Nov 282017
 

1. I’m glad my dating days are long gone…the rules of engagement with the opposite sex have changed so much over my lifetime that I would be afraid to try…

2. Here’s what the defense of Ravi Zacharias will be, guaranteed… “but, he’s such a good teacher!”…

 

3. Jesus is “the whole counsel of God”…

4. There was a news report here in my town that after a man was evicted from his home the authorities found 70 cats living in the house. I just want to make it clear it wasn’t me…

5. I think one of the reasons why we are so unhappy and overmedicated is that technology has exceeded our capacity to to use it wisely. Your brain wasn’t meant to deal with the sensory barrage it receives …

6. In Gen 15:6 it says that (speaking of Abram) “he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness”. What did Abram believe?

7. It is amazing to me that after all the sex abuse scandals (and all the other scandals that we seem to get on an average of one per hour), that nobody in the media has yet come to the conclusion that humans have a sin problem. If you don’t understand the problem, you’ll never find a solution…

8. All these scandals should serve to remind us of our own depravity…but it’s more fun to deal with the depravity of others…

9. I’ve become so inured to bad news that the only thing I remember that I read on Facebook yesterday is that my friends cat came home after going missing. It felt good to rejoice…

10. The only time I think about the return of Christ is when I read something that makes me doubt it’ll happen anytime soon…my guess is that is not healthy…

phoenixpreacher@gmail.com

  72 Responses to “Things I Think…”

  1. but I thought teaching the “Whole counsel of God” was teaching “line upon line” through the whole bible. 😉 #calvarychapelisms

  2. Of course it wasn’t you, your house would have had at least 80 cats. 🙂

  3. great thinking going on … again 🙂
    #4 – who needs 70 cats when you’ve got Chester? that was funny, tho
    #10 – Pro 13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
    but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.
    i doubt that Solomon had the second coming of our Lord in mind.. but the Proverb fits somehow

  4. Micheal I listened to your most recent podcast on Dr Ravi Z. I could be wrong but I think you might be underestimating his influence among younger Christians and non Christians in this generation.

    When I was in college at the UW during my junior year literally thousands of young people came to hear him speak. A good portion of them non Christian.

    I’ve seen a similar scene of him play out on college campus across America. He was recently even invited to speak at BYU.

    Just pointing out that Ravi is being invited to places and spaces that most Christians teachers are never invited into.

    From that standpoint this is very sad.

  5. Seraphim,

    That podcast was about Hank Hanagraaff.
    This weeks podcast opens with some thoughts on Zacharias.

    Having said that, you may well be right.
    I have never paid five minutes of attention to the man, so my perception could be very skewed.

  6. # 3 – Hmmmm.

    # 7 – Hmmmm…

  7. KevinH,

    I would, but the size of that catbox is more than I could bear…

  8. Em,

    That proverb is rapidly becoming my life verse… 🙂

  9. @Micheal

    Thanks for the response. This news, if true is sad. It will really damage the inroads Ravi has made in many places hostile to the true gospel.

    Ravi has been invited many times by the Mormon leadership to speak at the Mormon Tabernacle. If you know anything about Mormonism (which I’m sure you do) this is quite an amazing feat.

    Despite these allegations I hope he repents and can move on from this. Not sure what that looks like but he has had quite an influence in many areas outside of the normal evangelical Christian sphere.

  10. John 20:29, I miss read your passage quote and looked up proverbs 16:12….for all those pastors who liken themselves to King David, they should read this verse and think twice. lol

  11. Glad you don’t have 70 cats Michael, the smell and the fur would not be good for your health. lol that poor guy.

  12. #6 – The answer is not ‘what’ he believed. The answer is Abram believed God. Righteousness is the life that is created within us when we enter a relationship of trust and love. Righteousness is not a list of beliefs or even a clearly delineated code. It is the change that happens when we enjoin a relationship of complete rest. Abram heard God and rested in the revelation.

    I cannot see righteousness apart from relationship. It is the government of the heart that cannot stray from the object of love.

  13. glad your friend’s cat found its way home safely.

  14. @5 “What did he believe?” (Abram)
    Silly, it was the Moses Model!
    : )

  15. BD #12 – there is wisdom and much to think on there… IMHO it is that “rest” that is restless IMX … yet, God is faithful – always faithful, first to His own character and then amazingly He’s found a way to include us as He reads our hearts…

  16. BD,

    Proving that miracles happen…I fully agree with your exegesis of #6.

    Abrams initial belief was devoid of any doctrine or dogma and was solely about relationship.

  17. #5 “What did he believe?” (Abram)
    Silly, it was the Moses Model!
    : )

  18. Dusty,

    It was our own Paige’s cat Rocky…who’s almost as famous as Chester… 🙂

  19. Dusty’s #10

    Pro 16:12 It is an abomination to kings to do evil,
    for the throne is established by righteousness.

    there’s much to think on in that statement… accidental misread? I doubt it…

    not just the Church, but our own government stands on shaky ground by that proverb…

  20. @#7 as an abused child all these scandals make me sick, they sadden me, they make me wonder why these men were not raised to be gentlemen….they make me wander about the sin in this world…is it worse or is it the same and we just hear more because of the technology…..too much input….it is sad none the less. .

  21. oh no! so glad rocky made it home…

  22. John 20:29 , I think you are right….even our government stand on shaky ground…that is a sobering thought.

  23. #16 Miracle indeed

  24. #20 – the stock answer is that we just hear more due to the dissemination of information today…
    i think that’s wrong, it seems to me that tolerance of egregious acts is more prevalent under the banner of, “we’re on human” … well … isn’t that our first problem? and the result of the tolerance is that more people are indulging impulses that used to be guarded against… dunno

  25. on? nope “only human” = too many posts here this a.m.
    God keep

  26. Babs is so right @12. If it was what did he believe, then we would turn it into a formula – which is far to prevalent today in American Christianity.

  27. @#12 Dixie Dread, good words, good teaching!

  28. John 20:29, you never have too many posts. I love them.

  29. MLD. I appreciate you!

  30. How interesting is it to see the culture now having to address sexual sin without the aid of the church. Having discarded our ethos they find themselves building with straw. The culture that tells us to have sex anytime, anywhere, with anyone possible is now having to drink the elixir and face the sour stomach.

    Remember when American Beauty came out? I stopped watching after the first 4 scenes and ultimately declared it to be the most debasing movie of my lifetime. Of course it won the Academy Awards and now the culture has been thoroughly degraded by the values we have imbibed.

    Dating? We don’t even know how to say hello.

  31. #7-8. Another scandal broke Down Under this week. A big name of Australian TV turned out to have been a Weinstein. More ppl are likely to be named in the future, but he was the most prolific offender. How the mighty have fallen. The formerly powerless now have power. Hannah/Magnificat comes to mind.

  32. Numbers 7 & 8: progressives do nothing but blame evangelicals, and conservatives place blame on liberals/Democrats. Both are out to lunch!

  33. BD…dating and introductions is very simple these days….

    Text each other your hellos!

    JK!

  34. The rules of engagement haven’t changed inside the family of God. They always were “do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” and “love your neighbor as yourself.” I don’t know that this is what Christian men actually have been doing, but it’s what they should have been doing. Treat women for what they are, fellow human beings who Jesus loved enough to die for, and you should be fine.

  35. Selah, amen!

  36. Regarding #2,

    The irony is RZ could still be considered “a good teacher”, if he had been forthright and unambiguous about his academic credentials from the beginning. Now he will come across as a fraud and huckster and all his future visits to the various Ivory Towers will be beset with this (assuming they invite him back or any debate opponents agree to participate).

    As an aside…

    I have known a fair number people with PhD degrees over the years (mostly in technical fields such as electrical engineering, physical chemistry, etc.) and most of them don’t really brag about it. Sure it’s on their resume or CV, but many of them refer to it has “Piled Higher and Deeper” after the “More S###” degree.

  37. CM, your aside is absolutely true… the proof of the pudding principle…

  38. One other thing.

    Can I presume the requirements for a PhD in a theological field or a ThD degree are analogous to other PhD requirements (PhD qualifying exam, PhD research proposal defense (topic has to be an original contribution to the field), written dissertation, and dissertation defense?

  39. #6 That the Lord would give Abram the land upon which he was walking, multiply his descendants like the multitude of the stars, and the the world would be blessed through Abrams seed, (singular according to the apostle Paul) as God had promised him.

  40. Post hole digger.

  41. Now Garrison Keillor fired over sexual misconduct too? Say it ain’t so. Who will be left standing when the dust settles?

  42. #41 – thought twice about posting this comment because I don’t excuse any presumptive and insulting actions – or worse – toward women by men… However…
    I recall that in the recent (1980s?) past women in the business world were being advised to take advantage of their sex appeal to throw their male competitors off track, i.e., cleavage? show a bit, skirt length? show some leg etc. That IMO sent an unintended msg. “Game on” …
    Admitedly, all I know about men comes from observation and what my husband told me and I know that predatory males aren’t a new phenomena, yet the above described atmosphere increased the number of these incidents IMNSHO

  43. For my adult life I have become almost muslim-like when it comes to women outside of my family. I rarely shake hands with women, even in business settings, I do not hug them (not even the ‘christian’ side hug) or kiss the cheek.
    I would never make a sexual remark to one and have never had the need to even tell one “your hair really looks nice.”
    People usually think I am weird about that.

  44. Muslim-like? MLD, I seriously doubt that you beat your wife … sounds more like the code of conduct for an R.C. priest… Outside your home that is. 😊

  45. Em, now you have a bad opinion about muslim men – who do not touch other women.
    RCC priest?? Well, I don’t diddle the little boys.

  46. MLD, maybe you’ve been watching another channel.

    Have you tried the “Trump is awesome,” “Muslims are awful”, the “Eucharist is purely symbolic” channel? I’ve been told the women on that channel wear tight skirts.

  47. Jean you mean the channel that fired Bill O? The irony of this Bill O grilling by Matt Lauer in September is pretty astounding. Something about that, for in the same way with you judge others, you will be judged.

    Always has a way of coming back and biting us.

    https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/kyle-drennen/2017/11/29/hypocrite-matt-lauer-grilled-bill-oreilly-over-sexual-harassment

  48. Wait a minute, Jean. You were probably talking about TBN. My bad…;-)

  49. Scooter,

    Luther challenged Erasmus that if Erasmus could find one, just one, person in the whole world, from creation on, who had a free will, exhibited by not sinning, then Luther would agree that man has a free will.

    The problem that all the movie production companies, our Congress, and News Organizations have, is that they think man has a free will and from that free will can be virtuous. Well, “no they can’t.” So, what should they do about it? Use the only tool that man has: The Law.

    Why should an employer be allowed to invite female employees to his home to work? Why should Congress have a slush fund to pay off sexual harassment claims? Why should a producer be allowed to invite female actresses to a hotel room to audition?

    So, let’s get real. Free will is a fiction.

  50. Strange extrapolating going on here tonight… I think I detect a little ‘tude. 😐

  51. John 20:29, while it’s true that some women are deliberately provocative, I think it’s important to be clear that clothing is not consent, either in the church or out of it. Standards and styles vary not only between cultures and religions, but between regions and denominations and social circles. No man can ever interpret the clothing a woman wears in public as a personal invitation to touch, grope, solicit, or harass her, much less subject her to the kind of lewd and abusive behavior that the media has been reporting on.

    Both men and women have long used clothing as an excuse to treat some females poorly, as less valuable, as “that kind of woman.” But God is no respector of persons. Did Rehab deserve to be raped by the spies because she had worked as a prostitute? Was it “game on” for Jesus when he met the woman at the well?

    Guys, if you’re confused, think of it this way: if you wouldn’t want a man to say it to you, don’t say it to a woman.

  52. Selah, you are correct in your observations – I’m sorry if I wasn’t clear that provocative dress on the part of a woman should not be construed as invitation … some men don’t recognize this fact and some don’t care (Jesus was not one of these, BTW) …
    either way if you are displaying your assets, you may be creating a problem for many men – even men who are not “in the game” …
    “What’s your problem?” she asks. .. Some good men would answer, “You are.”

    That said, if we think on it, we live in a very sexualized time making the line that shouldn’t be crossed very blurred – (shouldn’t be for a Christ follower) – dress is only a part of the problem. 💃 😐

  53. #3 and the whole volume speaks of him

    #6 that God could bring forth life from an old man who was as good as dead.

    Have not heard about Ravi… not that it matters.

  54. Jean

    We find our free will after we are saved. We no longer have to sin 🙂

  55. #1
    When I met my second wife 14 years ago, the problems other guys were having meeting women were already piling higher and deeper.
    They were all, to a man, glued to their computers and gaming systems (having thrown mine away two years previously). The thought of holding a conversation notified them. When I saw her in Barnes and Noble I simply walked up and said “Hi! Can I sit here?” We made small talk, and before she left I told her I’d be kicking myself forever if I didn’t at least ask her out to coffee. Easy peezy.

    She had three single friends who are almost as gorgeous as my wife, and each of them couldn’t find a guy until their thirties because they intimidated them so badly with their intelligence, wit and looks.

    Now the playing field is tilted so badly, I would hate to be a single young man. Lifetime supply of Jergen’s and Charmin.

  56. Ahhh jeez Louise…
    “Notified” should be “mortified”…

  57. John 20:29, I understand what you’re saying, and agree that modesty is biblical. But I think it’s time for the church to stop constantly equating modesty with abuse, or using a lack of the former to excuse the latter. Sexual harassment is a lot older than the miniskirt, and it has happened time eternal to women who were dressed in clothing their culture deemed perfectly moral.

    Here, in this culture, men live and work alongside women, and many of those men, especially in the church, manage to never sexually harass anyone. Even the ones in mini skirts. Because it’s not about clothes. It’s about love and self control, which are fruits of the Spirit.

  58. Also, it’s important to note that many of these famous men who have committed crimes against women have admitted to having a pornography addiction. They have been feeding their minds with images and behaviors that have absolutely nothing to do with what the average woman is like. Those men have imprinted on a genre that is about selfishness, so they behave selfishly. To blame those crimes on their victims is missing the point, I think.

  59. Descended, am I missing something, or did you just talk about how easy it is to be appropriate with women and then make a nasty joke about masterbation?

  60. descended,

    “We find our free will after we are saved. We no longer have to sin”

    If that is true, has there ever been a human being who has stopped sinning? If you’re honest, you’ll have to admit that aside from Jesus, being justified, which by the way is forensic, does not change the will of the old Adam in every Christian from desiring to sin and since all our works are done through the old Adam (i.e., our flesh) all the good works of Christians are tainted by sin, to say nothing of the every day sins which all Christians do.

  61. Selah, the points you emphasized above are worth remembering… yes, many totally innocent women have been harassed and much worse down through time…
    i don’t think you said that i was blaming the woman for what we’re seeing today… i hope you don’t think that…
    i’m quite sure that it isn’t easy to navigate thru this blatant sexualized society today… but i hope we can, as Christians, do our part to hold the high ground … men aren’t wired quite the same as we are … a part of God’s design and, perhaps, a test also?
    nuff said on the subject… by me, at least

  62. I always get a kick out of folks who hold the position that we are free to not sin.
    My position is that because I am both saint and sinner (the simul) I still have my sin nature locked in my old man (not my dad). So I sin and I still need Jesus just as much as when I didn’t have him.

    The position descended seems to hold is that when he sins it is because it damn well please him to sin. At that point, why would that person still need Jesus? Just straighten up your act and quit sinning!

  63. MLD,

    One of the weakest points of evangelicalism is their anthropology.

    You could also look at the issue this way:

    It is written: “For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.”

    If a person could live by faith alone (not just confess the doctrine, but actually live wholly by faith alone), he would not sin. But I haven’t heard of anyone other than Jesus, who could make that claim. Any takers here?

  64. John 20:29 I don’t think you were deliberately victim blaming, you’re making a point about a sexualized society. But the arguments you’re making are often used by victim blamers or abusers themselves. Given the current cultural climate and historical outing of entrenched and powerful sexual abusers, it’s not the time to talk about short skirts. It’s the time to talk about pornography, truth, love, consent, and respect.

  65. Jean, and it may be the reason we begin the divine service on our knees in confession, whereas others may not quite have that need as it might impeded there daily path of getting better and better.
    Some would consider that a negative confession on our part – not the claim to living the victorious Christian life.

  66. Selah

    Yep. I was trying to make light of what is actually devastating men as men and society. I pointed out a comical but honest assessment of the end result of all the trip wires we as a society have created. Inappropriate joke? I guess, if you say so. Inappropriate towards women? Not in the least. The state of things? Absolutely.

    Men have very little incentive to pursue a wife. You can flip a coin on its chances of succeeding.

    The process of asking for a date has three times as many chances as going south considering the muddied social pragmatics of our time.

    Pursuing male-initiated sex inside any kind of heterosexual relationship has become a mine field.

    Porn is ubiquitous, simple, addicting and extremely damaging to a man’s self concept, self efficacy.

    Remember back in the day when the good girls lost their good boys to the bad girls down the street? Nothing has changed. It’s just an electronic version.

    I could keep going, but suffice to say, yes. I hope you snickered. It doesn’t sound like it, though. My apologies.

  67. Descended, thank you for your explanation. It just struck me as ironic that in a conversation about how to communicate with women, you made a joke that most women, especially Christian women, would find crass. Maybe you honestly don’t realize that, so if it helps, then I’ll offer this advice to you with a genuine heart: that’s exactly the kind of thing you, general you, as in all guys, shouldn’t do in mixed company. It will offend someone. It’s not how to get a date, it’s not how to make a female friend, and it’s not how to communicate in public, at church, at work, or with someone you don’t have a consensual relationship with.

    I’ll admit that I kind of don’t understand why men don’t know how to respectfully approach women they want to date. Your description of asking your wife for coffee was perfect. It was open and not smarmy. And I dated multiple men in the church in the 90’s and none of them harassed, molested, or abused me. I have plenty of male friends in and out of the church now who do not harass me. I don’t understand what has changed so much.

    Unless it’s the mass dissemination of porn. I really do suspect it’s having a massive impact and confusing things to no end. What is ok on TV or in a porn film is not what women want or like. It’s produced by men, for men. Those women are acting out every move as it was written for them…by men. That’s not how to have a relationship.

  68. describing what is portrayed on TV as boy-girl relationships is, for the most part, about the same as the relationship you have with your car … just sayin …

  69. Selah, thanks for the kind reply. Anonymity is a slippery fish.

  70. Haha, exactly

  71. Sorry, the “haha” was to John 20:29.

    Descended, I appreciate your honestly. It’s a huge issue the church has to be willing to talk about. It’s changing the social perception of a lot of men, and if we can’t speak openly, in love, as a community, it can’t be healed.

  72. Jean, I just got back to reading, been busy driving, delivering & picking up freight.

    I have no idea what you were addressing me about, Luther, Erasmus, free will and such? That’s alright though, no need to explain 😉

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