revolution

June 30, 2014

christ on cross

There can be no Greater Good than God by definition.

 

 

Think about it. If it is humanity’s highest purpose to glorify God, how can we expect God to have a lesser purpose? Jesus said the greatest commandment is to love God with all of our heart,mind, soul and strength. God has not disobeyed this commandment. The first commandment was to have no other gods before the LORD. God is not an idolater. As John Piper explains, the most passionate heart for God in all the universe is God’s heart. God’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy himself forever.

 

If it is right for man to have the glory of God as his goal, can it be wrong

for God to have the same goal? If man can have no higher purpose than

God’s glory, how can God? If it is wrong for man to seek a lesser end than

this, it would be wrong for God, too. The reason it cannot be right for man to live for himself, as if he were God, is because he is not God. Those who insist that God should not seek His glory in all things are really asking that He cease to be God. And there is no greater blasphemy than to will God out of existence.

 

God is ultimate, not us. And true religion ultimately exists not for humanity, but for God. This is only reasonable. It is wrong for a man to be self-centered because that man is not actually the center of the universe. God is, always has been, and always shall be the center of the universe.

 

Were God to act as if another were central to the universe, that “other” would be God. It is wrong for man to judge, as if he were God, because he isn’t God. But God is God, and it is right for him to perform the functions that are only worthy of God. Besides, God’s perfect character isthe very standard of good and evil. Whatever God desires is good. Self-centeredness—what the Bible calls God’s deity (Romans 1)—is of the essence of God’s being God.

 

 

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

But is God selfish? Would Divine self-centeredness bring into question God’s Goodness?

This Greater Good argument raises another question. What kind of God would do such a thing?What kind of God would make creatures that he knows will reject him, just so he can put his wrath on display? What kind of God would still create a person when God knows that that person will suffer in hell forever? Is God a monster? Isn’t God being just a little bit selfish?

 

 

 

That’s what all the idiot talking heads are saying, like HBO’s (hemorrhoid brain overload), Bill Maher and the moron’s on the View, or brain dead Oprah (who has her own religion and the God of the bible is obsolete)Thinking they were wise they became fools (Romans 1:22).

 

 

DEFENDANT: God

OCCUPATION: Maker, ruler, judge of heavens and earth

ADDRESS: Everywhere, particularly “the heavens”

CHARGE: Being selfish

EVIDENCE:

1. Hell, Fires of. Billions will suffer there, and the Defendant says he will do it to“display his wrath.” Defendant even threatens that “they will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb” (Revelation 14:10).

 

 

2. Intolerance of non-Christian religions. He calls them idolatry and says he will punish them.

 

3. Intolerance of numerous behaviors that people enjoy.

 

4. Insistence that people focus all attention on Defendant all the time. Intolerant of those who do otherwise.

 

5. Multiple unexpected outbursts of anger.

 

a. Nadab & Abihu, whom Defendant burned with fire while they offered sacrifices in Defendant’s temple (Leviticus 10:1-7).

 

 

b. Uzzah, whom Defendant struck dead while trying to keep Defendant’s ark from falling to the ground (1 Chronicles 13:9-11).

 

 

c. Ananias and Sapphira, whom Defendant killed while they were donating money to Defendant’s church (Acts 5:1-11).

 

 

d. Christians in Corinth whom Defendant killed because they ate their communion  bread too quickly (1 Corinthians 11:29-32).

 

Repeated remarks that everything must happen for Defendants own glory (1 Corinthians10:31). Refusal to share glory with others (Isaiah 48:11).

 

The Bible says God is supreme in God’s own heart.

There are lots of passages in the Bible that honestly trouble a lot of readers—passages where God kills people, punishes people, says things that seem intolerant, offensive, even selfish.Whenever a passage in the Bible rubs us the wrong way, it should give us pause, because the problem is not with the Bible, but with us.

 

What is it we don’t understand about God’s character that makes some of God’s actions seem sound fair? There is one simple truth that—once grasped—makes us see things as God sees  them and unlocks a renewed understanding of God and God’s ways. One single passion drives God’s heart. That passion,  as teachers like Augustine and Jonathan Edwards have helped us to see, is this: God’s primary concern in everything he does is to bring glory to himself.

 

 

 

God is chiefly concerned with his own fame. God is self-centered. Selfish, one might even say. If there’s one thing we know from the Bible, it’s that God is chiefly concerned with the honor of his name—just look at the prayer Jesus taught us to pray (Matthew 6:9-13). Before ever getting to us and our needs, we pray for God’s name to be honored, for God’s rule (kingdom) to be furthered and for God’s will to be done.

 

 

 

 

Even when God saves sinners from their sins—a supreme act of generosity—God insists that he’s doing it for his own benefit more than for ours. Observe how God speaks of salvation in Isaiah 48:11: “For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this. How can I let myself be defamed? I will not yield my glory to another.”

 

 

 

God bless the patient, thank you for everyone’s prayers and encouragement. God always search our motives, thoughts and hearts.

Pray for Virginia who is battling depression, Veronica that is struggling with fidelity, for Angie that is fighting addictions, and Ron who got his 1 year coin from AA today, fight the good fight brother.

I heartily recommend Paul Copan’s book, “is God a moral Monster” to get a great perspective on this subject.

 

hunk of burning love

June 28, 2014

This is where I’m likely to loose some people. But this is where the rubber hits the road and we find out who really loves God and who just loves themselves and God for their own sake (i.e. fire insurance).

For God to plan a universe in which evil exists is a good

thing if that evil will be used by God to bring greater

glory to himself.

 

 

There. I said it. Now everyone can scream about how unfair God is. I’m not sure why, but people always get upset when I present God’s glory as a higher good than our comfort. Hmmm. Does this make God the author of evil? No. Not if human agents choose with their own wills to do the evil acts. Is God making the ends justify the means? No. That would only be a valid concern if  God’s actions themselves were sinful, which they aren’t. For God to use someone else’s sinful acts to accomplish a good purpose is not evil. Indeed, it’s making a good use out of events that would otherwise have none.

 

The classic biblical illustration of this point is the account of Joseph’s enslavement in Egypt. Joseph’s brothers sought to kill him,selling him into slavery. Joseph was wrongly accused and jailed. Still, all of this evil and suffering was necessary to accomplish a greater plan that God had. Millions of people were spared from famine. Joseph’s wicked brothers had an evil plan, an evil plan that God incorporated into his own good plan in order to accomplish a greater good. As Joseph explained to his brothers, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:19-20). God intended evil to befall Joseph in order to achieve the greater good of saving many lives.

 

Think back to the life of Job. Job never knew why he suffered. He accepted the suffering as from God, saying, “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised” (Job 1:21). Was Job’s suffering meaningless? No. Job didn’t know what was going on. God had made a wager with Satan, and Job’s  sufferings were a test to see if God was worthy of worship in his own right, or simply because God gave Job wealth. Job’s faithfulness demonstrated that God was worthy with or without his blessings.

 

God was glorified, and Satan was proved to be a liar. Did God do evil? No. Satan and his human agents committed the evil acts. God allowed them to do this evil (just like he allows us to do evil), limiting only their ability to kill Job. God was good. God was all-powerful. The evil was real. (You can ask Job about it someday.) And a greater good—God’s glory—flowed from it all.

 

God allows evil, not primarily so that we can do a greater good, but so that he  can do a greater good. And that greater good isn’t mainly our glory, but his glory. God’s glory is the display of his perfections—his goodness, his mercy, his holiness, his justice, his wrath, his patience, and his righteousness. That greater good is the display of God’s character. Look at Romans 9:19-24:

 

• God allows our free evil choices so he can make his wrath known. This would be impossible without evil.

• God allows our free evil choices so he can make his mercy known. This too would be impossible without evil.

• A world with evil is thus eternally significant in a way that a world without evil would not be.

Remember that the story of Joseph is the longest story in the bible, well worth reading a dozen times.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

free bird

June 27, 2014

Continuing on in our building our Faith, we are still looking at the idea of evil and God.

But free will is only a partial answer.

But this still doesn’t answer how God could allow such evil to happen. Free will is kind of a lame answer to the problem of evil. Why would God create beings that are capable of making evil choices? The fact remains that if God is good and all-powerful, he nevertheless created million sof people knowing they would sin and thus suffer the wrath of hell forever.Wrong answer: It is better for God to create beings with free will than beings without free will.

  • Problem #1: This assumes that having the ability to sin is better than not having that ability. We would then be better than God, since God cannot sin. [God can’t sin, and No, God is not a robot.] The ability to sin isn’t freedom.

  • Problem #2: In heaven, we will no longer be able to sin, yet will still not be robots. We’ll just want what’s good. This is better than being able to sin

  • Problem #3: God certainly could have planned for history to happen differently. God could have kept the serpent out of the garden. Or God could have given Adam a desire to obey God, as we will have in heaven.

  • Problem #4: The Bible says that even sinful human choices are a part of God’s plan. Read Ephesians 1:11 and Romans 8:28. Our freedom does not limit God’s sovereignty.

God Allows evil to achieve a Greater Good.

This argument has two versions. The more common form of the argument is that God allows evil in order to give us opportunities to love. Without evil in the world, there would be no one needy of compassion, no one we would need to forgive, no enemies to love as ourselves. As Romans 8:28 states, “And we know that in all things God works together for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

 

But this passage says a little less and a little more than some people realize. Less? God’s good purpose isn’t for everyone here, but only for “those who love God.” More? The good that God brings about here is less about opportunities for us to do greater good, and more about God doing something good for us.

 

 

 

Often the way the greater good argument is presented seems lacking. The good aspects that people usually point to—opportunities for us to show love and mercy, a greater appreciation  of goodness through its comparison with evil—may not outweigh the evil in question.

 

 

In all that we’ve talked about we need to be careful that we stick more with the Word of God than precepts and philosophy. We always need to remember that there is power in the Word of God and it is what changes hearts and minds, not our own power of speech. But, don’t give up on these concepts. We need to argue effectively and persuasively.

 

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

 

Pray for Larry who is just starting AA meetings and has to learn to work the program.

For Beth who is going in for testing and for Richard who is having minor surgery but is 94.

Continuing on in our taking our Faith out to the streets, we must be able to deal adequately with the concept of evil and God. This is the most common attack on our faith.

 

Evil is not a thing, but a privation of the good.

This was the point that Augustine made in the fourth century when refuting the dualistic Manichean cult out of which he had come when converted to Christ. Mani had taught that there were two eternal creator-Gods, one evil and one good—the evil God accounting for evil in the world, the good God accounting for goodness. Augustine wrote On the Nature of the Good to demonstrate that evil as a created thing does not exist. Since there is no evil thing in creation, and evil creator-God is irrational.

 

Evil is not a thing, but a condition that good things have.  God created all things good (Genesis 1), and evil is a condition they have when they have lost some of their initial goodness. Even Satan has no creative power, but is himself just a fallen creature.

 

Sex, for example, is a good gift of God. Adultery is the perversion of a good thing by robbing itof the good context for which it was designed. People are not evil in the sense that a human hear tis a bad thing. Rather, humans are evil insofar as they have fallen from the condition in which God first designed them. Evil, then, is not a thing. Evil is a lack. Evil is a negative. Evil is a privation of the good.

 

This is even how human language has developed. Injustice, for example, assumes the prior existence of justice. Injustice is a lack of justice. Immorality is a privation of morality,unkindness a lack of kindness. Sin, biblically speaking, is a failure to achieve God’s standard o f perfection, falling short of our design, a “missing the mark”. R.C. Sproul makes the observation well: “Our language betrays the fact that to think about and conceptualize evil, we must do it against the backdrop of the good” (Reason to Believe, 127).

 

Thus a philosopher like Descartes in the seventeenth century could answer the skeptics who argued that if God exists, he must be evil. Descartes agreed that there could be nothing in the effect (creation) that was not also in the cause (God), but added that evil is not a thing, but alack. The creation’s now having less goodness does not require a reality of evil within God’s nature. It only requires that beings with free will chose to seek a lesser good than the good for which they were created—a seeking of lesser goods that offends God and is therefore called evil.

 

Next up, free will, the answer or the curse.

God bless

Prayer requests at scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

How could a good, all-powerful God create a world full of suffering & evil?

Often an objection believers hear to the truthfulness of Christianity relates to the problem of evil. Philosophers state the objection at a sophisticated level in logical propositions. But even those without professional training experience the problem of evil. The world is full of suffering,death—babies born deformed, children dying of starvation.

Hitlers and Stalins murder millions.How could a good, all-powerful God have created such a universe? Believers may express this objection in a more reverent fashion—How can a good and sovereign God tolerate suffering?In last week’s Story of the Good Policeman, it is clear that the Good Policeman would have been just to punish the criminals, but why wouldn’t a Good Policeman prevent the crime in the first

place? Is God too weak? Or is he just an evil God?

Three Heretical Answers (Don’t EVER say any of these!):

Heretical Solution #1: Free-will theism (Clark Pinnock)/process theology. God has no power to change things.

 

Heretical Solution #2: Christian Science, eastern religion. Evil is just an illusion.

Heretical Solution #3: Dualism. There is a dark side to the Force, Luke.

 

 

The issue is not that God’s goodness, God’s power, and evil’s reality can’t fit together, but that there are additional pieces to the puzzle that fit between them and hold them together.

Free Will is a partial answer.

Free will gives a partial answer to this question of evil and suffering. It goes like this.

• God made humanity with free will.

• Evil is a result of human choices. Our first parents chose to sin.

• As a result of sin, this world has been plunged into suffering.

Evil, therefore, finds its origin not in the Creator, but in the creature. God receives no blame for evil—we do. We get the credit for evil because we’re the ones who chose to abandon God.

2. As a result of free will, history is discontinuous.

There was no evil in God’s original creation. But Adam had free will—he was able to sin or to not sin. And he chose to sin. And Adam’s choice affected more than just himself. He represented all of humanity. Indeed, Adam represented the whole world (he had dominion over it), and whenAdam was sinning, the whole world was declaring war on God. Thus even the natural world was plunged into suffering—animate as well as inanimate (the ground being cursed in Genesis 3 and thus awaiting full salvation at Christ’s return—Romans 8:19-22). This discontinuity is what Christians call the Fall. The world is good (Gen. 1), but fallen in rebellion against God.

How could God create a world full of evil and suffering? He didn’t. He created a world in which people enjoyed communion with God, intimacy with each other, perfect harmony with the creation, and everlasting life—a world with no suffering, no sin and no guilt. History is radically discontinuous. The world changed at the Fall.

 

 

And the fact that the Bible says the world is good but fallen certainly makes sense of life. Human beings are capable of great beauty and kindness, but also great evil. Children are cute, but selfish.Adults are smart, but manipulative. The Bible accounts for both the glory and the shame of being human. We’re God’s image, but an image marred and distorted by our divorce from our Creator.

The Christian philosopher Blaise Pascal spoke of the grandeur and misery of humanity. We are capable of great things, but are always capable of pondering an existence better than the life we now have. Thus we find ourselves in misery precisely because we have the ability to contemplate a better existence.

Perhaps the fact that we can imagine a life without suffering is itself are minder deep within our human consciousness of the life we once enjoyed in loins of father can only regain through the redemptive intervention of God inhuman history. This is a redemption that will only be complete when Jesus Christ returns.

If you want God to eradicate evil, you’re demanding that he eradicate us. God’s alternative to eradicating evil people is to redeem them.

Remember the words of Peter: “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some  understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). You blame God for evil in the world? I assure you he can take care of the problem right now—but you won’t like the way he does so. Is there evil in your heart? He can destroy your heart at any moment. The amazing thing, though, is that God doesn’t do this.

 

 

He made your tongue, and you use it to speak against him—but he is patient with you. For now.Redemption is God’s striking alternative to eradication. Rather than destroying his fallen creation, he has chosen to restore a people for himself, a people who one day will live with him in a restored creation (2 Peter 3:13)

 GOD BLESS FROM SCUMLIKEUSCHURCH@GMAIL.COM

People without Jesus probably wouldn’t enjoy heaven.

This is a point that C.S. Lewis made. We are naturally drawn toward our delights. In a poll of Hollywood celebrities, most said they believed in heaven. But when asked to describe heaven,not one of them mentioned God.

While the Bible tells us very few details about heaven, the one thing the Bible is clear about is that in heaven we will see God. The brilliance of God’s perfections will light up the city. People who aren’t looking for God have no business entering the gates of heaven. They wouldn’t enjoy it. If their joy isn’t in the Lord, but in other things, they could never be happy in heaven.

You’ll notice I quote C.S. Lewis, quite often, if you can find a book of quotes by him, you might like it better than trying to read his books. Although they are considered ‘classics’ they are very wordy. That’s the British for you.

One thing about reading, read more of what you like, which is the opposite of what Theodore Roosevelt said, that we should read more books that we might not like, but are better for us.

Life’s to short to read only ‘stuffy’ books.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

We interrupt our regularly scheduled devotion for something else, perhaps something a little more timely for someone who needs help.

 

My favorite passage in Elijah’s life is 1Kings 19.

 

 

 I can’t say that like Elijah, I’ve called down fire from heaven, but I can certainly relate to Elijah in this particular chapter.  First we need to understand the setting.

 

 

  Elijah has just won a great victory at Mt. Carmel over the prophets of Baal, the Canaanite false god who demanded ritual prostitution and child sacrifice.  The Israelite leaders who witnessed this demonstration have turned back to God, and God has ended the drought he brought upon them because of their idolatry.

 

 

Elijah has literally outraced Ahab and his chariot to the wicked queen Jezreel, where he undoubtedly anticipates Ahab and Jezebel’s repentance or surrender or defeat. Read 1 Kings 19:1-10.  What a contrast!  Up to now, Elijah has been the epitome of spiritual courage.

Now he collapses into depression, runs away when Israel most needs his leadership (possibly missing the chance for national repentance), and turns into a suicidal basket case.

 

 

This is a profile of spiritual depression—a specific kind of depression that is related to commitment to God.  That after a great religious high, or victory for God, you will often find yourself suffering with what I call “Elijah’s depression” (along with many other biblical characters)

This should alert us to the fact that being committed to God does not necessarily exempt us from getting seriously depressed.  I have certainly found this to be true, including very recently.  It also discloses common causes of spiritual depression, and awareness of these causes can prevent or mitigate serious spiritual depression.

 

 

Elijah’s depression is the result of a “perfect storm”—the convergence of several common causes.  The first factor is what we might call unrealistic expectations.  Re-read 19:4 – “I’ve had enough” means “That’s the last straw—I can’t take any more.”  He is referring to 19:2—when instead of repenting or surrendering, Jezebel ordered Elijah’s death.  But why was this the last straw?  Why not the time in Cherith or Zarephath?  Why not the three years living with Ahab’s death order?  Probably because Elijah expected that the dramatic victory on Mt. Carmel would result in Ahab’s and Jezebel’s repentance or judgment (even though God never promised this).  When this didn’t happen, Elijah collapsed in despair.

 

 

It is easy to get in trouble by letting legitimate spiritual desires turn into expectations that go beyond what God actually promises.  This happens most often by expecting that key people in our lives will make good decisions about God.  Of course we desire that they do this, and we pray to this end.  But God has never promised that our desires or prayers (or even God himself) will overturn people’s free will.  I have been devastated by expecting family members to turn to Christ—only to suddenly harden again and back away.

I have counseled Christian friends about their wrong attitudes, watched my counsel sink in—only to see them revert back to the same wrong attitude.  When things like this happen, they are bound to make us sad because we care about them.  But when we base our emotional security on people’s choices rather than God’s faithfulness, the result is serious depression.

 

 

You have to build a network of trusted friendships so that a safety net is already there when you get depressed.  It’s too late when you’re wiped out and you don’t have this in place (Eccles. 4:9,10).  The average American adult male has less than one friend!  There are many cultural reasons for this trend, but we were never designed to bear adversity without close friendships!

If you know Christ, you are part of God’s family and you don’t have to be relationally isolated.  Get in a home group and build some close Christ-centered friendships!  If you don’t know how to do this, ask someone in your spiritual network to help you develop this.

 

 

Don’t face depression alone, if you’re into hyper-faith, don’t believe the lie that drugs are evil. (Legal, prescriptions, not some pot you borrowed from your neighbor).

 

 

Prayer requests at scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

It’s not a question of liking hell.

Of all the topics Jesus talked about, he talked about hell more than any other topic. So it must be important. It’s not popular but it is relevant to the Christian system of thought.

Here is another way to introduce the idea of hell to someone that doesn’t “like” the concept of hell.

I don’t like the thought of tornados. They scare me, and I don’t want to believe in them. But I can’t say that tornados don’t exist. I can’t tell you, “Oh, you’ll never get hurt in a tornado.” I can’t say that because tornados do exist. We’re talking about reality, not preferences. Facts, no topinions. I don’t want to believe in death either, but I do because it’s real. Similarly, I believe in hell because it’s real. Everyone goes there unless Jesus changes his or her destiny.

Why do I believe it? I believe in hell because Jesus instructs me to believe it. He warns me about hell. Indeed, over half the references to hell in the entire Bible come from the lips of Jesus himself—Jesus, friend of sinners, compassionate toward those enslaved to sinful hearts. Jesus above all others has the right to warn us about hell. Jesus took upon himself the hell of God’s wrath when he hung upon the cross.

The true terror of the cross was not capital punishment, but the fact that God poured out his wrath upon his Son, judging Jesus in my place. Jesus experienced God’s hatred, felt the Father’s love turning from him. Jesus was forsaken by God so that we who are so ripe for God’s judgment might never be forsaken.

God bless everyone for the kind thoughts and prayers.

Prayer requests to scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Linda who starts chemo Monday, she’s 11 years old. For Byron who wants to quit smoking and for Larry that is hoping to save his marriage, he and his wife are going to church this Sunday for the first time in 9 years.

here comes the judge

June 21, 2014

Being religious makes it worse, not better.

People think that somehow being religious makes one immune from judgment for sin. But the picture God gives us in the Bible is just the opposite. Religious people are some of the worst,because their religion is not an attempt to seek God, but a sophisticated way of rejecting God.

Paul lays this out for us in Romans 1-3.

God has communicated to us in nature, but we’ve responded with idolatry—Romans1:18-32.

Human religion is evidence not of seeking God, but of replacing him. Religion actually increases guilt rather than diminishing it. To corrupt that which is holy is worse than ignoring it altogether.God has communicated to us in our hearts, but we’ve used this to judge others—Romans 2:1-16.

 

God has written his moral law on every human heart, but no one has obeyed him. This law,called natural law by philosophers, the Tao by C.S. Lewis, condemns us rather than saving us.We see others sin, and judge them in our hearts, only to sin ourselves on another occasion.

Those who have God’s laws in the Bible are also unrighteous—Romans 2:17-29; 3:9-20.

 

The Jews in Paul’s day—including Paul himself, the Pharisee of Pharisees—failed to benefit from God’s law because they saw it as a means of self-righteous achievement and pride.

There is no damnation without representation.

Even if it could be demonstrated that someone had lived a life without committing any specific sinful act, God would still be perfectly just in condemning that person. Even as tiny babies in the womb, we are sinners who bear the guilt of our corporate human rebellion against God. Our lawful representative and family head, Adam—what theologians call our “federal” head—declared our rebellion against God on our behalf when he sinned against the Lord in Eden.

 

Remember—Adam’s children didn’t start off in the Garden all over again. The judgment God placed on Adam comes to all his descendants, all his constituents—all those he represented.

 

Adam’s children received Adam’s curse, the expulsion from the Garden, the thorns and thistles,  the pain, the death, and the hell. “Surely I was sinful at birth,” the Psalmist laments, “sinful from the time my mother conceived me” (Psalm 51:5). “From birth the wicked go astray, from the womb they are wayward and speak lies” (Psalm 58:3). Paul deals even with the possibility of those who didn’t have a clear commandment against which they sinned, “Nevertheless death reigned… even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam…. The result of one trespass was condemnation for all men” (Romans 5:14).

Sound unfair? This is how representative government works, even today. Are you an American?

Why aren’t you a subject of the British crown? Because a group of men chose for you to rebel  against England in 1776. When Thomas Jefferson declared his personal independence from Britain two centuries ago, he was placing you in rebellion against the British crown as well.

Seem unfair? Shouldn’t you have had the right to personally choose your national status? Sorry. That’s not how federal government works—federal, based on the people’s representatives. And our representative Adam (even his name being the Hebrew for man) blew it for us. We are conceived and born in rebellion against God even before we’ve had a chance to sin.

And we add to our guilt daily. We sin because we’re sinners.

 

If God were to damn us just because of Adam’s sin, he would be just. But we don’t stop with Adam’s sin, returning to God begging for mercy, promising never to sin ourselves. We rebel against our Creator constantly in word, thought and deed. Sin has so affected us as to become our natures. We can’t not sin—we are sinners. Firefighters fight fires; candlestick makers make candlesticks, and sinners sin. It’s what we do because it’s what we are. “There is no one who seeks God” (Romans 3:11).

God bless you from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Personally I would ask you to pray for me, I’ve reached maximum stress levels and am frazzled.