Friday, October 17, 2014

Homosexuality and the Bible

Matthew Vines wrote an article to reconcile the two. Let's see if it holds up to scrutiny. Check out the original article here:

Matthew Vines article

So, Matthew Vines comes out as a homosexual and then sets out on a quest to justify his sin rather than repent of it. Nothing new there. But he claims some success in convincing family and church members that are close to him.

I guess the time is ripe for that, as the Gay Agenda marches on, intent on cramming this down our throat until it is considered normal, mocking and bullying anyone who would disagree and hold to the biblical worldview.

He claims there are six relevant passages, and then attempts to twist the meaning of each one so that he can make the claim that homosexuality is not condemned as sin in the Bible.

Here's a better article on the subject: CARM Bible and Homosexuality

But let's deal with Matthew Vines' article.
For the first one he cites the story of Sodom (where we get the word sodomy from today) and Gomorrah. He doesn't reference the actual passage, however. He simply tells it in his own words and then goes to Ezekiel 16:49 for a summary that he likes better.

Let's look at that one first.

Ezekiel 16:49-50
"Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.
50 "They were haughty and did an abomination before me. So I removed them, when I saw it."

I notice that Mr Vines left out verse 50, the very next verse. I wonder why. I wonder what abomination it is speaking of, and haughtiness...like a Pride Parade perhaps?

Let's go all the way back to Genesis to get the full story in context. I suspect there is a clear reason that Matthew Vines chose to take another passage completely, instead of the original detailed account.

Genesis 19 isn't just about a "threatened gang rape". All of the men of the city came, young and old, ALL of them. And when they were struck blind by the angels, they still did not give up, groping around, trying to find the door in order to get to those men!

I would like to think that if I were struck blind, my priorities might change at that point and I would go home. Not so with these men who were so intent upon raping these strangers.

Anyway, read Genesis 19 for yourself, in context, and determine what is being taught. I don't think it's difficult to discern.

Next up, he goes to Leviticus 18:22, which seems quite clear. I guess that's why he just glosses over it, dismissing it by claiming that other OT laws given to the Israelites are now obsolete because Jesus fulfilled this law.

What? Is he saying that Jesus died so I could continue in my sin? I don't think so. You'll be hard pressed to find a verse that says that.

Then he briefly mentions Hebrews 8:13 and Romans 10:4 in an attempt to disregard the verses he doesn't like, claiming the Old Testament law is invalid today.

Maybe this is a good place to look at the OT law, the division of the law and how it pertains today. John MacArthur explains it nicely in the notes of his study Bible:

The Law can be divided into three categories: Moral, Civil, and Ceremonial.

The Ceremonial Laws (animal sacrifices, the Sabbath, etc) were pointing us to a coming Messiah, and so this aspect of the Mosaic Law has been set aside, fulfilled in Christ.

Colossians 2:14-17 l
"having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; He took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a new moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ."

The Civil Laws were written to a specific people at a specific time and specific place. The basic responsibility for the civil aspect, showing the application of the moral Law in a community, has been transferred to human government.

Romans 13:1
"Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God."

The Moral Law finds its basis in the character of God and is presented in outline form in the Ten Commandments. It still stands and applies to our lives now, having never been revoked or abolished, but finds its authority in the New Covenant.

Every unbeliever is still under its requirement of perfection and its condemnation, until he comes to Christ, and every believer still finds in it the standard for behavior.

Romans 8:3-4
"For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit."

Normally, unbelievers like to quote the most obscure Ceremonial or old Civil Laws, but the real problem they have concerns the Moral Law and submission to the Lord.


Matthew Vines would do well to dig a bit deeper, with a good study Bible like MacArthur's.

However, Mr Vines instead mentions Romans 1:26-27, attempting to minimize the issue by making the claim that Paul was really talking about lust, not homosexuality in itself. Nice try.

Next, he again goes into a completely different subject in an attempt to discredit the topic of homosexuality by using a verse about the length of men's hair (1 Corinthians 11:14). Mr Vines seems to think that if we don't hold to this one, then we can ignore other parts of the Bible, as if it were the same thing.

In answer to this, simply read through the MacArthur quote again in order to discern how the Law is divided into three sections.

Finally, Vines makes the assertion of the "last two likely references" regarding homosexuality from the New Testament. However, he doesn't quote them or even give the references.

Rather, he gives a broad, sweeping assessment that these verses were never talking about homosexuality as "committed, monogamous relationships." He claims "the Bible never addresses the issues of sexual orientation or same-sex marriage"

Well, this is because "sexual orientation" isn't something real. It's simply a preference, a choice, and the Bible clearly condemns it as sinful without the need of each individual instance of it.

Homosexuality is called an abomination, period. It doesn't matter if it's prostitution, rape, or a "committed relationship", the act itself is sin, regardless of any attempts to justify it.

I wonder if Matthew Vines meant to reference 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 in his general summary. It's worth looking at.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 ESV
"Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

Do you see how this one breaks out the "sexually immoral" as well as "homosexuality"? This pretty much kills his idea that Paul was only talking about lust and excess in Romans 1:26-27.

Sexually immoral covers lust and excess, and yet, homosexuality is listed as it's own separate subject here. No wonder he didn't quote this one or even reference it.

This one verse in the New Testament completely destroys his entire argument. Case closed.

Soli Deo Gloria

Friday, August 8, 2014

KJOnlyism

KJV Onlyism is the belief that the King James, or 1611 Authorized edition, is the only version that should be used today.
This does not mean it is simply the version one prefers, but that all other versions are corrupt.

It's nothing but a ridiculous conspiracy theory and needless division of the Body. Because of that, I see it as a dangerous cult that needs to be rebuked.

Now, they say that the "modern corruptions" take out the deity of Christ, and this or that verse is removed (yet still in the footnotes), and all sorts of other accusations.

My answer to that is, how then, do I know about the diety of Christ, and have a basic Biblical knowledge if all that is true? I mean, if it's really that dangerous, there must be some resultant heresy of doctrine due to this, right?

Well, none have been able to show me evidence of this. Heresy is not resultant upon which version of the Bible one uses. Oh, there are bad versions, such as the NWT, which has been tampered with in order to reflect the JW heretical doctrine.
But for the most part, the normal versions, NIV, ESV, NASB, HCSB, NLT, NKJV, and KJV are great for comparison.

No language translates exactly to another, so it is interesting to see which ones are translated differently, such as "gird your loins" or "get dressed". Same meaning, different words, and no change in the context or doctrine.

The KJV does this as well. Different committees translated the same word differently, such as the 6th Commandment, in Matthew says, "You shall not murder", but in Romans it states, "You shall not kill." Not a big difference, but the same word, translated two different ways!

The KJV is not without minor copyist error, just like any other version. Which is why it's a good idea to compare them.

This is actually a good thing, and what ensures us that no one person could have corrupted the Word. There were too many manuscripts, too early, that were dispersed in order to get the Good News out. No one could have gathered them all up to make some doctrinal change in every single one. Minor copyist error? Sure. But in comparing what we have, those can be overcome and do not affect doctrine.

We have also learned more in recent years. Have you heard of the Grandville Sharp Construction? In the 19th century, Grandville Sharp recognized some rules in Greek language, rules which are now named after him. These Greek grammar rules were discovered AFTER the KJV was printed, so it obviously would not be translated as clearly as we can do today.

Since the 1930's we've discovered manuscripts much closer to the originals with papyrus manuscripts from the 2nd century, that were not avialable in King James' time.

The KJOnlyists often appeal to the 400 years that it was considered the standard. However, the Latin Vulgate was the language of the people and used for 1100 years.

When Erasmus came out with a new version, he faced the same type of opposition as we see with the KJOnlyists against other versions today, only with an 1100 year standard instead of only 400.

The KJV was opposed when it first came out, and it certainly wasn't even the first English version. The pilgrims detested the KJV, calling it a liberal bible. They much preferred the Geneva Bible,dated to 1560, which was a revision of Tyndale's Bible and the Great Bible on the basis of the original languages. I'm really not sure why the KJV is picked by the cult following, rather than an older English version.

The King James Version was derived principally from early editions of the Greek text compiled by Erasmus (1469-1536), who was a Roman Catholic priest, and he had to make choices in choosing the texts he would use. And the committees used printed editions, not manuscripts when putting together the KJV.

While the King James Version is a decent translation, and quite adequate for learning the truth of the Gospel, if you like the old English language, we should realize that numerous additional ancient resources have gone into constructing the more modern Greek texts.

Thus, we see that the KJOnly position is quite misguided, thinking that the KJV is the only, or even the best, English translation.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Justice and Mercy

So, let's say that you go home tonight, and you find that all your friends and family have gotten together to throw a giant surprise party for you!  As you arrive in the neighborhood, you find cars lined up on both sides of the street, many from out of state, friends and family that you haven't seen in years.

But as you get closer to your house, you realize that something is not quite right.

The front door is ajar, with a huge footprint in the middle of it.  The door jam is broken and splintered, and you realize something is wrong, terribly wrong.  As bullet casings crunch under your feet, you push the door open to find all your friends, all of your family, everything and everyone that you hold dear in your life have been slaughtered.

And that's not all, as you look through the broken window into the backyard, you see that the killer is still there, wringing the life out of the last victim.
You scream, run out there and knock him to the ground, the police show up and haul him away.

His day in court arrives, and you are there.  He has admitted guilt, but expresses remorse, saying that he's really sorry and he will never do anything like that again.  The judge looks down from his bench and says, "I am a very loving judge, and I can see that you are truly remorseful.  You can go free."  

"What?!  Are you kidding me?  Where is the justice, this man broke the law, he must pay!"  The judge gives you a condescending look, and says, "I've made my decision, this man is forgiven out of love and free to go home."  

What do you think?  Was justice done?  

I'll tell you this.  You've created a god for yourself, made up in the human mind, that will overlook your sins and let everyone do whatever they wish, with no consequences.  
As appealing as that might be to the human mind, you can see from the story I've given you, that there might be some flaws in that idol.  

God is not ONLY love, to the exclusion of everything else.  He is also holy, righteous and just.  There is a fine to be paid, and unlike the judge in our little scenario, justice will be done in God's court.  The question now is simply, how will that fine be paid?

Let's change it up a bit.  Now, you're the criminal, the one who is guilty of unspeakable crimes and unable to pay your fine.  Just before the judge bangs the gavel to finalize your prison time, the courtroom door burst open and a man appears who says that he will pay your fine.  

THAT is what Jesus Christ did for you. You didn't deserve it, you couldn't earn it, yet He paid your fine for you, that you could be forgiven.  That is how mercy and justice work together.  

Every person in the world will glorify God after this life, in one way or another.

Either you will glorify Him as a demonstration of His love and mercy in sending His Son Jesus Christ to take on the punishment that you deserve, as you repent and trust in Him alone.

Or, you will glorify Him as a demonstration of His justice and righteousness, as you are cast into Hell for your crimes against your Creator.

Either way, the human soul lasts forever, and either way, God is glorified.

Soli Deo Gloria

Monday, February 24, 2014

Who Are You?

Bigot. Uneducated. Hateful.

The GLBT community is constantly compared to the civil rights movement and racism today, and people just accept that argument. You can't really argue with that, can you? Well, not if you let them make that presupposition in the first place.

However, I don't think it's anything like racism at all. In fact, I think it's degrading to the civil rights movement and all those who risked their lives fighting for freedom from that.

I find it, not like racism at all, but rather, like smoking, and everyone knows that it's OK to discriminate against smokers. Their bad choices damage their own health, as well as those around them. Homosexuality has also been proven to be very unhealthy to those practicing it.

Now, before you start screaming that sexual orientation is not a choice, that they're born that way, let me just state that I agree completely. We are all born with a sinful nature, my sins may manifest in different ways than yours, but it is still a sin nature with devastating effects. The biggest difference is that we need to turn from those sins, rather than attempt to legitimize them.

Enter, the Gay Agenda, set upon making the world see homosexuality as normal.

Make no mistake, it does exist. You can read all about it, and see how successful it's been, leading right up to where we are today.

The Gay Agenda

Followed by a book, expanding on these ideas a couple of years later, is this book, called "After The Ball".

After The Ball

One way of going about achieving this goal is to compare it to some other fight that has already been won and has widespread public support. Racism fits the bill nicely, compare it to that.

Next, ensure that any who would dare to oppose the agenda are dealt with swiftly and harshly, in order to strike fear into the perceived enemy so that they will lay down and do nothing. Mock them, ridicule them, bully them into silence. Oh, and while we're at it, let's make them out to be the bullies, that will make it more difficult for them to cry foul.

Now then, we must garner sympathy for the movement, so this will require some persecution, whether real or not, matters very little, but there must be the perception of persecution and mistreatment.
Here are some examples.

Assault on student

Man Admits Hate Crime False Attack

Falsified Police Report in Alleged Anti Gay Attack

Amren.com

News Video Joseph Baken

The College Fix

Bias Hoax

Gay Lesbian Task Force

And let's not forget the famous Matthew Shepard case.

abc news

Turns out, it didn't happen quite as we were told.

Another thing to keep in mind, in our already over-sexually charged society, it is very easy to remind people of their own shortcomings in order to quiet them down for fear of being seen as some sort of hypocrite.

Yet, we are not seeing any adultery pride parades, or any proud liars clubs. People are not real receptive to child molesters, but what is the real difference? Weren't they born with their sexual orientation, too?

If you simply look at it in a rational way, it becomes quite clear just how ridiculous this whole idea is. And so, you are a bigot. Uneducated. A hater.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Saturday 02-08-14

Tom and I headed out to Mill to share the Gospel, and Steve met us out there.

A couple of girls stopped for the illusion, then went through the genius test and Good Person Test (GPT). One of them said she wasn't too worried about hell because she said she had her own relationship with God.
I explained that God is just, and being just, He cannot simply overlook sin. There is a fine that must be paid. Jesus Christ is the only one that can do that.

I gave them both Gospel tracts after speaking with them, please pray that they will read them and that God will work in them both.

There was a homeless guy hanging out, so I offered him one of the "Gift For You" tracts, which includes cash. He refused, saying he wouldn't take anything with God on it. He said he had a Satanic bible in his pocket and gave me some quotes from it. Then he babbled for a while with some incoherent nonsense. We agreed to disagree, and he eventually left.

Tom was talking with a couple, and the guy was a bit argumentative. This drew the attention of the police as they were riding by, and they stopped to tell him that there is no amplification allowed on the streets of Mill. They didn't hassle us on preaching, or being set up in front of the post office, just no amplification.

A guy came up to me and asked about the tracts I was handing out. I said, this one?" showing him the Coexist tract, and he said,"Yeah, don't ever hand me one of those again."
OK, you don't have to take it, I thought, but asked him why not. He claimed it was judgmental, and we have no right to judge others.

But since that directly contradicts Scripture (John 7:24), I'm just going to have to disagree with him. Besides, we're not judging anyone, simply witnessing to them so they will know the Truth.

It will be up to them, what they do with that, but we must warn people of the wrath to come. It's the only loving thing to do.

Soli Deo Gloria

Monday, January 6, 2014

In the Beginning...

In the beginning, God created everything, and the sun still shines down on all, both good and bad.  But man misused his freedoms in disobedience to his Creator, and the whole world fell under the curse of sin.  

People weren't stupid, there has never been an atheist civilization found.  They knew there was a God and couldn't deny that fact from creation and order in the universe.  

Yet, in their disobedience and rebellion, they denied the one true God of the Bible, and made up gods of their own, fashioned after their own image.  
Worthless idols without standards, who would not hold them accountable, that would allow them to rebel and sin without consequence.  

All of this, subjected all of creation to the curse, and all of sinful mankind to the danger of punishment in the eternal lake of fire.  

So, are you any better, do you think that you deserve anything different?   Let's find out. Do you think that you've kept God's Law?  

The Ten Commandments are God’s moral standard in outline form.  We've already shown that mankind in general has not kept God first in their lives and created idols for themselves, breaking the first two commands: 1- to have no other Gods and 2- no idolatry.

Let’s go through the rest and see how you do:  

3-No Blasphemy - Have you ever used the Lord's name in vain? OMG, JC or anything like that?

4-Remember the Sabbath (Col 2:16)  - Have you set aside one day in seven to give back to the Lord who has given you everything?

5-Honor Parents  - Have you always done this or have you been a bit of a brat at times like the rest of us?

6-No Murder - The Bible says that if you hate your brother without just cause, you have violated this one and are in danger of judgment.

7-No Adultery  - Jesus said that if you've looked with lust, you've already committed adultery in your heart.

8-No Stealing  - Have you ever stolen anything, regardless of value?

9-No Lying (Rev 21:8)  - Have you ever told an exaggeration, half truth or even a little white lie?

10-No Coveting - Even our thoughts will be judged, because that's where it begins, before we actually take any action.

So, how did you do?  Would you be found innocent or guilty if judged by this standard?  

You know you’d be found guilty, none of us have kept them all.  Being found guilty, would you be let into heaven or sent straight to hell?

God is perfect, He is holy, righteous and just.  And that is why He cannot overlook your sins and just let you, a guilty criminal, into heaven anyway. Because that would not be just.  

In order for justice to be satisfied, the fine must be paid - the wages of sin is death and eternal punishment in the lake of fire.
The punishment is eternal because you’ve sinned against an eternal God.

But God is loving and full of mercy, and He created a way - one way - for you to be saved from the lake of fire, while still upholding His righteousness and remaining just.  Do you know what He did?  

He paid the penalty for you, by sending His Son, Jesus Christ - God in the flesh - who lived a perfect, sinless life and then suffered and died, crucified on a cross to pay the fine for us.  

This wasn't just physical punishment, as horrible as that was, that paid your fine.  It was the wrath of God poured out, the wrath that you and I deserve.  

Now, someone might ask, "How can one Man, suffering for a few hours, dying and then rising from the dead, pay the penalty for all man’s sins?"  
I'll tell you how.  Because that one Man was fully man, yet fully God at the same time, worth more than all of creation, and He is the only One who could pay the fine for you.  

You cannot pay your fine, because it is your own sin that condemns you.  No one else can do it, because they've all got their own sins to deal with.  

Only God Himself could live a completely sinless life, and then pay our fine by laying down that life as a sacrifice for our sins.  If Jesus is not God, then we're all still in our sins and under wrath, because salvation is of the Lord!

Only through Jesus Christ, can we be saved from the flames and made into a new creation.

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Now, what must you do in order to make this free gift your own?  This isn't some kind of automatic payment that allows you to continue in your sins, no, that would be trampling the blood of our Savior.

Hebrews 10:29 How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?

There are two things that you must do in order for this sacrifice to pertain to you:

First, you repent of your sins, which means you stop committing them, turn away from them, forsake them.   You should hate those sins that you once loved as much as God has always hated them.  

Then we trust in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation, submitting to Him as Lord and obeying His commands.

Hebrews 10:26-27 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.

You’ve received the knowledge of the truth, what you do with that now is up to you.

But keep in mind that 150,000 people die every day.  That's two people every second, off into eternity, and at that point, it's too late to change your mind. You’ve got to be made ready on this side.  The Bible tells us it is appointed man once to die and then the judgment, and it says that it's a fearful thing for a sinful man to fall into the hands of the living God.  Repent and trust in Christ alone!

Don't put it off until tomorrow because you may not have tomorrow.  Today is the day of salvation!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Saturday 12-20-13

Dan and I met out on Mill Ave and began setting up our boards. A guy named Alan stopped by as soon as I had the board up. He liked the illusion and the "genius" questions, so he agreed to go through the Good Person Test (GPT).

We found that he was not as good as he had thought when we went through some of the Ten Commandments. He had broken all four of the ones we went through, and by his own admission was found to be a lying, coveting thief, and a blaspheming adulterer at heart.

Even realizing that he was not "good", he claimed that the thought of judgment and hell didn't concern him. He believed that heaven and hell are what we make of it. I pray that he realizes the error in human thinking before that day of judgment comes.
He was homeless, so I gave him a Gift For You tract that includes some money, to help him out.

A little while later, another homeless guy named Joseph showed up. He said that he had heard that you can get some money for food if you came over here and took a test.

Well, that is not exactly how it works, but let's see how you'd do.
I took him through the GPT and explained the need for a Savior. After talking to him for a while, I gave him one of the same tracts I had given the first guy with cash inside. Now I was out of those. I had more at home, but hadn't stocked up on them.

Then Dylan, another homeless guy that had got word that the street preachers were giving away money, stopped by.

I talked with him and shared the Gospel after showing him his need for a Savior, so that it would make sense, then gave him a dollar and an "Are You Good Enough To Get Into Heaven" tract, since I was out of the other ones. I normally won't give money away without a tract any more.

And then a guy named Nick, who was passing out cards for the rooftop bar stopped and talked with me for a bit. He said he was Catholic but fell away. We had a pretty good conversation, I took him through the GPT, but he didn't seem real convicted. Still, he has some stuff to consider regarding eternity.

I explained to him that none of us are guaranteed another day, and that 150,000 people die every day. We've got to get this figured out on this side.
Seeds planted, pray that the Lord would work in him.

Next I talked with a guy named Andrew and his friend. He said he was not a good person, but agreed to go through the Good Person Test, anyway.
I explained the Gospel and gave them glow sticks, as a demonstration of God's grace, with a couple of Gospel tracts to take with them.

I talked to a couple of kids that stopped to check out the sign but didn't catch their names. We went through the GPT and I gave them each glow sticks and a Gospel tract.

Then I talked to Chris, who was not a believer and claimed that he could not believe in the "tyrannical" God of the Bible, who could create people knowing that they would sin and end up in hell. I tried to give him an explanation, but as is usually the case in matters like this, he didn't want one. He just wanted to argue.
Then he went over to Dan to harass him for a while before leaving.

After that, a whole team of about five extremely tall guys stopped to check out the board and take the GPT. 3 or 4 more of them stopped by and they were all headed somewhere. I had to rush, but got them all the way through the test. I did not catch any of their names. I did give the one that answered most of the questions a glow stick, explaining that he didn't earn it because he had failed the GPT, and that it was a small demonstration of God's grace, in giving us the much larger undeserved gift of eternal life if we would repent of our sins and trust in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation.

It was a very busy night evangelizing on Mill Ave.

Soli Del Gloria