Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Truth Found in the Book of Philippians

Philippians 2:1 Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion,
 2 make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.
 3 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;
 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,
 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped,
 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.
 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name,
 10 so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

12-23-2012 sermon at Burlington Baptist Church on this text is found HERE.

12-24-2012 Christmas Eve sermon click HERE

Merry Christmas

Below are two books that i highly recommend for defending the DEITY of JESUS...

For you younger viewers, you may enjoy the video.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Have I Sinned?

My daughter wrapped some gifts for Christmas and everyone knows that when you use the wrapping paper up, what is left is a cardboard tube that works great for a fighting sword; so there lay two cardboard swords.  I grabbed one and my son grabbed the other—and the fight was on!—until with one swipe, the porcelain manger scene went crashing to the floor.  Yikes!  We set the shepherds up, Mary and Joseph, and the manger with baby Jesus, all back in place.  But lying on the floor was a little 3/8 inch piece of porcelain; it must be the end of the shepherd’s staff… but no—it was the arm of baby Jesus! Baby Jesus got his arm broken as collateral damage in our sword fight. “Oh man, what is Mom going to think,” was being asked between the two of us as we started laughing really hard.

I apologized to my wife and promised to fix the porcelain baby arm of Jesus.  But the question is, have I sinned?  Some may say I was being disrespectful to what the manger scene represents.  They may even say I sinned because I was not remorseful and repentant over the fact, but rather couldn’t help but laugh.  Should we feel bad for laughing?  Do we ask for forgiveness?  I go back and forth between “we” and “I” because “I” was the one who struck the nativity scene, but “we” couldn’t help but laugh when we thought about the whole scene. 

Sure, I did apologize to my wife because she has had the manger scene for many years, but that is the only thing I feel bad about doing.  One may say it is all about respect and since the manger scene represents that holy night, well then breaking the arm of baby Jesus and not feeling remorseful and repentant is downright wrong!  If someone was to say this, I would just reply, “Well, if that is how you feel and if you were to break the porcelain arm of Jesus and you want to cry, mourn, repent, and seek forgiveness for doing so, then that is between you and the Lord.”  But how many of you would have a problem with that attitude as well?  How many of you reading this have a problem with nativity scenes in the first place?

Some people really like nativity scenes and may even find it as an occasion to think about the miracle of Christmas. 

This brings up another issue, and that is, are you less spiritual if you don’t have manger scenes?  A few years ago a Christian gentleman in our town couldn’t believe I didn’t have an outdoor manger scene.  He said, “You’re a Christian and you don’t believe in having a manger scene as a witness at Christmas?”  “No, that is not how I celebrate Christmas,” I added.   I believe that, as a Christian, I get to think about, worship, and adore the Lord Jesus Christ all year round by being connected to a local body of believers and by verbally witnessing to others.   I told him that I didn’t think it was wrong for him to have one, but I told him he needs to be careful in judging other persons’ Christianity based on whether or not they have an indoor or outdoor manger scene.

In close, could this whole discussion come under the application points made in Romans 14?  Take time to read Romans 14 and if you want to let me know what you think about this issue, please send me an email at

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving Thoughts

Ps 107:1-8  Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, for His lovingkindness is everlasting.  Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness, and for His wonders to the sons of men! Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness, and for His wonders to the sons of men!   Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things, and consider the lovingkindnesses of the LORD.

Col 3:15-17 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms {and} hymns {and} spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, {do} all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

1621 Thanksgiving quote:
Edward Winslow, who later became the third governor of Plymouth Colony, wrote one of the two surviving eyewitness accounts of the Harvest Festival of 1621, "And God be praised, we have a good increase . . . . Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling (ie, bird hunting) that so we might after a special manner rejoice together."

A Few Presidential Thanksgiving Proclamations (there are many more than these):

George Washington's 1789 Thanksgiving Proclamation:

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me "to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:"

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war...

James Madison's 1815 Thanksgiving Proclamation:

The senate and House of Representatives of the United States have by a joint resolution signified their desire that a day may be recommended to be observed by the people of the United States with religious solemnity as a day of thanksgiving and of devout acknowledgments to Almighty God for His great goodness manifested in restoring to them the blessing of peace. No people ought to feel greater obligations to celebrate the goodness of the Great Disposer of Events of the Destiny of Nations than the people of the United States. His kind providence originally conducted them to one of the best portions of the dwelling place allotted for the great family of the human race. He protected and cherished them under all the difficulties and trials to which they were exposed in their early days. Under His fostering care their habits, their sentiments, and their pursuits prepared them for a transition in due time to a state of
independence and self-government. In the arduous struggle by which it was attained they were distinguished by multiplied tokens of His benign interposition. . .

Abraham Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation:

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.

I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.

My 2012 Thanksgiving sermon: A Life of Thanksgiving

Thursday, October 25, 2012

[*For Pastors Only" ] Pastor Appreciation Video

My wife and I both enjoy listening to the preaching of Tom Schreiner. As a pastor, this was a very encouraging sermon! Schreiner's commentaries (Romans & Galatians) and other books are excellent and really helpful. His sermons are equally beneficial for your ministry. Every pastor should listen to other preachers, and Tom Schreiner is on my list of preachers to download.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Randy Alcorn Article: Election 2012 Part 4: Do the Candidates Have Different Positions on Abortion and Does it Matter?

Take time to read this article:

Alcorn closes his article with the following:

 "All advocates of legalized abortion, all candidates who defend abortion, and all who vote for those candidates, have one thing in common—they were not aborted. Had they been, they would not be here to run for office. And you would not be here to vote."

Sunday, September 2, 2012

A Great Explanation of Mormonism

What is Mormonism? Who is Joseph Smith? Are Mormons Christians? James White, in less than 22 minutes, gives the best explanation of Mormonism that I have ever heard.  Check out here:

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

July 4th 2012: Thankful for Religious Freedom

As we think about the birthday of our country, we should all be thankful for the religious liberty that we have.    My daughter just came back from a five week mission trip to Ghana.   The group that she was with had a great experience sharing the gospel on university campuses in cities and remote villages.  

She attended worship services with the Ghanaian people (below)  

She said that they never felt that they were in danger.   But, for Christians in many nations in Africa the story is quite different.   On July 1st, in Kenya, 18 people were killed in attacks while they were at church.  This year in Nigeria, extremists carried out terrorist attacks on Christians at Christmas, killing 44 people, and at Easter, killing 41

Update: Nigeria's persecuted Christians need help from U.S., ERLC
By Tom Strode Jul 18, 2012
click here
 Last year, more than 765 churches were destroyed in the country, a Nigerian spokesman said. On July 7th and 8th, 100 hundred Christians were killed in Nigeria.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Must Read Article: Behold the Horror of Abortion

Denny Burk has written a heart wrenching blog post on the horror of China's one child policy and forced abortion.  Read his article here and also the link in his article from a website called, All Girls Allowed

Monday, May 21, 2012

Missions Here and Abroad: The Local Church & Our Role in the Great Commission

Northbrook Baptist Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa is hosting the following conference in June:

The Missions Here and Abroad conference will include sessions such as “The Great Promise: Power for the Witness”, “Neighborhood Outreach”, “Global Outreach”, “The Gospel and Contextualization”, and a Panel Discussion.

Main Speaker: Kenny Stokes, Lead Pastor, Downtown Campus, Bethlehem Baptist Church
Theme: The Local Church and the Great Commission
Dates and Times: June 22-23. (Friday, 7-9:30pm; Saturday, 8am-Noon)
Schedule: Click this link for the detailed schedule.
Cost: $10 (Cash or check accepted at the door or pay registration fee online)
Northbrook Baptist Church
1700 Boyson Road NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402
Have a question about the conference?
Church phone number: 319-393-8669

click here for more info.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Resources for the King James Only Debate

If you have read pamphlets, papers, tracks or books that compare the NASB or NIV to the KJV and you haven’t read the other side of the debate— I invite you to read the follow books:

  •  Author: James White
  •  Book: The King James Only Controversy: Can You Trust Modern Translations? Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers; 2 Upd Exp edition (June 1, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 0764206052 
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764206054 
  • Price on Amazon: 10.76

  • Author: Roy E. Beacham (editor)
  • Book: One Bible Only?: Examining Exclusive Claims for the King James Bible [Paperback]
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Kregel Publications (April 5, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0825420482
  • ISBN-13: 978-0825420481
  • Price on Amazon: 13.25

  • Author: James Price
  • Book: King James Onlyism: A New Sect
  • Hardcover: 658 pages
  • Publisher: James D. Price Publisher (2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979114705
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979114700


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Great Sermon by Matt Chandler

My wife and I listened to a great sermon as we traveled last weekend.  We talked about its content for some time.  We both agreed that it was a true blessing so we recommend it to your spiritual ears.

Matt Chandler Session 4 at Lead 2011 in Auburn Maine. “Which You Received” Romans 8.28-37

We hope you are blessed as we were.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Great Resource for Free: Knowing God (J.I. Packer)

I have recommended this book to many over the years.  It has sold over a million copies.  Get the audio free this month (1-2012) here: