Monthly Archives: February 2012

Getting a Cup of Joe in Heaven

I have a little coffee humor to pass on for your consumption  today.  This involves both politics and religion which if you have followed me for very long, you know that I cover both and believe that we should all be engaging each other in open dialogue and debate.  This is humor so leave your doctrinal and political ideas and the back burner and enjoy.    Regular Joe

Having arrived at the Gates of Heaven,
Barrack Obama meets a man with a beard.
‘Are you Mohamed?’ he asks.
‘No my son, I am St. Peter; Mohamed is higher up.’
Peter then points to a ladder that rises into the clouds.Delighted that Mohamed should be higher than St. Peter,
Obama climbs the ladder in great strides,
climbs up through the clouds and comes into a room
where he meets another bearded man.He asks again, ‘Are you Mohamed?’
‘Why no,’ he answers, ‘I am Moses;
Mohamed is higher still.’Exhausted, but with a heart full of joy
he climbs the ladder yet again.

He discovers a larger room where he meets an
angelic looking man with a beard.
Full of hope,he asks again,
‘Are you Mohamed?’

‘No, I am Jesus,the Christ;
you will find Mohamed higher up.’

Mohamed higher than Jesus!
Man, oh man! Obama can hardly contain his
delight and climbs and climbs ever higher.

Once again, he reaches an even larger room
where he meets this truly magnificent looking man
with a silver white beard and once again repeats his question:

‘Are you Mohamed?’ he gasps as he is by now
totally out of breath from all his climbing.
‘No, my son, I am Almighty God, the Alpha and the Omega,
but you look exhausted.
Would you like a cup of coffee?’

Obama says, ‘Yes please!’
As God looks behind him, he claps his hands and yells out:
‘Hey, Mohamed, two coffees!’

Keep your trust in God;
your president is an idiot.

Who Is God? Part 3

Good Morning from the Bitterroot Valley

The sun is gone and a winter storm is moving in this morning.  High clouds are overhead and the front has covered Saint Mary’s Peak in shades of white and gray. 

This series of devotionals has turned into quite an endeavor and as usual anytime you start teaching something you usually learn a whole lot more than the one that are following.

I have been doing a lot of reading of Islamic materials the last couple of days.  Like most religions there are a variety of sects, divisions and offshoots that teach differing doctrines.  In this series the question has been “who is God?” and ultimately that the question that has to be answered to decide whether they are on the right path.

Islam does not recognize the Trinity or three aspects of God.  They do not accept that Christ is God but only a prophet.  Many people say that the God of Islam is the God of the Jews and Christians.  Where does that path lead?

I don’t want to appear to be singling out Pastor Rick Warren and the Saddleback Church as they are certainly not the only church or denomination that is going down this road; however they are definitely the most recent to make headlines in recent weeks.

And article in the Orange County Register[1]  was published on February 23 2012 and updated on the 27th has some interesting information that I would like to share.

 The Rev. Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest and one of America’s most influential Christian leaders, has embarked on an effort to heal divisions between evangelical Christians and Muslims by partnering with Southern California mosques and proposing a set of theological principles that includes acknowledging that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.

I believe that this is a dangerous and unbiblical direction that not only Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California has chosen but many other denominations and churches.  The article continues: Read the rest of this entry

Who Is God? Part 2

Good Tuesday Morning Guys;

Did you ever say something and then wish you could change your words later?  As I was working on a project in the shop yesterday morning I found myself thinking about the blog post, “Who is God? Part 1”.  I was thinking to myself it sounded like I was going to try to describe God in 5 easy lessons or something.  I haven’t had any comments to that effect but am kind of surprised.  Anyway I was just looking for a catchy title to talk about the topic is the God of the Bible the same as Allah, of Islam.  Can Christianity and Islam be merged into Chrislam?  Is it true, as some prominent politicians and religious leaders have said that Jews, Christians and Muslims all worship the same God?

If you recall, yesterday we looked at chapter one of Genesis.  Today I would like to look at John 1:1-14  

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2 He was with God in the beginning.3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. Read the rest of this entry

Who is God? Part 1

Good Morning Regular Joes and Janes

I have been reading a lot lately regarding the Muslim religion of Islam and it’s effect on the Western world.  Courts in this country are beginning to allow defense motions of Sharia law arguments in trials.  Churches and major denominations are talking about “merging the best of Islam and Christianity in harmony”; known as Chrislam.  A lack of sound doctrine and knowledge of Islam is at the root of all of this.

This week I would like to do a series of devotionals around the topic.  To really understand the issue we first need to look at who God really is.

Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

The Creation of Adam

In the beginning of the world, God already existed and created it all.  In the rest of Genesis chapter 1 the creation is explained.  It says that He created it in six days and rested on the seventh.  The Hebrew text uses the word for 24 hour day, and verse 5 says: God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning–the first day.  Now I am not going into a long argument on Evolution vs Creation here this morning.  I just have a few points to make.

  1. When the Bible is talking in allegory it is made clear.
  2. The first chapter of Genesis is given as actual events not an allegory.
  3. If each ‘day were thousands or millions of years then half of each of the period was dark and half was light; not to good for living  things.
  4. Chapter 1 of Genesis argues for a “hands on” God.  He was personally involved in each aspect of the creation and as He completed it, declared it to “Be Good”, in other words that He had done a good job on it.

At the conclusion of Chapter 1 are these verses:

28 God blessed them and said to them,  “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” 29 Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.  30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground–everything that has the breath of life in it–I give every green plant for food.” And it was so. 31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.  And there was evening, and there was morning–the sixth day.

On the sixth day God gave all a command to be fruitful and multiply and also to fill the earth and subdue it.  We are to rule over every fish of the sea and bird and every living creature.  It also states that every living plant and tree is under our control.   God placed man and woman here as tenants to care for the earth and that all these things were created for our pleasure and use.

Tomorrow and in the rest of the week I will  cover more on who God is and who “Allah” of Islam is.  What does the Bible say are the characteristics of God and what does the Quran say the characteristics of Allah are.  The big question is are they two different names for the same Creator or not?  I have a link for an article regarding the move to merge Christianity and Islam below; and if you think this is an isolated case, think again.  I have been surprised at the names that I have found related to this movement.

  Rick Warren builds bridge to Muslims –

English: PressKit photo of Rick Warren

Image via Wikipedia

Now don’t get me wrong!  I am not saying we should be hating muslims who follow Islam.  What I asking is are they fellow worshipers of the one true God or should we be witnessing to them about the one true God.  Without understanding who our God is and who they are worshiping, you can’t answer this question.

Regular Joe

Quote of the Day;

“If you are not prepared to defend civilization, then be prepared to accept barbarism.”

Thomas Sowell

Do You Like to Have Your Ears Tickled?

In 2 Timothy, Paul is writing to him, (Timothy) and in chapter 4 is encouraging and commissioning him in his ministry. Paul is chained in a cold prison in Rome under the Emperor Nero about 66 or 67 A.D.  Almost 2000 years later it sounds like it was written yesterday.

Tradition say that this is the prison in Rome that Paul was in.

2 Timothy 4

1 In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge:  2 Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage–with great patience and careful instruction. 3 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.  4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.  5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.  6 For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure.  7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  8 Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day–and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

  1. I find it interesting that Paul is viewing Christ’s appearing and kingdom as emanate.
  2. He tells Timothy to preach the Word in season and out of season.  I understand this to be whether it is popular or not.  I think there is also a reference to whether or not you expect fruit.  In talking about the season, depending on the plant, in a certain season you would expect to have fruit.  But Timothy is encouraged to teach in season and out of season.  Notice also that he specifies what to preach; correction, rebuke, and encouragement.  I often am told that we are not to judge others, however it is impossible to talk to someone about correcting there ways without having judged or determined whether they are doing something that needs correction.
  3. Verses 3 and 4 sound a lot like today.  People stay away from church in large numbers in part because they think churches are too judgmental or legalistic.  Sure we that are in the church could be better at the sharing in love and teaching “with great patience”, but I believe a lot of people fall in the category of not put up with sound doctrine, wanting to fulfill their own goals.  People will fill large auditoriums to hear a “religious teacher” or “spiritual guide” tell them that some myth or other form of self-fulfillment will make them feel better about their life.
  4. We as disciples of Christ on the other-hand are to be in control in all situations, be willing to endure hardships and share the gospel message every chance we get.
  5. So what do we get out of all this hard work and suffering?  I think Paul sums it up pretty well in the closing verses of this chapter.  He was in Nero’s cold dark prison in Rome and knew his days were coming to an end.  In verses 6 through 8 he states that his life is being poured out of him.   He knows that it is his time to die.  Paul compares his life to a runner who has finished a race.

I still remember running track in junior high school and even winning some races.   You don’t win races by holding back and taking it easy.  You win races by expending every last bit of energy you have.  Good runner cross the finish line totally exhausted, sometimes even physically sick, because they have given everything they have to finish the best they are able.  Paul does not sound afraid or even sad.  He is confident in his future, looking forward to his day of judgment before the Lord knowing that he has done his best.

How are you doing in the race of life?

Are we fighting the good fight or are we just wanting to have our ears tickled?  If you lay dying today would you say to those at your side; “I have fought the good fight, finished the race, kept the faith”?  Are you confident to stand before the Lord at the judgment knowing your reward?

These are some really personal questions that only you can answer.   Jesus Christ can give a peace that surpasses anything man can understand.  Peace that allows a man to lay dying in a prison to be happy and free in his spirit.  I am not sure that I have that yet.

Regular Joe

Inspiration for Today

If we discover a desire within us that nothing in this world can satisfy, also we should begin to wonder if perhaps we were created for another world.  C. S. Lewis (1898 – 1963), Mere Christianity

%d bloggers like this: