Archive for December, 2013

Why Humble Obedience Can Change the World

December 21st, 2013 No comments

mary and gabriel

This is the time of year when finite minds strain under the weight of God’s glory to understand in part what the Incarnation means. God becomes man! How can it be?

Max Lucado helps us to get a tiny glimpse into the magnitude of Christ’s humble obedience as he left heaven’s glory and entered our broken humanity:

“The omnipotent, in one instant, made himself breakable. He who had been spirit became pierceable. He who was larger than the universe became an embryo. And he who sustains the world with a word chose to be dependent upon the nourishment of a young girl. God as a fetus. Holiness sleeping in a womb. The creator of life being created. God was given eyebrows, elbows, two kidneys, and a spleen. He stretched against the walls and floated in the amniotic fluids of his mother” (Lucado, God Came Near, 25-6).

While the humility of Jesus is without comparison, we mustn’t overlook the radical obedience of a terrified teenage girl named, Mary. After a visit from the angel, Gabriel, in which she is informed of God’s plans for her to carry and deliver the Son of God, Mary responds with radical obedience and humility:

Then Mary said, Behold, I am the handmaiden of the Lord; let it be done to me according to what you have said. (Luke 1:38, Amp)

Her acquiescence to this mind-boggling request serves as tangible proof of her faith and love for God. Jesus said, “If you [really] love Me, you will keep (obey) My commands.” ( John 14:15, Amp) Faith and love are always proved by simple obedience to God’s Word.

Mary reminds us of the power of simple devotion to God to help bring about His kingdom purposes in the earth. May we, in a small way, exemplify the same humble obedience to Christ during this amazing Christmas season!


Duck or Ostrich: What will you be serving this Christmas season?

December 19th, 2013 4 comments

ostrichComing home from Midway Airport yesterday, I turned on the Michael Medved Show to occupy my brain while I moved through the bumper-to-bumper Chicago rush hour traffic. While I don’t always agree with Medved, I appreciate his fair and forthright discussion of the hot button issues of our time. My ears perked up when the discussion centered around Phil Robertson, founder of the Duck Commander company and star of A & E’s Duck Dynasty. Evidently Robertson gave an interview to GQ Magazine in which he openly stated homosexuality was a sin. When asked by the interviewer to define sin, Robertson made the following statement:

“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” he says. Then he goes on to offer a paraphrase of the Apostle Paul’s admonition to the Corinthians:

“Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers—they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

Robertson actually did a pretty good job of capturing the essence of 1 Corinthians 6:9-10: “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

Robertson was simply stating the clear teaching of the Bible that homosexuality, and every other form of sexual expression outside of the bounds of monogamous marriage, is a sin.

This is why we should all be alarmed at the response from A & E to suspend him indefinitely for his comments. Have we really reached the place in American culture where we a publicly tarred and feathered for simply proclaiming God’s perspective on aberrant sexual behavior? All Americans, and especially those who call themselves Christians, should be expressing outrage for this trampling of religious liberty.

We need more Phil Robertson’s in the church today. Where are the men and women who will unashamedly stand for truth knowing the PC police will be knocking at your door? We need more “ducks” in the church instead of what we currently have – ostriches! It’s time to take our heads out of the sand and face the harsh reality. If we are not willing to make a stand for sexual purity now, it’s only a matter of time before our “collective goose” is cooked!

Who Speaks for God? The Deafening Silence of the Church and Christian Universities on Marriage

December 16th, 2013 2 comments

christian uniIn a day when everyone is coming out of the closet to express their position on the critical policy issue of whether we should be re-defining what it means to be married, the two institutions who should be speaking the loudest are actually the most silent; namely, our Christian churches and universities. And the silence is deafening!

In recent weeks we have seen a number of our state universities publicly voicing their opposition to the proposed Marriage Amendment (HJR6). As I shared in a previous blog, this behavior is incredibly intolerant of those students attending the university who do not happen to share the same beliefs about marriage. In our modern university culture, where tolerance has become the cardinal virtue and moral relativism acts as the official epistemological litmus test for determining the correctness of one’s point of view, it seems incredibly irrational and contradictory for state universities to take a firm stance on anything! After all, to remain intellectually coherent, the doctrine of tolerance demands neutrality.

Christian Universities, on the other hand, are committed to the pursuit of Truth. The educational experience is built, not upon the shifting sands of moral relativism, but upon the unchanging revelation of God’s Word. In the words of the great Christian author and apologist, Francis Schaeffer, He is There and He is Not Silent! And where God has clearly spoken, He expects us to fully represent His views both to the student body and to the world.

And If there ever was an issue where God has clearly spoken, it’s the issue of marriage! We should be teaching our students the biblical norms for marriage, the family and sexuality and equipping them to clearly communicate God’s Truth to their generation. In addition, we should be highlighting the tragic consequences which occur when individuals and nations rebel against God’s moral order. What an amazing opportunity God has given us to provide leadership to a culture that is currently experiencing a moral free-fall. In fact, it’s more than just an opportunity, it’s a responsibility. It’s a sacred trust.

Years ago Charles Colson wrote a book entitled, Who Speaks for God? His book was a prophetic challenge to “confess Christ where the battle rages,” to stand for Christ contra mundum – “against the world.” He went on to quote John Wesley, who said:

“Making an open stand against all the ungodliness and unrighteousness which overspreads our land as a flood is one of the noblest ways of confessing Christ in the face of His enemies.”

It’s time for the Church and the Christian University to make “an open stand” this critical issue of marriage. If we won’t, who will?

If you agree, please take a moment to call your pastor and encourage him to stand for marriage. And while you’re at it, call the president’s office at the closest Christian university near you and ask why the university is remaining silent on this important, biblical issue.