Archive for June, 2022

FROM AGE TO AGE TO ALL ETERNITY

June 26, 2022

In the Summer of ’69, as I was flying across the Pacific in an F-100, eastbound for home after a massive dose of the darkest side of humanity, The Fifth Dimension was announcing the dawning of the Age of Aquarius and taking the youth of the world by storm. It was to be an age “when peace will guide the planets and love will steer the stars … with golden living dreams of visions.” While a few hundred thousand of their patriotic peers continued to fight and die in the Asian jungle, freeloading flower children, branding us warriors as baby killers, were gathering in a pasture near Woodstock, New York, celebrating the new age by frolicking, fornicating, and frying their brains on exotic substances, trying to “let the sunshine in” on their golden visions.

Of course it did not end well. A lifetime later it’s eventide in an Age of Absurdity and lost souls are still trying to let the sunshine in without the Son, wandering further and further from reality and ultimately into eternal darkness.

As the shadows lengthen on my brief day, our Sovereign God has used the Supreme Court to provide a divine bright flash of light, a powerful reminder that he still reigns. With one lightning bolt he has destroyed the federal legal cover for the baby killers of this age–the accusers of the previous age.

I am so looking forward to the dawning of the Age of Everlasting Ecstasy, in perfect peace and love in the glorious presence of our Sovereign God. It will not be an hallucination, but the ultimate reality, rejoicing with a joy unspeakable and never a morning after. By God’s grace I am assured of finding what the flower children in their Luciferian logic have been looking for in all the wrong places. The reality is the Son reigns from age to age to all eternity.

“I said in my heart, ‘Come now, I will test you with pleasure; enjoy yourself.’ But behold, this also was vanity.  I said of laughter, ‘It is mad,’ and of pleasure, ‘What use is it?’ I searched with my heart how to cheer my body with wine… I kept my heart from no pleasure…Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind” (Ecclesiastes 2:1–3,10,11). 

But, by his grace, “I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure.” (Psalm 16:8–9).

See you in church.

THE SMALLEST ACT OF KINDNESS

June 22, 2022

If you waste as much time as I do with internet daily news and social media you have heard or read complaints about how the Veterans Administration takes care of vets’ health needs, but you have never heard one from this vet’s obscure corner of the internet. Fifty years ago I completed a six-year hitch as a US Air Force aviator and for the last 15 years I’ve been getting a monthly check for grocery money from the VA because one of my old-age maladies might be related to my flying through some orange clouds over the jungle of Southeast Asia. In addition the VA has reserved a beautiful patch of grass in the National Cemetery just up the road under which I will await Jesus’ return, with a gravestone and all of the appropriate stuff engraved on it, all at no cost to my family. I also get hearing aids, batteries, glasses and annual physical exams grattis. Unlike my private practice doctors they are proactive and not in a hurry to usher me out the door. Local Veterans Services provides chauffeur service that picks me up at my front door and takes me to my medical appointments and brings me home, even though I can and regularly do drive myself around. It’s all pretty sweet deferred compensation. I’m one blessed vet.

For all of this and more if I needed it I am most grateful for my fellow taxpayers’ expression of gratitude to me. But no expression has touched my heart more than the smallest unexpected act of kindness that occurred recently. A new pair of bifocals from the VA showed up in the mail, complete with a revolutionary glass cleaning cloth. It had one of the most underused phrases in today’s English language printed all over it–THANK YOU.

You are welcome, USA. It was my honor to serve.

…AND THEN THERE ARE FATHERS….

June 19, 2022

Read this as an addendum to my previous post:

There are fathers and then there are fathers … This weekend while I was composing my Father’s Day lament for the lack thereof, an old fighter pilot friend was celebrating the weekend with his wife and mother of their grown children whose longtime dementia-ridden mind does not know him or where she is but he still cares for her at home … and an aging mentally disabled son out on a weekend pass from his institution. Richard is in a class of Dad’s all his own. This same old dedicated vet years ago took a hit in the front cockpit of his RF-4 Phantom over North Vietnam that left him unconscious. The book says the plane cannot be safely landed by the backseater of a Phantom but there were no other options. He revived on short final to take over the plane and landed it, went through months of rehab and flew again. His Father’s Day greeting to me was waiting on my phone when I awoke this morning.

“Happy Father’s Day, Richard,” seems woefully inadequate. And so does my undying admiration. Richard and I have had some long discussions over the internet and telephone text, and he knows we cannot earn our way to heaven, that we are saved by God’s grace, not works. It is impossible for one human heart to truly know another–we can’t even know our own–but Matthew 7:20 says ” you will recognize them by their fruits.” Richard will one day fly yet again, with the angels…forever.

THE MUSTANG MENACE

June 19, 2022

This may be the last year we’re allowed to say Happy Father’s Day, if, God forbid, the woke folks have their way. Happy Sperm Donor Day has a nauseating ring to it, but it does have the benefit of being truth. There are far more of the latter these days than there are of the former, and that explains the crumbling core of our culture–abdicated fatherhood. 85% of youth who are currently in prison grew up in a fatherless home. (Texas Department of Corrections) The Uvalde School shooter is the latest case in point:  “No father or father figure in his life, a mother who reportedly struggled with drug addiction, no church or community of any kind, no real friends except those he met through social media.” 24% of all American children grow up in fatherless homes. I  suspect the number of sperm donors who have abdicated fatherhood in place is an even greater percentage.

Pastor/blogger Andrew Isker says “this spiritually sick society of modern America is … an assembly line of geldings.” That metaphor works well to support his assertion that “the church is suffering hard times brought on by soft men.” But it seems to me, in this age of the triumphant “self,” that the assembly line is turning out an awful lot of mustangs, untamed beasts whose driving force is their baser instincts with no regard for consequences or obligations. This mustang menace has made a mess of God’s mandate for mankind. Aside from being the sires of our prison population, I would venture the vast majority of the millions of our aborted children were bred by American mustangs. Lord, have mercy.

This Father’s Day we came be thankful for God-fearing fathers, faithful stud horses persevering in the traces for their families. They are the work horses that built this great nation under God. We need more such horses. He who created the world from nothing and made the donkey talk (Numbers 22:28) could round up the mustangs, too, break them to harness and make them a part of our team and pull this sinking culture out of this daunting morass. Our Sovereign God, who regenerates the human heart and inclines the will to faith in the Risen Savior, can tame the most lecherous will.

It’s going to take that kind of miracle, lest our land suffer utter destruction. Lord, to that end we pray this Father’s Day. Amen.

And he [Elijah] will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction” (Malachi 4:6).

See you in church.  

A TIME FOR TELEMACHUS

June 12, 2022

In 404 A.D. Rome was well into its cultural and moral demise and nearing its fall. The Coliseum was filled daily with its citizens entertained by gladiators fighting to the death. One day, as the gladiators were fighting, a scrawny monk named Telemachus came out of the stands into the arena, shouting over and over, “In the name of Christ, stop!” At first the crowd was amused, thinking it was part of the spectacle, but then began to jeer the pathetic sight. One gladiator ran Telemachus through with his sword. With his dying breath he cried out, “In the name of Christ, stop!” The crowd went silent. Then someone headed for the exit. Soon the entire Colosseum was empty. Emperor Honorius, so moved by Telemachus’s martyrdom, banned violent death as a  form of entertainment in the Roman Colosseum forever. (Details of the exact means of his death in the arena vary, but the Catholic Church has made him a saint.)

America, whose cultural decline is mirroring Rome’s in alarming ways, needs a Telemachus today … and a leader with the conscience and courage of Emperor Honorius. Our nation, founded on Biblical principles, has designated special days to celebrate Biblical and historical events and persons. In the year our Lord 2022, our government has designated the entire month of June to “celebrate” a Vanity Fair parading the sins of Romans 1.  Kevin DeYoung says the…”parade may not be a march to cultural suicide as much as it is a sign that we are already dead.” It’s a parade of tormented souls defying Our Maker and declaring they are their own creator–another sad milestone in a much larger parade as one nation under God marchs to apostasy. Al Mohler, President of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, calls it “a rebellion …taking place at the expense of objective truth, the order of creation and the entire moral order of the universe.”

“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Proverbs 14:12). The very title given to this month of celebratory rebellion is what God hates: “Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate” (Proverbs 8:13b).

My head spins. Tears fall. I am a stranger and pilgrim in an alien land. God help us!

Romans 1 concludes its list of sins and perversions with this final note of condemnation that describes our Vanity Fair: “Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.”

John MacArthur says our nation is suffering under God’s judgement, as summarized in Romans 1:28–“…God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.” Evidence abounds.

America, God has shed his grace on you like no other nation in the world for two-and-a-half centuries, and yet…
–You have forgotten the God of the Bible while your government outlaws God’s Truth and legalizes sin.
— You kill your unborn children by the millions and fight tooth-and-nail to keep a legal cover that in itself is in defiance of God’s law.
— You have become a nation of idol worshippers, the biggest one by far being “self.”
— Countless pulpits across America that once proclaimed God’s Gospel Truth have gone silent or capitulated to the culture. If that flickering Gospel Light goes out in America, it will be worse than the sun being swallowed by a black hole.

In the name of Christ, stop this rebellious parade to perdition!

Christian, come to church and weep and pray and humbly seek his face this Lord’s Day and by grace we will persevere in his promise. Our God still reigns and heaven awaits his children.

PENTECOST: The Birth of the Church

June 5, 2022

Jerusalem was the city of David fallen from grace. It had a stiff-necked citizenry with a history of stoning prophets, and only recently it had crowned its rebellious reputation by brutally crucifying the Son of God. Yet where did our Sovereign God plan the first sermon offering the way of repentance and pardon to be preached? It was that very same den of iniquity where angry mockers raised their fists and demanded that the blood of God’s own Son be upon their heads and that of their children–Jerusalem.

“When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2:1–4).

Thus was the church born, not with a bang but with a mighty roar. It was like a jet swooped low over Jerusalem and firebombed, with zero collateral damage, a select gathering of people in an overcrowded town during a Jewish festival.  It was a unique firebomb. It rained tongues of fire upon the target group but did not consume, like the burning bush Moses confronted. It miraculously gave them the ability to speak in the foreign languages of those foreigners in town for the festival, telling them about the “mighty works of God.” It was a visible/audible manifestation of the Holy Spirit at work. It was the very Helper–The Holy Spirit–that Jesus had promised the disciples would come:

“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me” (John 15:26).

Peter, the same cowardly fisherman who publicly thrice denied he even knew Jesus just 54 days earlier, boldly delivered the altar call of his life before a large, skeptical, even hostile audience. Three thousand listeners were cut to the heart, believed him and were baptized (Acts 2:5-41). The same Holy Spirit represented by the tongues of fire also melted the hearts of those 3000 listeners and inclined their minds to believe.

It takes the fire of the Holy Spirit to ignite the soul of depraved man to blaze for the things of God. There is miracle-working power in the fire, power to make men bold, power to make men speak a foreign language they never knew before, power to melt and remold hard hearts, power to give blind eyes sight, power to incline depraved hearts to repentance, the same omnipotent power that hovered over the void and created the world in seven days–the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Triune God.

Those tongues of fire have not been seen since Pentecost, but the Holy Spirit has been at work setting hearts aflame for the Kingdom of God and growing his church and guaranteeing the salvation of his chosen ones–“everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself” (Acts 2:39b). So do not give up praying for that friend or family member of yours who cannot comprehend what to you is as obvious as the nose on your face–the truth of the Gospel. Neither could the obstinate souls in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit enabled them at Pentecost. Likewise it is impossible for your unbelieving friend until the Holy Spirit’s fire melts his heart and regenerates it to beat as a child of God, and that happens on God’s timetable, not man’s. Your praying for the Holy Spirit to  act on your unbelieving friend is an integral part of his plan. Keep the fire kindled.

Two thousand years on, the gates of hell have not prevailed against God’s Church, nor will they ever. (Matthew 16:18).

Happy birthday, church. See you there.


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