by Dan Phillips

If I were to ask what leprechauns, mermaids, and loving homosexual couples have in common, I'm pretty sure this readership would have the answer. I'd like to help you explain why you answer as you do.

What they have in common with each other is, of course, that they are all mythical creatures, living only in fantasy and imagination and every movie, TV show, and commercial in existence… or at least that's true in the latter case.

This is a truth that has obviously not reached everybody. In fact, apparently it hasn't even reached those who made the decision to become spotlight-Christians, performers whose entire career is predicated on their claim to be Christian — which is to say, lifelong and advancing students of the words of God (John 8:31-32). I have in mind here folks like Dan Haseltine, lead singer for the group Jars of Clay. Note this tweet of his:

This “loving gay couples” meme is heard so much today; it's hard not to think in response:

The whole stands or falls, of course, on the definition of “love.” If “love” means sexual arousal, well then, okey doke sport, I guess if you say so. Or if it means fondness, affection, attraction, or a hundred other emotional and even volitional states… well, how would we even have the discussion? If it's all about emotion, the “discussion” is really beside the point, isn't it? Feelings are thought…well, felt… to be self-validating. After all, you've got to follow your heart, right? And your heart is all about what you feel. Right?

Unless you start with the fear of God (Prov. 1:7) instead of the lordship of Ego. Then, everything changes.

To begin with the fear of God is to acknowledge, from the outset, the Lordship and ultimacy of God, and the dependence and fallenness of man. It is to acknowledge that our hearts cannot be trusted (Prov. 28:26 {NAS]; Jer. 17:9). It is to acknowledge that real life is only found in knowing God through His word (Prov. 3:18; 4:13; John 6:63, 68). It is to see that rebellion and unbelief are the sure way of death and misery (Gen. 2:17; Pro. 8:36; Rom. 6:23).

As we learn from God how He wants us to treat others, we learn that He wants us to love them, even if they are our enemies (Lev. 19:18; Matt. 5:44). We learn that love is not primarily about feeling. Love is about doing what is for the greatest good of the other, even if that costs us (cf. Exod. 23:4-5; Prov. 25:21). We see the grandest display of love in the Father's gift of His son for our salvation (John 3:16; 1 John 4:9).

So, you see, there never was such a thing as a “loving homosexual couple.” Nor was there ever yet a “loving adulterous couple,” or a “loving fornicating couple.” Accomplices? Yes. Co-conspirators, co-perpetrators? Sure. But loving? Never.

Love is a commitment to the good of the other — and rebellion against God is never for the good of the other. Sin against God is never for the good of the other. Turning away from life and love and forgiveness and reconciliation, and embracing guilt and wrath and doom and despair, wrapped in a straitjacket of rationalizations and distractions — these things are never about the good of the other.

Real love will point someone away from sin and death, and to Christ, the Gospel, life and forgiveness. If that
Christward call to repentant faith is absent, so is love.

This is one of those cases where the crystal-clear thinking that the fear of God teaches can stand as a bright beacon of witness to God's wisdom, in our murky, fogbound culture.

That is, if fitting in with the culture isn't our highest ambition. Which it never will be, once our own world has been tilted by the Gospel.

Postscript: this and related matters are opened more fully in “Adultery De-Glamorized,” a sermon on Proverbs 6:24-35.

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by Dan Phillips

Repentance is a Topic right now. In itself, that's a good thing. Repentance should be a constant topic in the lives of Christians — not just a constant topic, but a constant reality.

At the moment, I don't want to make a direct comment on the current issue that's brought this to the fore, and readers really shouldn't infer such from what follows.

Instead, I'd like to remind Pyro readers (and inform others) of how our readers have had the opportunity to be prepared to analyze and process such events Biblically, analytically — and not simply emotionally, whether by bitter and accusatory emotions, or chummy and exculpatory emotions.

In October of 2010 an article titled Repentance: fake and real laid down some cautionary warnings about imitations that can pose as real repentance, while withholding the actual cure itself.

Two days later a followup article titled The fruits of repentance keyed off of that very phrase, which is itself Biblical, and discussed the most commonly missing element in purported repentance: the productive element of repentance, the transformative, mortifying, and thus liberating element in repentance.

Just over a year later I wrote what I refer to as one of my Most Regrettably-Ignored Posts, Ever. Blogging is weird; some posts concerning which I had no particular expectations (like this and this) became huge things; while others of which I had large aims and expectations were virtually ignored.

One of the chief posts in this latter category was T. D. Jakes (and the like) Part Two: thinking clearly about repentance. Unlike later celebrated articles, this was written before the Elephant Room 2 disaster. Had the ideas in the post been broadcast and made the issue, a lot of damage and harm could have been averted.

Ironically, that post involved Mark Driscoll; and as it turned out, involved Driscoll a great deal. Driscoll was the Big Dog who was looked to to give a clean bill of health to T. D. Jakes… which Driscoll pretty much did. So much so, that anyone who didn't hop on-board was a racist.

If the thinking about repentance in this article had been made an issue to Driscoll before the fact, so that these questions and issues could not have been ignored, things might have gone very differently.

But they weren't, and they didn't, respectively.

So here we are again: repentance is an issue, and clarity is a need.

And so once again, I do what I can.

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I came across this video today from The Atheist Antidote and I found his tone to be calm and his presentation to be well-reasoned about what true love is. Please take the time to watch here:

I have a number of friends that have chosen worldviews and lifestyles that are contrary to the worldview that God has revealed to me through the reading of Scripture. I don't know all the circumstances that led them to their lifestyle choices but I do know that the Word of God is clear on these issues that are at the forefront of the culture today. What ever their worldview and lifestyle choice, I want to be abundantly clear that the reason I oppose their choices and worldview is certainly not because I hate them. Quite the contrary. I know what lies ahead of them if they do not repent and through God's gift of faith, trust in our Lord Jesus Christ and His imputed righteousness on their behalf and renew them to a right standing with God, their end will be an eternity living under the full fury of the wrath of God. But it doesn't need to be this way. God has graciously provided the way of escape, even though He is under no obligation to save ANY of us! To my friends caught up in these lifestyles and worldviews, ask God to reveal Himself to you through the reading of His word. My first suggestion is to read the book of John once a day for two weeks and answer this one question, Who is Jesus Christ? If you are willing to do this, I would love to hear your answer at that time. You may contact me here. To those of us who don't happen to struggle with these particular sins, let us always remember that the sins we DO struggle with are just as heinous to God as any we oppose in others.

The Just Justifier
The Just Became The Justifier – What A Great Paradox

Back in June, I wrote an article for iLevite.com called “Blog Post Sermons And Arena Worship” where I argued that many churches seem to have lost sight of what theme should be preeminent in our worship services. We should always strive for excellence in everything we do, and it should always stem from our love and devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ and not from a sense of duty or earning favor with Him, but our primary focus must remain on the Word of God. We must proclaim the message of the Gospel within the context of Scripture as a whole.

The article brought a good cross-section of responses, both positive and negative, which is never a bad thing!  The Christian Faith is a Faith that is meant to be pondered and people should take the time to work through all of its tenets, even those that are difficult. That is why it is imperative to preach and teach the Word of God in the fullest detail when we gather together as the Body of Christ.

Each day, we should remind ourselves that it is the Gospel that has transformed our lives. Easter Sunday, I had the privilege to offer special music for the church my father founded in 1963, North Flushing Baptist Church in Flushing, MI. The pastor, Dale Lewis is a life-long friend and faithful servant to the church. When we had lunch on Saturday, Dale shared what was on his heart to preach the next morning and I was amazed at how God orchestrated such a meaningful service.

For his text he chose Romans 3:20-26:

“Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;

Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”

In this text we find the core doctrine of salvation and the need for it. In chapter 1 of Romans, Paul clearly lays out the case of God's righteousness and of His holy wrath against those who transgress against His holiness. As the Infinite Holy God, any transgression against His Holiness, no matter how small we perceive it, must incur an infinite judgment. Since we are incapable of satisfying the Holiness of God through our own works, God Himself became the sacrifice to redeem His chosen as His own.

But in that last verse is a challenging concept. Christ is both the Just and the Justifier. How can this be? In Proverbs 17:15, Solomon wrote, “He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.” Essentially, Christ made Himself an abomination in the sight of God the Father in order to reconcile His fallen creation. Paul in 2 Corinthians 5:21 wrote, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”

This is the message that should permeate every worship service we plan. We must remember that the Gospel is not just for the unsaved. It is for us as well. We must also remember that building a church for the Kingdom of God is not a “numbers game.” Just because a church may have thousands upon thousands in attendance does not mean that it is a blessing from the Lord. Without the Gospel, it is merely church for goats.

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”Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” – James 4:14

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” – 1 John 3:1-2

Statistics that I have come across estimate that anywhere between 150,000 and 200,000 people die each and every day. The problem with quoting statistics such as this is that numbers of this size tend to be rather impersonal and most of us have a difficult time actually comprehending the magnitude of how many people that these numbers represent.

This fact has been brought to light recently with the passing of a number of famous people, including Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson, Ed McMahon, and even TV pitchman Billy Mays, but also in my own life. As I mentioned in my last post, our good friend Kathy Wilkinson went home to be with the Lord and caused me to ponder about our own mortality and how it relates to our understanding of the glory of God.

Well, a few weeks ago, one of my dearest friends in the world was hospitalized with what appeared to be a gall bladder problem. Ken Hankins, Pastor of Seven Lakes Baptist Church in West End, NC was my youth pastor at Grace Baptist Church in Madison Heights, VA where my Dad was pastor during my junior and senior year in high school. (Needless to say, we have been friends for a LONG time!) After a number of tests, the diagnosis has come back that they have found both pancreatic and liver cancer, both of which are very aggressive cancers, and the tumors are causing a stomach blockage which in turn has caused him to aspirate food leading to pneumonia. He is currently hospitalized in Charlotte, NC and when the doctors are able to get him stable and his lungs healed, they will send him home to spend time with his family, because there are no more treatment options. Please keep Ken, his wife and three daughters and their families in your prayers.

Ken has been a great friend for most of my life and I cannot think of a better way to honor our friendship than to honor our Lord by sharing the hope that we have in Christ. But in order to do that, we must first understand that to have a cause for hope, there must first be a cause for despair. Because of Adam’s sin (the theological doctrine of “Original Sin”) each and every one of us is born in sin (Psalm 51:5) and is an offense to God, who did not “set” the standard of righteousness, He IS the standard of righteousness. Everything He is and performs is, by definition, righteous. As the Almighty, Eternal, Holy God, He is totally sovereign over all or He is not God at all.

By the fact that He is Holy and Lord over all (whether we acknowledge that or not) He cannot tolerate sin in any fashion. Our nature is so foul to nostrils of God, He even compares our “righteousness” to “filthy rags” in Isaiah 64:6 (some have said that the term “filthy rags” in this particular verse could be translated as “menstrual cloths.”) If this is what our “righteousness” is to God, imagine what our sin is to Him!

God progressively gave us the law in His Word in order to exhibit the standard of His holiness and character (Gal. 3:24-25) and to illustrate that no matter how much we attempt to follow the law, we cannot meet the standard of holiness that He alone has set by His every existence and which is by definition, infinite. For example, if we lie to our child we suffer no immediate consequence. If we lie to our spouse, we sleep on the couch! If we lie to our employer, we get fired. If we lie to the government, we commit perjury and could go to prison. It is the same sin in each case, but the consequence is different due to the level of authority the one to which we lied has over us. It only stands to reason that if the one against whom we have sinned is the infinite standard, there must be an infinite consequence. This is why hell is not only reasonable it is assured for all those who do not measure up to God’s infinite standard. (Rev. 21:8)

It is at this point that many object and say “Well, my god would never send someone to hell. He is a god of love.” And they are absolutely correct, because their “god” does not exist and they have in fact violated the second commandment (Exodus 20:4). They have fashioned a “god” in their own image instead of acknowledging that they were created in the true God’s image.

What they do not realize is that through the progressive revelation of God’s character through the Scriptures, God has revealed that He is a God of justice and holiness (Gen. 17:1; Ps. 62:11; Jer. 32:17; Mat. 19:26; Rev. 1:8, Heb. 1:13; I Pet. 1:15-16; I John 3:3, 5; Rev. 15:4) and because He is just and holy, His character demands that sin must be punished. Since He is perfect by nature, He will not by fiat just forgive us. In fact, if He were to just forgive by fiat, He would be denying his own nature and that is not possible. There must be retribution.

God has laid out the case against us. In our natural state, we are dead in our sins (Eph. 2:1b). This means we have no ability to come to God in and of ourselves. A dead man cannot act on anything by his own will. While we have the free will to choose our own particular means of sin, when it comes to salvation, our spirit is dead and is totally unable to make the right choice.

So there is only one verdict for us as lawbreakers. Guilty as charged and an infinite trespass, demands an infinite restitution. Only infinite punishment could be the sentence for our infinite transgression. The Bible is clear that the wrath of God abides on the children of disobedience. (Jn. 3:36, Rom. 1:18, Eph. 5:6, Col. 3:6, Rev. 14:10, Rev. 14:19, Rev.15:1, Rev.15:7, Rev.16:1)

So where is the hope?

It is here that the infinite, sovereign God of the universe implemented His perfect plan of redemption that He set in motion before the foundation of the world itself. Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, born of a virgin (the sin nature is passed through the father), lived a sinless life, took on Himself the infinite punishment of all of our sin. Through the cross of Calvary, Jesus, the one who knew no sin, became the sin offering for us (I Cor. 5:21).

What does it take to satisfy the wrath of God? Only a perfect, infinite sacrifice, meaning that only God Himself could pay that price, which is exactly what took place at Calvary. What does it take to become a part of Christ’s reward? Repentance, which is a total forsaking of our sin, and total faith and trust in the work that Christ completed through the cross and His resurrection. (Eph. 2:8-9) Charles Wesley put it best when he wrote, “Amazing love, how can it be, that you my God shouldst die for me?” What amazing grace that the Creator would die for the created!

But the greatest news is
not only that He died in our place, but that three day later, He conquered death by rising from the dead! And now that He lives, we also can live through Him. (Eph. 2:1a) He has made us alive by His grace, through His gift of faith and not by our own works, so that we cannot be arrogant. As the redeemed we are the church, Christ’s bride and His just reward for His suffering! When I came to understand that as His bride, we are the reward for His suffering, it gave me a heart of gratitude for my Lord and Savior that I never had previously.

The Westminster Shorter Catechism states that “Man's chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him for ever.” John Piper has said that “God is most glorified is us when we are most satisfied in Him.” Our lives here are not about us. We have spent so much time trying to find our “purpose” in this life that we have missed the clear purpose in these simple statements. We are here for the glory of the Lord and for that purpose alone. Phillipians 2 tells us that at the name of Jesus, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. The question is when will you do that? Will you do it here and then eventually reap the benefit of the presence of God for all eternity, or will you do it later and spend eternity cursing His name in hell?

Pondering our mortality is a sobering exercise. It can lead us to despair if we have no hope in this life or it can lead to the peace of knowing that all that happens in both heaven and earth is for the glory of God.

Ken has been a faithful servant to our Lord and a wonderful friend to me. I pray for his comfort through this trial as well as for his “ultimate healing.” Mostly, I pray for Mary, his sweet wife as well as his three daughters. This will be hardest on them. Please keep them in your prayers, as they will be in mine.

Ken, you are going home soon and you will be free from the ravages of this pain and suffering. When you get there, be sure to go see Dad. I know he’ll be glad to see you! But most of all, you will finally bow on your knees and cry “Holy! Holy! Holy is the Lord God Almighty!” All I can say is what a wonderful place to be! My dear friend, “I’ll see you when I get home!”

 

On Thanksgiving, after a wonderful time with my family, my son Daniel and I met up with our friends Dennis, Chris, Trish, and Josh and went to our local Best Buy to street preach and evangelize, while people stood in line to wait for the store to open the next morning. Talk about a captive audience!

After a couple of engaging one on one encounters, a few of our guys got up to do some street preaching (including my son Daniel, who is growing in Christ right before my eyes, and I just couldn’t be happier!). At the end, Dennis stood back up on the stool and asked if there were any questions. All of a sudden a man toward the back of the line shouted out something at Dennis that I did not fully understand but apparently was a derogatory comment since Dennis said “That’s not a question, Sir!”

The man then proceeded to get out of line and walk in our general direction, yelling and cursing us as he went. When he realized that Trish was filming the encounter, he started toward her and she stopped the video. He then left the scene.

The next thing we knew, Chris was warning us to get out of the way and that man came dangerously close to running us over with the car! One thing is for certain, since the world hated Christ before us, why should we expect anything different? We are so blessed in this country to be able to preach the Gospel without any legal restraint from the government (at least that’s what the Constitution says!) because so many millions down through the ages have been persecuted, tortured, and even murdered for their faith. After the consideration that Christ Himself suffered immensely for our salvation, is it not reasonable that we suffer for His sake? This kind of makes today’s evangelical pragmatism seem trivial and trite.

Many so-called evangelicals are taking a much too pragmatic view of their Christianity and in the process are not engaging the truth with anyone in this culture. When we preach our transgression of the law, we should expect opposition. This is a culture that does not desire to know God and as such will fight it at any cost. Aldous Huxley, the noted humanist, author of “Brave New World,” and who was sometimes considered the “spiritual father” of the hippie movement, wrote in his book “Ends and Means,”

“I wanted to believe the Darwinian idea. I chose to believe it, not because I think there was enormous evidence for it, nor because I believed it had the full authority to give interpretation to my origins, but I chose to believe it because it delivered me from trying to find meaning and freed me to my own erotic passions.”

Without any moral law, man is subject only to his own passions. This is why the Gospel is so offensive to the unregenerate. They have no means of understanding unless God Himself brings life to their dead spirit. This is only accomplished in the “foolishness of preaching.” God only uses the Gospel to raise men’s spirits from the dead and we are the means which He uses to bring this about.

I am honored, blessed and humbled to be a bond-servant of Jesus Christ. Just like the Apostle Paul, I know that in my flesh dwells no good thing but it is Christ who has brought me to life and is using me to speak truth into people’s lives. This is the “Brave New World” of evangelism! Let’s use every means possible to reach as many people as we can for Christ, while we still have the open door.

Has it ever occurred to you that nothing ever occurs to God? This has been a question that has brought incredible peace and security to my own heart through many conflicts and trials throughout my own life. There have been many times that I have wondered why I am the way that I am in my own particular weaknesses and did God actually place these in my life. The only conclusion is that while God is sovereign and makes all things to work out for our good (Romans 8:28), He Himself does not place evil within us and cannot be culpable in our sin. Sin is the result of Adam's rebellion and because of his sin, all of us are born with the sin nature. Therefore, before we can consider the remedy of sin, we must admit that we are born in sin and are already condemned (John 3:18) before the most Holy and Righteous God. As such, we have no standing whatsoever to accuse Him of creating our sinful condition. It is only after our repentance can we say with Paul, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (I Corinthians 5:17) At that point, we can make a new start. It is with this background in mind that I discuss this news story.

As many of you have undoubtedly already heard, Ray Boltz, writer of such songs as “Thank You”, “The Anchor Holds,” and “I Pledge Allegiance To The Lamb,” has announced that he is a homosexual. Before I go any further, I do not believe that homosexuality is any worse of a sin than any other. I have sin in my own life that rank right up there, so I do not want this discussion to come across as self-righteous in any way.

Honestly, my first reaction to Ray's announcement was one of pity, because any type of sexual sin, from simple lust while surfing the internet (a much too easy temptation these days!) all the way to the most brutal sexual assault, is devastating not only to the one committing the sin but to their family and friends as well. My second reaction was one of fear for Ray's soul. The Bible clearly teaches that the only path of reconciliation with God comes only through repentance and faith. In an interview with the Washington Blade, Ray said,

“I'd denied it ever since I was a kid. I became a Christian, I thought that was the way to deal with this and I prayed hard and tried for 30-some years and then at the end, I was just going, ‘I'm still gay. I know I am.' And I just got to the place where I couldn't take it anymore … when I was going through all this darkness, I thought, ‘Just end this.'”

No mention of repentance. This is so typical of the “Come to Jesus, He has a wonderful plan for your life” message that is so prevalent in a great many methods of evangelism. In discussiong his conversion to Christianity, Ray later said,

“‘That evening had a profound impact on my life,' he says. ‘I realized that this was the truth and that Jesus was alive … that's really where I made a commitment to Christ. I decided I could be born again and all of the things I was feeling in the past would fall away and I would have this new life.'”

Again, no repentance. It appears that Ray tried for many years to deal with his feelings by his own strength and merely used his Christianity to mask the problem in his heart. But isn't this all of our problem, whatever our besetting sin is? We have absolutely no ability whatsoever to be able to change ourselves. John MacArthur refers to this as total inability. Ray went on to discuss why he came out:

“‘You get to be 50-some years old and you go, ‘This isn't changing.' I still feel the same way. I am the same way. I just can't do it anymore.”

Ray is absolutely right. We cannot do it. Only by the grace of God and His transforming power through His gift of faith and the killing of our old sin nature and His gift of a new nature can we ever hope of changing. Ray continues,

“I basically lived an ‘ex-gay' life – I read every book, I read all the scriptures they use, I did everything to try and change.”

The problem here is that we cannot do it. It must be a supernatural work of God. If we had the ability to change ourselves, we wouldn't need God.

For me, the most disturbing part of the article came at the end:

“He doesn't want to get into debates about scripture and has no plans to ‘go into First Baptist or an Assembly of God church and run in there and say, “I'm gay and you need to love me anyway.”

For him, the decision to come out is much more personal.

‘This is what it really comes down to,' he says. ‘If this is the way God made me, then this is the way I'm going to live. It's not like God made me this way and he'll send me to hell if I am who he created me to be … I really feel closer to God because I no longer hate myself.'”

This is the crux of the situation. Without the solid foundation of Scripture on which to build one's life and worldview, all that is left is what we FEEL is right. At this point, who is to say whether ANYTHING is right or wrong. Without the objective moral standard of Scripture, we could use any of these arguments to justify any of our behavior. Let's say if a heterosexual adulterer used the same logic that was used in the last quote, that would be an absolutely absurd argument. Why is this any different?

In Romans 1, Paul talks of those “who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.” (Romans 1:18b, ESV) Ray does not seem to be interested in the truth, but only seems interested in following his feelings. Honestly, I fear for his soul. Is homosexuality any worse than any other sin? Absolutely not. What I am saying is that when someone allows any type of sexual sin to take root in their heart, it takes hold and grows deep into the heart and can only be rooted out by the power and grace of God. This is why Paul in 1 Corinthians 6:18-20 says, “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” (ESV) If you have never fallen to the temptation of lust, consider yourself blessed and do everything in your power to guard your heart! Christ did not pay the price of redemption so we could go and violate the very law He came to fulfill in us. Please note that I have no other agenda here but only to warn anyone who has fallen to this type of sin that when you are living in total rebellion against God, whether overt or covert, you are in a most dangerous place.

On a personal note, I had the privilege to work with Ray on his 1989 album “The Altar” and found Ray to be a genuinely friendly guy, which I hate to say was all too infrequent during my Nashville years. I still consider it to be one of the greatest events in my musical career and in my life. On that project, Ray wrote one particular song that I think is fitting in many ways. “Let's Begin Again” has one line that I believe sums this up. “Let's begin again, trusting Him and not our feelings.” The Gospel is the good news of Repentance and Faith. Without these, there is no way to begin any new life in Christ. Ray, there are many of us who are sad over your decision and certainly do not agree with you, but please know that we really do love you and are praying earnestly that you will come to repentance and “true” faith in Christ.

For anyone who is not sure of their faith, please take the time and go to http://www.needgod.org. There is nothing more important that your eternal soul and we want you to escape the condemnation that all mankind is under without Christ. Why not do it now!

Fireproof

I absolutely love the movie “Facing The Giants.” I first saw it at a Men's Ministry movie night at my church with my son, Daniel. Many of you know our story of being married for 12 years before being blessed with our incredible son, so if you have seen the movie, you know how it just tore me up. Well, it looks like the people at Sherwood have another winner on their hands. “Fireproof” is the latest offering from the production team that gave us “Facing The Giants,” and it looks like it's going to be a winner. The movie should be out in September and I for one will be in the audience! Kirk Cameron stars in the film and was on “The Way Of The Master” radio program to discuss it and said that the Gospel is very clear. Below are links regarding the movie. Enjoy!