Apr 192014
 

thumbnail.aspxChrist is risen!

We give thanks for the gift of Easter that runs beyond our explanations, beyond our categories of reason, even more, beyond the sinking sense of our own lives.

We know about the powers of death, powers that persist among us, powers that drive us from you, and from our neighbor, and from our best selves.

 

 

We know about the powers of fear and greed and anxiety, and brutality and certitude. powers before which we are helpless.

And then you … you at dawn, unquenched, you in the darkness, you on Saturday, you who breaks the world to joy.

Yours is the kingdom … not the kingdom of death,

Yours is the power … not the power of death,

Yours is the glory … not the glory of death.

Yours … You … and we give thanks for the newness beyond our achieving.

Amen.
Walter Brueggemann. Awed to Heaven, Rooted in Earth: The Prayers of Walter Brueggemann (p. 161). Kindle Edition.

Apr 182014
 

Pastor-Bob-Coy-of-Calvary-Chapel-resigns-over-moral-failing.-www.allchristiannews.com_In the Wednesday night service at Calvary Chapel Ft. Lauderdale, Pastor Chet confirmed the specific allegations about Bob Coy we reported on this blog.

Listen beginning at the 50 minute mark here.

” Our pastor…he committed adultery with more than one woman.”

“Our pastor…he committed sexual immorality…habitually…through pornography”.

The pastor speaking reported that Coy was confronted by “Nathans”, and willingly resigned after confession of his sin.

Evidently, my sources were pretty good after all…and the ‘vicious rumormongering” was fact.

Evidently…

I commend CC Ft. Lauderdale for telling the truth and letting the healing begin.

 

Apr 182014
 

IMG_0078To me and countless others over time, Crater Lake is the most beautiful place on earth.

For those unaware, it is a volcano that blew up, collapsed into itself and slowly filled with the clearest water on earth.

Now it’s the deepest lake in North America, seventh deepest in the world.

It is a wonder of the world, breathtaking in it’s unspeakable beauty.

What it really is…is a scar.

A scar of God.

Before the cataclysmic explosion it was “just” another mountain in the Cascade range, a home for myriad animals and Native Americans.

The eruption was powerful, terrible, awesome.

The mountain was destroyed along with all the surrounding area.

There was nothing beautiful left.

If you had lived here and managed to survive the blast, you would have had to move on…the life you had known before was no longer.

It was all over…but it wasn’t.

Slowly, the land healed…and what God created in the devastation was far greater than what had been before.

It took a very long time, a very long time indeed.

Now, people come from all over the world to see the scar of God.

Some of us find healing in it.

The transformation has triumphed over the devastation.

It always will.

Make your own application…

 

Apr 172014
 

51IlED6lBGLOne of the most damaging tendencies i see in myself and other Christians of late is to  minimize the importance of the study of eschatology.

Weary of and embarrassed by the constant speculations that read the apocalypse into every news event and the character assassination of those who won’t do likewise, many of us just stopped paying attention to biblical prophecy at all.

That is both unwise and unbiblical…the Bible devotes much attention to the topic of the end times.

After wrestling with all the divergent views on the Rapture and the Second Coming many years ago, I believe that the pre wrath scenario best harmonizes all the biblical data and presents the most biblically coherent view of the end times.

I also believe that the foundational structure and doctrine is closest to what the early church believed.

The best book that clearly outlines and defends this position is the one I review today, AntiChrist Before The Day of The Lord: What Every Christian Needs To Know About the Return of Christ by Alan Kurshner.

Kurshner is a Greek scholar pursuing his Ph.D in Greek linguistics and heads up Eschatos Ministries.

The book uses careful biblical exegesis and simple but helpful graphics to explain the pre wrath position, which can be basically outlined by this sentence;

“The church will first experience the Antichrist’s great tribulation, which will be cut short by the return of Christ to resurrect and rapture believers, and then the rapture will be followed immediately on the same day by the onset of the day of the Lord’s wrath executed upon the ungodly—hence, prewrath.”

What this book isn’t is a long screed against the pretribulation rapture doctrine.

Kurshner simply exegetes and harmonizes the critical texts involved and in doing that work, refutes pretribulationism without having to attack it directly.

More importantly than simply being a defense of a particular eschatological position, Kurshner carefully lays out why we need to be ready to face the wrath of the AntiChrist.

Jesus and the NT writers were constantly warning us to be on guard against deception and apostasy and to be ready for persecution…and to be overcomers in Christ of it all.

There will be no escape from the Great Tribulation for believers, but we have been warned in advance of it’s coming.

This book, read with an open Bible at hand, will help you to be biblically and spiritually ready for both the end of the age and our blessed hope of His appearing.

I commend it highly.

For an exhaustive but readable treatment of all the major eschatological views I recommend Biblical Eschatology by Jonathan Menn.

 

Apr 162014
 

cashYou can read the audited financial statement of Calvary Chapel Ft. Lauderdale by clicking here.

It’s a fascinating look inside of the financial life of a mega church.

 

The thing that stands out to me as a former banker is a short term loan held by Bank of America for $35,000,000.

It calls for balloon payments of over $3,000,000 for this year, 2015 and 2016, a $2,000,000 payment in 2017, and a whopping $23,000,000 balloon in 2018.

The church had about $9,000,000 in cash on hand as of last June.

That will start disappearing immediately.

Now, that loan was undoubtedly given based on the earning power of Bob Coy.

It is also possible, depending on how the loan was written, that it could be called immediately now that he’s gone.

Bank of America could choose to attach some of the $90,000,0000 in equity the church possesses on the property.

Churches of that size are dependent on the power of personality…and without that personality, the giving and attendance drop precipitously.

I think the Bible calls that idolatry…

I digress.

CCFTL is in need of a savior…will one appear?

Apr 162014
 

1426163_10152538970789156_1955504315_aOn Wednesdays we remember that a brother languishes in a foreign prison.

We do more than just remember, however…we stand with him by using our social media to advocate for his release.

We ask that you change your Facebook profile picture to his and that you “like”  the “Free Saeed” Facebook page and participate in some of the activities that promote his cause.

How sad and telling it is of our spiritual state that a brother in chains for the Gospel is ignored while we debate the merits of a man who broke covenant with his wife and family.

How utterly shameful it is that the same tribe that defends the covenant breaker usually ignores the plight of one of their own who is being faithful unto an uncertain future.

Why have we not seen the kind of sustained pressure from the church and the government that it would require to free this man?

Why?

Apr 152014
 

First, thank you folks who use the Amazon links to make your purchases.

A small percent comes back to me and it helps out a lot.

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We covet your continued support and your prayers for what we do here.

I can always be reached at phoenixpreacher@gmail.com with your questions or concerns.

Thank you!

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