Thursday, February 18, 2010

Spiritual Randomness

I always talk about sports this way. . . . but this has been kind of a mentally draining week. . . so we're going to go random on biblical stuff that's on my mind these days.

--- Spiritual and biblical relativism is not biblical. You can't make the case from scripture that God and Jesus are different people than They say They are in the scriptures. If you're going to make a statement about who Jesus is (as many in our day do). . . it needs to line up with whom Jesus says that He is. So many people say that Jesus doesn't judge or condemn, and is all about peace. But, in the gospels Jesus has unbelievably harsh things to say to the Pharisees and others; He also claims to be God, so other religions that don't see Him as God are not compatible with Christianity. . . why? because Christ says that He is God.

--- Guys, if you're not serving your wife and helping her when she asks, I think you're giving in to demonic forces. Yes, I just said that. You know why I think so? Because if any other friend asked me to give him a ride, or grab him something at the store, etc. . . .I would do it in a heartbeat. Why is it a struggle to help my wife when she asks me for similar things? Why do I have to think about it? Demonic. (The enemy is after our marriages, I could tell you story after story from our church. We had 3 wives leave their husbands in the last month, for instance. Since we aren't under physical persecution as the church in America, I believe one of the main ways the enemy is after us is in our marriages)

--Having said that, Wives, if you're asking your husband to do things that you could very well do yourself, or playing mental "does he love me?" games by asking him to do things. . . I don't think that's the most honest, mature, or biblical way to treat your husband. Sometimes wives are taking the biblical commands for husbands as an excuse to be irresponsible, or worse, immature. Just so you know, . . many guys have a wound in this area from the past, or from other relationships where they were manipulated and mistreated. So, the "love" question won't get answered from a wounded man begrudingly doing things for you. And, there's a respect and honesty issue there as well.

--Having said that, Husbands, . . . you're called to "cherish" your wife, "care" and "provide" for her. That means that you'll need to cut it out and get up and help. We also are able to clean up vomit, . . we also are able to do laundry. I think I'm finally getting what the "weaker vessel" verse(1 Peter 3:7) means in regard to our wives. Maybe it is mainly an emotional "weakness" that needs to be shown love to believe it at times. Guys, biblically we're called to this. It says our prayers will be hindered if were not caring, cherishing, and loving our wives. And, If you need some healing in this area (see above) you should pursue that.

--Bottom line, both spouses are often looking to fill their love tank with each other (hmmm. . some quasi-biblical book talks about that) when we should be looking to the full tank that we've received from Christ and love each other out of that. It's like we've been given a billion dollar bank account that from time to time, our spouse will withdraw some money when they mistreat us. No worries. . .we have a billion dollars!!!! Stop playing games with each other. . . you have a billion dollars.

--Hey, "Psalms only", "no instruments in worship" guys: (if you don't know what I'm talking about. . . trust me. . they're out there).

If we're supposed to only sing the Psalms in worship and not use instruments. . I ask you:

Which is it? Do we sing the Psalms as they are, which include exhortations to use instruments, instructions to sing to the Lord "a new song" and particular imprecatory Psalms against nations that no longer exist? Or do we obey what the Psalms say, and use instruments, write songs, and tell of "all" that the Lord has done (which probably includes modern testimonies, since He's still at work)

The point is, I don't believe the Psalms want us to be "Psalms only". What about Psalms talking about specific places that don't exist anymore. Like in Psalm 60 where the Psalmist asks God "Who will bring me to Edom?" Should we sing that? I guess we could change it a bit so that it's a historial celebration of what God has done in the past. But, then we wouldn't be singing the Psalms verbatim, would we?

Ephesians 5:19 helps us here.

--Sometimes the pastoral thing to do is to rebuke folks for their religion. If it goes as far as legalism, than definitely, a rebuke is needed. But, it pastors no one, and helps no one, if we're silent on these issues, and don't consider them "a hill to die on".

Example: D.A. Carson talks about the issue of alcohol and how if some Christians have a conviction not to drink and hold it charitably, . . .than that's wonderful, we should serve them, not embarrass them and help them in any way we can by not defrauding them.

If they are judging others for their obedient, responsible drinking and drawing lines in the sand (even making it a "you're not a real Christian" issue), or embarrassing them. Then, as Dr. Carson says: "Pass the Port!". Those folks need to be shown and pastored as to what convictions are biblical and what is a charitable way to hold convictions on conscience issues. We should drink in their presence to "heap burning coals" on their heads. Why? Because they're adding to the Gospel, they aren't able to fellowship because of a secondary conviction that they have in their minds (this is to be distinguished from dis-fellowshipping because of un-repentant sin, . . .which we're all called to do as the Church).

We need to correct people in their religion. It's the loving thing to do. If we consider it too much of a "risk" or are afraid of causing trouble. . .we're just letting those folks carry around un-biblical attitudes and convictions and letting them heap it upon others. I call it the "tyranny of the weaker brother". If the weaker brother needs to be served and treated gently (see above) than we should do that. If someone is adding to the gospel and judging others harshly for having different views than themself. . . "Pass the Port!".

Randomness over.

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