Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Two Views of Heaven. . .

The stereotypical image of heaven. . . multitudes of beautiful people robed in white, eternally strumming little lyres, must be of the devil.  As an atheist I thought and as a Christian I still think, “If that is heaven, I want no part of it.”  Such a life to me would quickly. . . in a matter of hours or days, turn into a hell of boredom.

But the Bible tells us:

1 Corinthians 2:9
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

In my imagination, as an eternal resident of heaven, the entire universe becomes my playground. . .Surrounded by beloved brothers and sisters in Christ. . . hopefully surrounded by family members, a thought takes me to majestic panoramas such as this picture. . . .endlessly able to explore strange moons of exotic planets. . . or simpler sequences as I will, of golden afternoons in a quiet forest glade. . . walking cool dim paths along misty wilderness waterfalls. . .intimately observing a fawn’s first breath. . .watching a blue whale being born. . .walking and talking with the Lord in the cool of the day. . .

Heaven will be beyond anything I can imagine. . .all my troubles and tears will pass away. . .

Let us persevere upon our journey. . .
Let us never weary of this path we travel. . .
Let us keep our eyes upon eternity. . .
    and our thoughts upon the mansion our Lord prepares for us. . .

I love you my God. . .
I so look forward to the day when we can truly be reunited. . .

Credit for the image:
NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanks Giving

Here is every verse in the Bible which speaks of 'Thanks giving', and the 'Giving of thanks':

(Leviticus 7:12) If he offer it for a thanksgiving, then he shall offer with the sacrifice of thanksgiving unleavened cakes mingled with oil, and unleavened wafers anointed with oil, and cakes mingled with oil, of fine flour, fried.

(Leviticus 7:13) Besides the cakes, he shall offer for his offering leavened bread with the sacrifice of thanksgiving of his peace offerings.

(Leviticus 7:15) And the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace offerings for thanksgiving shall be eaten the same day that it is offered; he shall not leave any of it until the morning.

(Leviticus 22:29) And when ye will offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving unto the LORD, offer it at your own will.

(2 Samuel 22:50) Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name.

(1 Chronicles 16:8) Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.

(1 Chronicles 16:34) O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.

(1 Chronicles 16:35) And say ye, Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to thy holy name, and glory in thy praise.

(1 Chronicles 16:41) And with them Heman and Jeduthun, and the rest that were chosen, who were expressed by name, to give thanks to the LORD, because his mercy endureth for ever;

(1 Chronicles 25:3) Of Jeduthun: the sons of Jeduthun; Gedaliah, and Zeri, and Jeshaiah, Hashabiah, and Mattithiah, six, under the hands of their father Jeduthun, who prophesied with a harp, to give thanks and to praise the LORD.

(2 Chronicles 31:2) And Hezekiah appointed the courses of the priests and the Levites after their courses, every man according to his service, the priests and Levites for burnt offerings and for peace offerings, to minister, and to give thanks, and to praise in the gates of the tents of the LORD.

(Ezra 3:11) And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.

(Nehemiah 11:17) And Mattaniah the son of Micha, the son of Zabdi, the son of Asaph, was the principal to begin the thanksgiving in prayer: and Bakbukiah the second among his brethren, and Abda the son of Shammua, the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun.

(Nehemiah 12:8) Moreover the Levites: Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and Mattaniah, which was over the thanksgiving, he and his brethren.

(Nehemiah 12:24) And the chief of the Levites: Hashabiah, Sherebiah, and Jeshua the son of Kadmiel, with their brethren over against them, to praise and to give thanks, according to the commandment of David the man of God, ward over against ward.

(Nehemiah 12:27) And at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought the Levites out of all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem, to keep the dedication with gladness, both with thanksgivings, and with singing, with cymbals, psalteries, and with harps.

(Nehemiah 12:46) For in the days of David and Asaph of old there were chief of the singers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving unto God.

(Psalms 6:5) For in death there is no remembrance of thee: in the grave who shall give thee thanks?

(Psalms 18:49) Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and sing praises unto thy name.

(Psalms 26:7) That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.

(Psalms 30:4) Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.

(Psalms 30:12) To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.

(Psalms 35:18) I will give thee thanks in the great congregation: I will praise thee among much people.

(Psalms 50:14) Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High:

(Psalms 69:30) I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.

(Psalms 75:1) To the chief Musician, Altaschith, A Psalm or Song of Asaph. Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.

(Psalms 79:13) So we thy people and sheep of thy pasture will give thee thanks for ever: we will shew forth thy praise to all generations.

(Psalms 92:1) A Psalm or Song for the sabbath day. It is a good thing to give thanks unto the LORD, and to sing praises unto thy name, O most High:

(Psalms 95:2) Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

(Psalms 97:12) Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.

(Psalms 100:4) Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

(Psalms 105:1) O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people.

(Psalms 106:1) Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 106:47) Save us, O LORD our God, and gather us from among the heathen, to give thanks unto thy holy name, and to triumph in thy praise.

(Psalms 107:1) O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 107:22) And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.

(Psalms 116:17) I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.

(Psalms 118:1) O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: because his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 118:29) O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 119:62) At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee because of thy righteous judgments.

(Psalms 122:4) Whither the tribes go up, the tribes of the LORD, unto the testimony of Israel, to give thanks unto the name of the LORD.

(Psalms 136:1) O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 136:2) O give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 136:3) O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 136:26) O give thanks unto the God of heaven: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psalms 140:13) Surely the righteous shall give thanks unto thy name: the upright shall dwell in thy presence.

(Psalms 147:7) Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise upon the harp unto our God:

(Isaiah 51:3) For the LORD shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.

(Jeremiah 30:19) And out of them shall proceed thanksgiving and the voice of them that make merry: and I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small.

(Amos 4:5) And offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving with leaven, and proclaim and publish the free offerings: for this liketh you, O ye children of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.

(Jonah 2:9) But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that that I have vowed. Salvation is of the LORD.

(Mark 14:23) And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it.

(Luke 17:16) And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.

(Luke 22:19) And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.

(John 6:11) And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.

(John 6:23) (Howbeit there came other boats from Tiberias nigh unto the place where they did eat bread, after that the Lord had given thanks:)

(Romans 14:6) He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.

(Romans 16:4) Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.

(1 Corinthians 10:30) For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks?

(1 Corinthians 11:24) And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

(1 Corinthians 14:16) Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest?

(1 Corinthians 14:17) For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified.

(1 Corinthians 15:57) But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

(2 Corinthians 4:15) For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.

(2 Corinthians 9:11) Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.

(2 Corinthians 9:12) For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;

(Ephesians 1:16) Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;

(Ephesians 5:4) Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.

(Ephesians 5:20) Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

(Philippians 4:6) Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

(Colossians 1:3) We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,

(Colossians 1:12) Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:

(Colossians 2:7) Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.

(Colossians 3:17) And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

(Colossians 4:2) Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;

(1 Thessalonians 1:2) We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers;

(1 Thessalonians 5:18) In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

(2 Thessalonians 2:13) But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

(1 Timothy 2:1) I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

(1 Timothy 4:3) Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

(1 Timothy 4:4) For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:

(Hebrews 13:15) By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

(Revelation 4:9) And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever,

(Revelation 7:12) Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

(Revelation 11:17) Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.

We dedicate this day to you my Lord, to especially give thanks to You for all our blessings. Please help us to have a heart of thankfulness every day of the year. . .

I love you my God. . .
I thank you my Lord. . .

Friday, November 16, 2012

360° of Peril

Recently another greatly beloved and highly anointed Pastor fell.  His congregation reeled, greatly wounded from the violent and totally unexpected amputation of their shepherd. . . Really the metaphor of amputation for this, as destructive as that is, is too clean of a process to describe what happens when a pastor is removed from a church in this manner. This is no clean separation as a removal of a limb with a knife, but a tearing away, as in a horrific rending of flesh, with jagged pieces of muscle and skin and bone, rupturing and tearing from the body which could have. . . should have remained forever joined, but even if required to part, would have sustained less damage if performed in an orderly, and planned, cleanly surgical amputation.  

Our church lost its shepherd in such an event, and still feels the effects more than twelve years later.  The trauma to the body of the church in this event is malefic beyond understanding outside of the actual experience. . .

Currently as I type these words, a brilliant, popular, and highly respected former general is publicly disgraced, his decades long career lies in tatters under his feet. . . Beyond the destruction of his career. . . The effect of the horror of this betrayal on his wife and children, yes even adult children. . .their world forever changed. . . their opinion. . . their view of him, never ever to be fully restored.  Once admired by millions and almost universally looked to as an inspiration. . .Who can trust such a man again?  His self-destruction is complete. The rest of his years, will be defined by this immorality.  In the eyes of men, there will be no going beyond this moment.  

How does a beloved pastor. . . a teacher, an expert on the mind and will of God fall into immorality. What causes a general, a man whose life for decades revolved around strict military discipline. . . a patriotic man whose life is forged from duty. . . honor. . . country. . . to take a completely unpatriotic, and selfish path? When such a man abandons his duty. . . shames his honor, and betrays his country. . .What hope is there for me?  When gods are so easily vanquished, what hope remains for mere mortals?

We must learn from the mistakes of others.  We must take warning and learn from those who fall. Daily we walk with spiritual danger on every side. . . Daily we endure 360 degrees of peril. Temptations are found to the front, rear, on each flank. . . even above and below us are paths leading to destruction. That is the scenario of a strategic, and a tactical defeat.  No army can ever survive in such an exposed and weak position, and as Christians, as men and women of righteousness, and honor, we cannot falter. . .Surrender is not an option. We must find a way to prevail.

We must recognize the unfriendly field on which we camp.  In one sense we have no choice.  Until the day of our last breath, we are in the world.  We cannot choose to move to the Promised Land, or the Garden of Eden.  To attempt Heaven before our time, assures us of not gaining it.  To physically escape the world, is impossible, and to attempt to do so, misses the inescapable fact that no matter where we go we carry the world with us, for as much as we are in the world, the world also is within us.

Do you think life would but be perfect, if only you and your family. . . maybe your church family included, would be able to escape to an isolated island?  The escape you long for cannot be seen merely as escape from the worldliness, and the sin without. . . our greatest danger is from the worldliness, and sin within each of us.

The example of the Hebrew’s 40 year desert journey shows us all we need to learn of that type of experiment.  Not possessing a land of their own. . . ever traveling through the wastelands, their greatest problems were not external.  God provided for their physical needs.  It wasn’t other people who caused them the greatest problems, but insurrection, and rebellion arose regularly from within their own tribes. . .from within the Hebrew family itself.  Without the direct intervention of God, these internal strifes would have fragmented the Hebrew people and destroyed them before their nation was even established.

The world is very dangerous to us, so our first priority must be to find a place of safety.  No army, no matter how strong, can survive in a completely exposed and vulnerable position, but we do not have to content ourselves with hiding behind a small bush, or even a large boulder.

Psalms 61:1-4
To the chief Musician upon Neginah, A Psalm of David. Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.  (2)  From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  (3)  For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.  (4)  I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah.

Our God Himself is our protection. The Lord is our castle, our ‘strong tower from the enemy’. . . a shelter for us. . . a rock that is higher than us.

Psalms 91:1-16
He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.  (2)  I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.  (3)  Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.  (4)  He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.  (5)  Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;  (6)  Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.  (7)  A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.  (8)  Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.  (9)  Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;  (10)  There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.  (11)  For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.  (12)  They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.  (13)  Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.  (14)  Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.  (15)  He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.  (16)  With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.

For our safety we must abide in Him, and by this we mean our spiritual safety.  There is no other safety which means anything.

Jesus speaking:

(Matthew 10:28)
And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Too many have enough food to eat, clean water to drink, nice clothes, a nice house. . . a newer car, good health, a job that pays the bills, and by these physical comforts, they judge their lives to be a success, while their souls are filled with darkness.  They know nothing of God and His requirements of righteousness, and holiness.  Thinking themselves safe, in reality they are but one heartbeat from spending eternity in the agonized suffering of hell.

If they could see their lives with spiritual eyes, they are treading on the edge of a crumbling cliff.  The pleasant view lulling them into ignoring the peril if their way. . . The pleasant view of the way, causing them to forget to check the destination at the end of their journey.  

Jesus tells us to ignore the fear of unemployment, or being made homeless. . . but to fear those things which lead us away from God, and kill us spiritually.

2 Timothy 2:1-4
Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.  (2)  And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.  (3)  Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.  (4)  No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.

The disgraced general. . . the beloved pastor who fell, I am convinced that at one time they were men of honor and righteousness, but they allowed themselves to become entangled with things of the world, and thereby lost their spiritual way.  There is no safety in having lived long years for the Lord. Each day brings a new battle, and requires a new commitment to God. We are never granted tenure as Christians.  There is never a point where we may rest upon our reputation, or past accomplishments for the kingdom.

We must constantly be on guard, and actively measure the things we allow into our lives, for their effect upon our relationship with God.

Hebrews 12:1
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

1 Corinthians 9:24-27
Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.  (25)  And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.  (26)  I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:  (27)  But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

We are in a race. . . a battle, and only those who finish the race will be partakers of the prize.  Paul recognized the danger of growing close to the finish line, and losing focus. . . rounding the last bend, and losing the fervency, and dedication. . . the discipleship, and commitment to God which we had when we first started.  Maintain spiritual vigilance as a soldier on watch.  Measure, challenge, and cast out those things from your life, which would supplant God.

Without doubt, the most memorable passage of the Bible regarding, our Christian walk in terms of soldiering the following:

Ephesians 6:10-17
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.  (11)  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  (12)  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.  (13)  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.  (14)  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;  (15)  And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  (16)  Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.  (17)  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

God has given us armor to protect us.  I frequently hear people say that they put on their armour each day. . .But as a soldier, why do you ever remove your spiritual armour?  For I am convinced that the only way that we may be defeated, is if we take off our armor.

At one point the fallen general and pastor, at the minimum must have removed their breastplate of righteousness.  Maybe they thought that their shield of faith, and their helmet of salvation would provide sufficient protection. . . maybe they fooled themselves in that having their loins covered with truth, and having the sword of the Word if God strapped to their side would allow them to prevail, but without the complete suit of armour, the enemy will surely ignore our areas of strength, and commit his attacks on those places we are uncovered.  

Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, and the Word of God. . .We cannot leave any of these components of our battle gear.  With these we must clothe ourselves when we come to God, and on the day of our last breath they must still be found upon us.  There is never a time for a warrior. . . and we are ever warriors. . . There is never a time when all our armour is not needed.

We must recognize ourselves as warriors.  If we do not maintain our vigilance. . . If we fall asleep on our watch. . . If we forget our daily peril. . . If we lapse in our training. . . If we remove pieces of our armour or allow it to fall into disrepair. . . We face an enemy, who will press any advantage we give him. . . who will use any opening or weakness to drive home a fatal attack. . . BUT!

1 John 4:4
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Greater is HE that is in you than he that is in the world. . .The only way we lose is by wilful surrender. . .Our enemy cannot overcome our fortress. . . our armour. . . the righteous General we serve under. . .

I love you my God. . .
I thank you my Lord. . .
  my Protector. . .
  my Salvation. ..
  my Fortress, and my Rock. . .

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Is God Opposed to Abortion?

I struggled with the wording of the title of this article.  After several false starts, I distilled the issue down to the title I have chosen.  Can there be a more important question?  It is a starkly black and white issue.  It is not rightly a political question.  Yes obviously laws are on the books effecting whether abortions can be legally performed, but more fundamentally this is a moral issue, and as a practical matter, one which must be decided by each woman for herself.  Whether something is legal according to man’s law, has nothing to do with the correctness of it in the eyes of God.  Man’s law allows many things which must to be avoided by the Christian.

I am not interested in political correctness.  Many say, that as a man, I have no right to any opinion, but as a preacher of the Word of God, I have a responsibility to educate, and illuminate. . . to speak the Truth regardless of how popular or unpopular it may be.  If I do not warn you of an approaching certain disaster, then I bear the stain your blood upon my hands.

It is not important to me what any denominal organization believes.  It is not important to me what our political leadership says, or philosophers, or what contemporary theologians say. What is God’s standing on the matter?

I hear people who describe themselves as Christian, loudly argue that it is solely a woman’s right to choose life or death for the baby they carry in their wombs.  Really? Is this your opinion? Have you consulted God about this? What is your Biblical basis?  As a Christian have you researched the Word of God on this issue, or is this merely your pride and flesh speaking?

On the pages of my Bible, I can find no verses which support abortion.  I find several which clearly stand in opposition to it.

1. Thou shalt not kill:

Exodus 20:13
Thou shalt not kill.

This most basic of all commandments against abortion, is ignored and supposedly somehow neutralized by the fact that God has killed people Himself (in the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, among other places) , and He also instructed the Hebrew people when entering the Promised Land, that they were to utterly wipe out all the people occupying the lands before them.  This is often used as evidence of God’s injustice, and further evidence that God was responsible for killing children Himself, but let us look at the Hebrew word translated in the 10 Commandments as ‘kill’.  From Strongs Hebrew dictionary we find the word in Exodus 20:13:

A primitive root; properly to dash in pieces, that is, kill (a human being), especially to murder: - put to death, kill, (man-) slay (-er), murder (-er).

This word is found 47 times in 40 verses on the pages of the Old Testament, and here is how it is translated:

slayer 16
murderer 14
kill 5
murder 3
slain 3
manslayer 2
killing 1
slayer + 0310 1
slayeth 1
death 1

Here is a passage in the book of Numbers where the same word in Exodus 20:13 is used and here it is translated ‘murderer’:

Numbers 35:16-19
And if he smite him with an instrument of iron, so that he die, he is a murderer: the murderer shall surely be put to death.  (17)  And if he smite him with throwing a stone, wherewith he may die, and he die, he is a murderer: the murderer shall surely be put to death.  (18)  Or if he smite him with an hand weapon of wood, wherewith he may die, and he die, he is a murderer: the murderer shall surely be put to death.  (19)  The revenger of blood himself shall slay the murderer: when he meeteth him, he shall slay him.

The same word translated as kill in, “Thou shalt not kill” is here translated as “murderer”, and in verse 19 the commandment is to kill the murderer.  God draws a distinct contrast between killing innocents (murder), and the justified judgment of the guilty.

It is quite clear from the above passage and the context of the other verses where this word is used, that the commandment translated in the KJV as: “Thou shalt not kill”, is referring to the unjustified killing of innocents. . . in other words ‘murder’.  God does not command people to break His commandments.  His commandment clearly is against the killing of innocent people.

God’s way is perfect.  There is no injustice in Him.  God gave the promised land to the Hebrew people, not because of their righteousness, or because they were a favorite people to Him, but rather he gave the land to the Hebrew people due to the evil of the people who lived there.

Deuteronomy 9:1-5

Hear, O Israel: Thou art to pass over Jordan this day, to go in to possess nations greater and mightier than thyself, cities great and fenced up to heaven,  (2)  A people great and tall, the children of the Anakims, whom thou knowest, and of whom thou hast heard say, Who can stand before the children of Anak!  (3)  Understand therefore this day, that the LORD thy God is he which goeth over before thee; as a consuming fire he shall destroy them, and he shall bring them down before thy face: so shalt thou drive them out, and destroy them quickly, as the LORD hath said unto thee.  (4)  Speak not thou in thine heart, after that the LORD thy God hath cast them out from before thee, saying, For my righteousness the LORD hath brought me in to possess this land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD doth drive them out from before thee.  (5)  Not for thy righteousness, or for the uprightness of thine heart, dost thou go to possess their land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee, and that he may perform the word which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

One of the many dark evils practiced by the people of the land, was the sacrifice of their own children to the god Molech:

Leviticus 18:21
And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.

Leviticus 20:1-5
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,  (2)  Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.  (3)  And I will set my face against that man, and will cut him off from among his people; because he hath given of his seed unto Molech, to defile my sanctuary, and to profane my holy name.  (4)  And if the people of the land do any ways hide their eyes from the man, when he giveth of his seed unto Molech, and kill him not:  (5)  Then I will set my face against that man, and against his family, and will cut him off, and all that go a whoring after him, to commit whoredom with Molech, from among their people.

The giving of ‘seed unto Molech’. . . the sacrifice of children to Molech.  

The fact that God instructed the Hebrew people to utterly wipe out all the people occupying the lands before them, is often used as evidence of God’s injustice, and further evidence that God was responsible for killing children Himself, but these people among other immoral acts and atrocities, were killing their own children as part of their worship of the god Molech.  God took the lands of these people, and destroyed them to stop this practice.

Therefore, rather being than being an illustration of God’s injustice and an excuse allowing abortion today, the wiping out of the worshippers of Molech and the giving of their land to the Hebrews, vividly shows God’s determination to remove injustice from the world and His hatred for those who abuse their children.  

2. Love thy neighbor as thyself:

Mark 12:28-31
And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?  (29)  And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:  (30)  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.  (31)  And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

Jesus said, “. . .Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”  Can anyone possibly argue that a baby in the womb of the mother, is not the mother’s neighbor?  The very definition of a mother is one of a nurturer, and protectress.  What closer neighbor can there be, than another being, living inside of the shelter of your very own body?  Can one argue that showing godly love to your neighbor is to kill them?  We are to love our fellow man, and that certainly includes babies in the womb.

3. It is about holiness.  It is not about convenience:

Matthew 5:29-30
And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.  (30)  And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

Jesus demands holiness at any cost.  Virtually never are holiness, and righteousness the easiest, and most convenient paths in our lives.  Jesus is clear that holiness must take absolute priority.  An unexpected pregnancy will disrupt and require changes in life, but that is no justification of abortion.

To be a Christian, is not defined as those included on a church’s membership rolls, or those who sit on pews on Sundays, but rather to be a Christian is defined as those who strive to be Christ-like.  Reading Scripture, it is impossible for me to envision Jesus as being in favor of abortion.  He who knows first hand the price of sacrifice for a great purpose, would not be an advocate of sacrifice for convenience. . . In the act of abortion, the baby is sacrificed like Christ, but for vain. . . to no righteous effect. . . the baby’s shed blood pays no debt, but rather creates debt. . .

If  thousands of years ago, God so abhorred the sacrifice of children to Molech that He took their land from them, and commanded the Hebrew people to utterly destroy them, do you think He will somehow accept the unholy sacrifice of our children today?  What retribution awaits us as a society for the killing some approximately 55,000,000 children since abortion was legalized in this country in 1973?

I pray that one woman is reached by this. . .
I pray that one baby is saved from death. . .

I love you my God. . .
I am so sorry for what are doing as a nation. . .
Please forgive us Lord. . .
Please have mercy upon us. . .