a short while the poor had consumed everything and all was gone. Also, the employees of his old farm were all miserable because the new owners were not as benevolent as Tolstoy.

I did not find meaning, I found proof! This is a stupid statement!

Jesus with the poor.

So I yelled at the Holy Spirit. He is supposed to be my teacher and I needed teaching. Immediately this thought came into my mind (not words in my ears, but a thought in my head), "God owns everything, we merely manage."

Putting these two thoughts together brings us a new question. If I am living as if God owns everything and I merely manage, then what is it I own that I need to sell? Nothing!

And if I am not living this way, then what is my instruction?

Sell what you think you own, because it has become an idol to you.

What do I do with the proceeds of the sale?

Give it away, so that you don't get tempted to buy something else that you think you own and fall back into the same idolatrous trap.

It is all about ownership. Who is in charge? Looking at the following verse Jesus says, "by doing this we will lay up treasure in Heaven." This is not a one for one exchange where the people who give the most on earth will get the most in Heaven. It is an attitude of how to live, which is equally available and equally beneficial to us all.

Jesus with the poor has educated me on the correct attitude toward giving.