Thursday, November 19, 2015

Sacred or Secular

Jesus Christ—the LORD. In my life all things have become sacred. 

My birth was sacred. God through his WORD says this, Psalm 139:13 It was God who made me. Before I was in my mother’s womb he knew me. Jer. 1:5 It was God who, “formed the way I think and feel. He put me together in my mother’s womb.” This makes my life sacred.

My marriage is sacred. In the beginning of mankind starting with Adam, God provide a helpmate. What God did for Adam, he did for me. Listen what Adam had to say, “Finally! One like me, with bones from my bones and a body from my body. She was taken out of a man, so I will call her ‘woman.’”24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife. In this way two people become one. It was by the direction of the Holy Spirit that I found my wife. That makes my marriage sacred.

My education is sacred. Paul instructed Timothy to study to show himself a proven student of the WORD of God. My education required me to do my best to be the kind of person God will accept, and give myself to him. Be a worker who has no reason to be ashamed of his work, one who applies the true teaching in the right way. My education was a sacred duty to become knowledgeable in the WORD of God so that I might teach the right TRUTH.

My employment is sacred. I have been commanded that whatever I do, do my work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord I will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom I serve.

My family is sacred. I am commanded to love my wife just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. I am commanded to love my children. Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

My daily life is sacred because it is a gift from God. I have been commanded, don’t worry and say, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ That’s what those people who don’t know God are always thinking about. Don’t worry, because your Father in heaven knows that you need all these things. What you should want most is God’s kingdom and doing what he wants you to do. Then he will give you all these other things you need. So don’t worry about tomorrow. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Tomorrow will have its own worries.

My meals are sacred. Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. Acts 2:46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts.
My worship is sacred. I am commanded to worship with believers. Hebrews 10:25 (KJV) 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

My Christian life is sacred. I have been called to be light and salt in the world. Not in a church building or within the four walls of confinement but in the world. I have a commission to act upon that calling. I am to preach the gospel to everyone, everywhere and every day.

So why do I look at my whole life as sacred? Because the devil would like for me to separate my spiritual life from my daily life. There are those Christians who have fallen for the lies of the devil that we are to separate our faith from the world. This lie is called the “wall of separation”. We are to divide the sacred from the secular. As Christians have we forgotten who Christ is? Let me remind you “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-- all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.… Col 1:17

So let me ask this question, with Christ what is secular? Nothing! All things are sacred. As Christians we are not to separate our lives into sacred and secular. The reason we are losing the spiritual battle in our homes, our church, our community, our state and our nation is that we have given control of our spiritual sacred lives to the devil. We have forsaken our faith when we bought into the lie of the “wall of separation”. We allowed the world to take away our power and authority.

When we talk about the Kingdom of God what do we actual think the Kingdom is about? The central theme of the message of Jesus Christ was the Kingdom of God. Let me say this, a Kingdom is not built in the four walls of a church building. We cannot build the Kingdom the God within the confines of a building. The Great Commission is a call to spread the good news of the Kingdom of God. The message of Jesus Christ is summed up in this the gospel of the kingdom. How can I separate my life into sacred and secular when I am to work for the Kingdom of God? 

Salvation means we have entered into the Kingdom. The hope we have as Christians and the comfort we gain comes from being in the Kingdom of God. My life is sacred because I seek first the Kingdom of God. Jesus himself summarizes his teaching about all of inspired writers when he said,: “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34).

So how can my government, the Supreme Court, elected leaders or bureaucrats tell that I must worship within the confines of my church when I cannot separate what is sacred in my faith to a secular world. Why is it that what I deem sacred, the secular has invaded without resistance. Let me explain.

The government does not have the authority to decide who is a minister but they do. They do not have the authority to decide how my church can show charity, but they do. They do not have the authority to tell me as a pastor what I can say about people running for office, but they do. They do not have the authority to tell me as a Christian who I can do business with, but they do. They do not have the authority to tell me where I can pray, but they do. They do not have the authority to tell where I can assemble, but they do. They do not have the authority to tell me what I can preach, but they do. 

To those individuals who would say Christians need to separate their faith from the secular, do not practice what they preach. The secular had invaded the Christian faith to the point they are regulating the sacred. The government does not believe in the sacred, they believe all things are secular, because this is the message of the devil. The conflict we are in, is spiritual, Satan is determined to remove the power and authority that God has given the Church by using the lie that there is a “wall of separation” between sacred and secular. If you have fallen for the lie, you have joined the wrong side in the battle. You have allowed the lie to convince you, that it is OK for you to live two separate lives—sacred and secular. Jesus told us we cannot serve two masters, you will love the one and hate the other. 

The Problem with American Christians is found in Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 6:16
This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look. Ask where the old road is. Ask where the good road is, and walk on that road. If you do, you will find rest for yourselves. But you people have said, ‘We will not walk on the good road.’ That road is the sacred road, the road to the Kingdom of God.

The Results of Choosing the Wrong Road

Leviticus 26:36-38 36 The survivors will lose their courage in the land of their enemies. They will be afraid of everything. They will run around like a leaf blown by the wind. They will run as if someone is chasing them with a sword. They will fall even when no one is chasing them. They will run as if someone is chasing them with a sword. They will fall over each other—even when no one is chasing them. “You will not be strong enough to stand up against your enemies. You will be lost in other nations. You will disappear in the land of your enemies. 

When we divide our lives into the sacred and secular, we do not know where we stand and have no power and authority in our lives. We will end up dead.

Luke 12:9 But if you stand before others and say you do not believe in me, then I will say that you do not belong to me. I will say this in the presence of God’s angels. 

You cannot live a sacred life and secular at the same time. You cannot say you are a Christian in some things and not in others—you are a Christian or you are not.

What are we to do?

Ephesians 6:11
Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Your faith is your defense against the lies of the devil. Lift up your shield.

Stop The Killing

Since the late 1600’s the Quakers have sought peace.  This was not a wimpy, run from the problem peace but face the root of the problem.   We know that wars and fighting proceed from the lusts of men, as stated by James 4. 1—3.  The occasion of war, and war itself is a direct result of envy, greed and lust.

It is not an honor, nor an example of manhood or religious righteousness, to murder harmless people, who have not raised a hand against the jihadist or even pointed a weapon towards them. The bombing of the Russian aircraft that took 224 live was not an act of bravery, it was a terrorist act. However, there are two sides to the coin.  No one was covering the deaths that were occurring in Iraq and Syria as civilians were dying at the hands of the French and US government. 

Back in August of this year, the air campaign against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has killed more than 450 civilians, according to a new report, even though the US-led coalition has so far acknowledged just two non-combatant deaths.

More than 5,700 air strikes have been launched in the campaign with its impact on civilians largely unknown.

Now Airwars, a project by a team of independent journalists, is publishing details of 52 strikes with what it believes are credible reports of at least 459 non-combatant deaths, including those of more than 100 children.  Does this side of the war matter?  Iraq has suffered a tremendous loss of civilian life including children.

Have we forgotten the words of Madeleine Albright when she said, “500,000 dead Iraqi Children was "worth it”.  This woman ends up getting “the highest honor” that America bestows upon civilians — the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

How many innocent children will be killed by the greed of the nations that are now fighting in the Middle East?  What is the real reason the US government wants to overthrow Assad?  Could it be that he has stood up against the globalist elite and they didn’t like it? 

It is easy for me to understand the anger and hatred that is in the hearts of those who have lost loved ones.  But do we stop to think of the thousands of innocent families who lost their loved ones from drones and air strikes to kill a few jihadist?

There is a solution to the problem.  Stop listening to the globalist leaders that are pushing for a regime change in every Muslim country.  Look what has happened in every nation that the US government, along with other nations, who have brought about a regime change--disaster.  The countries we “liberated” from a cruel dictator has been turned over to the jihadist, who are even crueler than the dictator removed from power.

It is time we reject the idea that we can ship millions of dollars’ worth of weapons to “moderate freedom fighters” and expect them not to fall into the hands of the jihadist.  The idea that we or any other nation can bomb the jihadist back into the 8th century is wrong.  What I cannot understand is that the US government along with other governments continue to overthrow sovereign governments and replace them with leaders from the Muslim Brotherhood that is the supporter of the jihadist.  

What is frustrating about this entire Middle East issue is the leadership in this country both Republican and Democrat want to destroy Iran and Syria.  We have already established the fact the death of the innocent is of no concern to our leaders.  In the words of George Fox, the Quaker Founder, "Therefore in love we warn you for your soul's good, not to wrong the innocent, nor the babes of Christ, which he hath in his hand, which he cares for as the apple of his eye; neither seek to destroy the heritage of God, nor turn your swords backward upon such as the law was not made for…”  Not only have Muslims been killed, but thousands of Christians have died trying to flee from the destruction brought down on every country we have made war on.

The French reaction is just like the 9/11 attack on American, the attacker were not from Iraq or Afghanistan but from Saudi Araba.  Who did we attack—Iraq.  Why?  We needed a regime change. So the French start bombing Syria in retaliation for the attacks, though it is not known where exactly the attackers were from. Thousands of ISIS fighters in Syria are not Syrian, but came to Syria to overthrow the Assad government from a number of foreign countries -- including from France and the US.

Stop and think about this whole Middle East problem, the US government along with its allies want to overthrow Assad.  What better reason than to retaliate against Syria. Don’t you find it interesting that ISIS and the US government along with its allies want to overthrow both Syria and Iran?

The French in particular have been very active in arming even the more radical groups in Syria, as they push for more political influence in the region. Why do they still refuse to believe in the concept “what goes around, comes around”? Is it because the explanation that, “they hate us because we are free,” makes it easier to escalate abroad and crack down at home?  Maybe if we just stop the killing and got out of the Middle East, the problems would be solved?   

It is my fear that soon we will see another global war which will be more devastating than the last two global wars.  The Middle East is not the only war in which we have stuck our nose.  The American people need to rise up and stop the direction of destruction in which our leaders are leading us

Loss of Religious Freedom

At the risk, of some readers of my post, missing the message I wish to convey, I am concerned about the loss of Religious Freedom.  I am not a prophet, nor the son of a prophet, nor do I wish to go down the road of saying what will happen soon.  However, I can see the direction our leaders are taking us, and I am concerned.  My concern is not so much what has been happening in the secular world but in the spiritual world.  So, I am sharing this with the hope the message is received as intended.

Under the 10th Amendment, there is a separation of federal and state powers.  The federal government does not issue a marriage license nor does the state issue a marriage license, it is issued by the county.   If under the new ruling of the Supreme Court, the county clerk must issue a marriage license base on the 14th Amendment under the Equal Protection Clause which requires each state to provide equal protection under the law to all people within its jurisdiction.  Will marriage requirements be established by the federal and taken from the state control? (This clause was the basis for Brown v. Board of Education (1954), the Supreme Court decision that precipitated the dismantling of racial segregation, and for many other decisions rejecting irrational or unnecessary discrimination against people belonging to various groups.) If the Rowan County Clerk is in violation of the ruling of the Supreme Court and must comply, then marriage is no longer sacred but secular and controlled by Federal rather than State law.  

As the battle over marriage continues, it will only be a short time before State laws banning polygamy may be unconstitutional, since they are based primarily on moral grounds. In 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling in Lawrence v. Texas which might have some bearing on polygamy. The case involved two homosexual males who had been convicted of same-sex behavior in private. At the time, this was a criminal act in Texas. Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the majority stating: 

"The case does involve two adults who, with full and mutual consent from each other, engaged in sexual practices common to a homosexual lifestyle. Their right to liberty under (the Constitution) gives them the full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government...[They] are entitled to respect for their private lives...The state cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime...In our tradition, the State is not omnipresent in our home...Liberty presumes an autonomy of self that includes freedom of thought, belief, expression, and certain intimate conduct." 

Justice Scalia wrote that the majority Justices pretended that they have left enough freedom:

"... so that we need not fear judicial imposition of homosexual marriage, as has recently occurred in Canada...Do not believe it...[The majority opinion] dismantles the structure of constitutional law that has permitted a distinction to be made between heterosexual and homosexual unions, insofar as formal recognition in marriage is concerned." 

He also wrote that laws against bigamy, adultery, prostitution, bestiality, and obscenity were susceptible to challenges. The immediate effect of this ruling was to overturn anti-sodomy laws in 13 states. But the long-range consequences of the decision may well extend far beyond the activities of gays, bisexuals, and lesbians. Justice Scalia and many other constitutional authorities have suggested that this decision makes it impossible for states to establish or enforce laws criminalizing behavior if the only basis for the law is that the activity is considered immoral by most of its citizens. In short, states can no longer legislate what may be regarded as Christian morality. 

Justice Kennedy's statement might be interpreted as implying that American citizens have the right to engage in various behaviors "without the intervention of the government” even including the choice of more than one spouse. States may no longer be able to criminalize polygyny and polyandry -- one woman marrying more than one man. 

As we have seen with the Supreme Court ruling regarding same-sex marriage, the federal government can and does infringe upon the rights of a state in respects to what constitutes a legal marriage law.  Although it has not been tested in court, the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage is to be recognized in all states, one need only to substitute same-sex marriage with “polygamous” or your choice of immoral sexual behavior to see what is going to happen next.