Saturday, June 30, 2012

Authority & Accountability

Romans 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

I read this week about the need for revival in America. The late Pastor Adrian Rogers wrote: that our generation doesn’t like the word authority. We don’t like to be under anybody. We’re of a generation of anti-authority figures. The anthem was, “Do your thing. If it feels good, do it.” Many of us dare not realize the vestiges of rebellion that still lurk down in our hearts. We need to give some serious thought to the question: Who is on the throne of my life today?  Pastor Greg Laurie asks the action question: “How can we change a culture that has forgotten God? I’d add, or reduced God to insignificance in the individual’s life to where God seldom crosses one’s mind. Pastor Greg goes on to say that he believes the church needs a spiritual awakening and the secular culture needs to hear the gospel. In far too many churches, evangelism has been reduced to humanistic “good works” of building community connections without mentioning sin, salvation or a Savior – the answer of the gospel, ignoring the gospel message:
1. God loves you and offers a wonderful plan for your life. 2. Man is sinful and separated from God. Therefore, he cannot know and experience God's love and plan for his life. 3. Jesus Christ is God's only provision for man's sin. Through Him you can know and experience God's love and plan for your life. 4. We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know and experience God's love and plan for our lives. Receiving Christ involves turning to God from self (repentance) and trusting Christ to come into our lives to forgive our sins and to make us what He wants us to be. Just to agree intellectually that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He died on the cross for our sins is not enough. Nor is it enough to have an emotional  experience. We receive Jesus Christ by faith, as an act of the will. - Campus Crusade for Christ

The word ‘Gospel” means “Good News”. But before you can appreciate “good news”, you have to hear “bad news”. It’s the “bad news” that makes the “good news” good. Hence, my mentor Bill’s main saying, “You have to know what you have been saved from before you can know what you have been saved to.” People who do not know that they are lost in sin and spiritually dead will not seek salvation and egotistic people think that they are too good to be damned. To get people “saved”, you have to get them to understand that they are lost. The authority of the Creator of the Universe is over all His creation and all are accountable, but we need to see also that the first spiritual law is that this Creator of heaven and earth loves us and offers a wonderful plan for our life. If the world (one person at a time) will believe in the gospel light of Jesus and follow the Lord, then a revival, a spiritual awakening, a changed culture, the salvation of souls by grace and the abundant life will be reality. God is good. All the time. That is the gospel truth. That’s good news!

In Christ, Brian

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Jeremiah 23:1-2 “Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of My pasture!” says the Lord. Therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel against the shepherds who feed My people: “You have scattered My flock, driven them away, and not attended to them. Behold, I will attend to you for the evil of your doings,” says the Lord.”

With some comments, both online & off, about the last post’s email about what was being said at her women’s Bible Study, I thought that this “live” issue should continue to be addressed and discussed. When the Truth is distorted, devastation and destruction is reaped in the lives of the people. When the sound Doctrine grounded in the Word of God goes, the church goes with it. We have seen, and continue to see, departure from biblical moral & ethical standards, to liberal secular principles based upon false ideas and teachings, which are heresies that destroy the Word of God. Theologian J. Gresham Machen (1881 – 1937) wrote: “False ideas are the greatest obstacles to the reception of the gospel. We may preach with all the fervor of a reformer and yet succeed only in winning a straggler here and there, if we permit the whole collective thought of a nation or of the world to be controlled by ideas which, by the resistless force of logic, prevent Christianity from being regarded as anything more than a harmless delusion. Under such circumstances, what God desires us to do is to destroy the obstacle at its root.”  
When the man dying from cancer said: “he had always heard one had to be saved to go to heaven.  And she said, “I don’t think so”. Then the teacher said no.” (meaning that you do not have to be saved to go to heaven), they exposed themselves as heretics that call themselves “Christians”, but deny the atonement of Christ, denying the redemption of the Savior himself - 2 Timothy 3:5 “Having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.” I’m sure that there is 2 Timothy 4:3 type words like “God is love” & “God is peace” (which is true), but where is the Word of God being taught and are they instructing in the wholesome Ways of God in sound Doctrine?  Luke 6:46  Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”
I’ve heard it’s not that they were Christians and lost their salvation. 1 John 2:19 tells us, “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.” Apostasy (the falling away from the faith) is something a pagan can never do because there is no affirmation of faith in the first place, and you cannot lose what you never really had. True Believers will never commit apostasy. Theologian R.C. Sproul explains that apostasy happens in the church by those who claim and profess to have faith, who then repudiate that faith. False doctrine produces “ungodly” life. Like a cavity or cancer, it must be removed. If we are false in our understanding of the Truth, how could we possibly be “righteous”? If you are going to live by the principles of the Word of God, you have to know what they are. But knowledge is only part of the battle. The hardest part is having the moral strength to live by those principles.  Live by Truth, be a light to the world to expose both darkness & beauty.
1 Peter 2:1-6 Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the Word, that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious. Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.”
In Christ, Brian

Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Wisdom of This World

1 Corinthians 2:4-14 “My speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man. The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

I received this disturbing email this week, and decided to address this issue that one would expect to find with unbelievers outside the Christian church, but is happening increasing more and congregations decrease in Biblical knowledge and spiritual discernment in this day and age. This young lady wrote: “I had a real problem with something that was said in my women’s bible study this week, which is led by a former Baptist preacher, 80+ years old, but still very with it.  One lady was talking about an older neighbor man that is dying of cancer. She said she went to talk to him, and that he is not a “church goer”.  The man said he had always heard one had to be saved to go to heaven.  And she said, “I don’t think so”. !  Then the teacher said no, he believed there are a lot of Christ followers that don’t even know that they’re Christians. ?!  I was floored.  I wanted to ask for clarification, but I just sat there waiting for more to be said to see if I was really understanding what they were saying.  I still don’t know for sure, I just can’t believe that’s what he meant, or what this lady that is in church regularly and in our Bible study meant.”

The comments at this church Bible Study don't surprise me, because this nation is losing their knowledge of God, the Holy Scriptures and the gospel truth. The liberal secular humanism and existentialism message has crept into everything, to where serving self and mankind is the main focus ... even in churches. I listen to and observe as many folks talk about what they "like" and how they "feel" without any reference to and in direct contradiction to the Bible. This woman saying, "I don't think so.", to the seekers statement that he had heard one must be "saved" to go to heaven, is a prime example. John 3:16, John 3:36, Acts 4:12 Romans 10:9, 1 John5:11-12, et cetera, are totally ignored, and no biblical basis at all is given. The sad thing is that this is totally based upon "unbelief", for if salvation, heaven and eternal life was able to be obtained by any other means, then Jesus died on that cross for nothing. This lady and teacher,  essentially, put themselves in the place of God, defining Christians with a different gospel. In this case, preaching and teaching the wisdom of this world, lost in unbelief. They replaced God's Plan of salvation by the gospel of Jesus, for a "everyone goes to heaven" type heresy to this dying man, who needed to hear the TRUTH, not a lie. The teacher’s statement is oxymoron because the definition of Christian is "follower of Christ", but so many people are putting their own definition in place of the Bible's, and say "I believe something else" based on human feeling & emotions (that in reality exposes their unbelief). One of the questions asked in evangelism is "When you die and appear in front of Almighty God, and He asks you: 'Why should I let you into My heaven.’ - what will you say." This needs to be asked, because we all need to know and understand that it is only by the grace of God that we are saved, by faith alone in Christ alone. Ignorance of and unbelief in God is so prevalent today that I am no longer floored, when I see or hear of it. Apostasy exists, and unfortunately we should expect it, and need to confront it. There is a rebellion against God this side of heaven, but true life and real living is found only by true faith, and the rest is just plain death and damnation. The darkness of unbelief desires to extinguish all light of God, but God will not allow it. By defending Christianity, we help bring seekers (like that dying man wanting clarity on true salvation) to a "saving" knowledge of the Savior Jesus Christ, aligned with the wisdom of God. 
In Christ, Brian

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Succeeding Temptation

James 1:13-15 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.

The other day, I was reading an article about the fallen sin nature of mankind. The author made the argument that “one sin, just like any other sin, all that is needed is the will to do so. You and I both know that being a sinner has nothing to do with power or means or opportunity. Absolutely nothing. Desire is all that is required. Period.”  His point is that the body, mind and will are weak and easily tempted by our own fleshly desires, the influences of the ungodly world system and the lures of the evil one (the devil and his demons). Who provides and meets our needs really, and who causes and what us to sin in all actuality? Power, means & opportunity for sin seem to always be present, so it is the truly strong in faith, that having the power, means and opportunity, choose to examine their feelings and emotions to do what is right in the eyes of the Lord, because they desire not to sin against God. Their central and inner-most heart’s desire is to walk with the Holy Spirit in truth, and please the Lord always. Genesis 39:9bHow then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”

The author went on to say; “You see, anything that is based primarily on feelings and emotion will often times blind you to the truth.” God is light and anything that is done in thought word or deed that is against the will of God is done blindly in the darkness of sin and unbelief of the truth. I remember my old Pastor Dave saying that we need to view the world that we live and operate in, through the window of Christ, our Lord & Savior. This simple process of gives us a perspective with proper light and clarity. The Holy Spirit’s guidance helps calm the feelings and emotions that says “ready, fire, aim”. Walk in the Spirit - Galatians 5:16 & 25.

The author comes to the conclusion that when it comes to succeeding in life, “it’s not because of ourselves, but in spite of us. My personal success is not and has never been predicated upon others, but on the Lord God Himself who watches over my every step in life. My personal success is not and has never been predicated upon who somebody taking care of me, but on the Lord God Himself who watches over my every step in life.”

Hebrews 2:17-18 “For this reason he (Jesus) had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.Keep the main thing, the main thing. The main thing is Jesus.
Success in Christ, Brian

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Exodus 20:12  Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you.
Deuteronomy 5:16 Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, that your days may be prolonged and that it may go well with you on the land which the LORD your God gives you.”
Ephesians 6:1-3 “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with a promise), so that it may be well with you, and that you may live long on the earth.

When I read something in the Bible, the Holy Scriptures, the living Word of God, I know from verses like Psalm 119:160, John 17:17 & 2 Timothy 3:16 that they are truth from God to us. Once is enough, but when the same thing is mentioned 3 times (one being one of the Ten Commandments), there is an emphasis for a reason. God created man and woman (male & female) for procreation and family; a unit designed and equipped with roles and responsibilities this side of heaven for the generations (and extended including grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins). Though, for various reasons (avoidable or unavoidable), with no disrespect, the father, mother, child family unit may be missing a father or mother, the model for the nuclear family (the nucleus of father & mother) is the “best” for a home to every family member, when it is functions as God intended. It is easy to see that the family, lacks in perfection due to our human flaws from inexperience and errors (nobody is perfect), so need and depend upon the guidance and help of the Lord daily and always. Our honoring of our fathers here on earth, mirrors our honoring of our Heavenly Father, who created and sustains us. The obedience and submission to our earthly fathers is a model image of our obedience and submission to our Father (Lord God) in heaven. I write this to build the foundation for singling out the vital role of fathers today; this day that we honor our fathers and their role in our lives.

Psalm 44:1 We have heard with our ears, O God, Our fathers have told us, the deeds You did in their days, In days of old.”

Men have many wonderful responsibilities (id est. being a loving husband – Ephesians 5:25 , providing for the family - Psalm 104:23, spiritual leader – Psalm 34:11 , protecting and caring for the family - 1 Timothy 3:5, fathering, - education, rising and training children - Proverbs 22:6 , … for a few) to be a father, dad, papa. It is certainly sad when a man does not strive to meet his responsibilities or fulfill his obligations as a godly father. But a true blessing to his wife and children when he works towards being the man that God designed and intended him to be. The greatest honor and privilege that a father can have is leading his children to a “saving” knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, advancing the kingdom of heaven within his family, and leaving a legacy for the next generation of Believers on the road to eternity, following our Lord & savior Jesus Christ. God bless the godly father! We honor you today.

Psalm 78:1-4 Give ear, O my people, to my law; Incline your ears to the words of my mouth. I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings of old, which we have heard and known, And our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.”

God & family, in Christ,

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Light of Ministry

It's been quite a week with some high points and others "not so much", but life in the Jungle is no bowl full of cherries and surely a learning experience. We learn from adversity and trials, so we can use the "bumps" in life's road to grow and mature, and help others along the way. I've come to realize that my Mentor Bill Stiles (now gone home to be with the Lord) was right in stating that in the Christian life, everywhere you look there is a need for ministry.

There truly is something to be said about thinking "positively", and should be encouraged and practiced within reason, because we cannot turn a blind eye to "wrong" in the world. Philippians 4:8 tells us: "whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." But we must be true; not everything goes well every day. There are many people hurting out there, needing love and care … (sometimes it’s us, the body of Believers in the finished work of Jesus, that can give an encouraging word or hand to assist). There are scores of folks that do not know the Lord and need to hear the “good news” of the grace of God, forgiveness of Sin, and salvation by Christ also.

This is clear in John 3:16-18, where Jesus explains:  "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son." To bring the gospel that produces “saving” faith to a lost & dying world, “already” condemned, is the marching orders as Christians today. But, lets be honest, (God’s Plan of Salvation) the “good” news of Jesus Christ is not “good” news to those who choose not to accept this “free” gift of eternal life. Continuing in John 3:19-20 Jesus explains to us the truth: "This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed."

As darkness is by definition - "the absence of light" - (you can bring a light into a dark room and the room will be lighted, but you can not bring darkness into a lighted room), evil is merely the absence of “good” and Sin is falling short of God’s standards – absence of His Will & Way. The light of Christ that the Child of God ministers is not to condemn, but expose darkness, so that the light of Truth may be seen, known and understood for those that will (by hearing the truth) then choose to walk into the light of salvation and truth provided by trusting and accepting Jesus, unto eternal life.

Will those who are in darkness call “good” evil? Call the “good” news of Jesus Christ, bad news? Many, for sure, but not the hearts that the Holy Spirit has prepared in advance to hear the gospel of Christ and will respond by believing and walking into the light. It doesn’t get more positive than that! So we do not lose heart or compromise our witness for the Lord in our life and ministry. In Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus tells us: "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Glory be to God!

Your brother in Christ, Brian

Sunday, June 10, 2012


John 15:4-5Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”

I heard an interesting analogy this week of how we, in this distractive material world, tend to not see and all too easily forget that it is not us that have the power in this life. But it is through the Providence of Almighty God that we stand, and through abiding in Christ that we are productive in life; first in deliverance, then equipped for good works, and finally to eternal life. We are not born with the “full armor of God”, we put it on to stand against schemes of the devil (Ephesians 6:11) and unless we are grafted into the Lord by regenerated mind, body and spirit, we act by the wrong intentions, purposes and goals, and maybe even come to the belief that it is by our power and ingenuity alone that we live and accomplish, equipping ourselves, detached from the true vine ... the unseen power of God. Then where are we placing the praise, honor and glory?

Sometimes, we have an up-side-down view of life where we improperly focus on our resources and our own strength, instead of properly focusing on our inadequacies, limitations, and dependency on God. In reality, it is truly like the Sports Fan (short for fanatic) that says, “We won!”. Anyone could tell that person: Hey, you didn’t personally touch a ball, run or compete … you did nothing.” But the Fan can say, “Yeah, but our champion won for us.” Jesus is our Champion. Abide in Christ and enjoy the victory.

Psalm 54:4Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.”

Grace & peace, Brian

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Relationship Breaker

Habakkuk 1:12-13Wast thou not from the beginning, O Lord my God, my holy one, and we shall not die? Lord, thou hast appointed him for judgment: and made him strong for correction. Thy eyes are too pure to behold evil, and thou canst not look on iniquity.” 

In our Friday evening small group Bible Study, we continued to look in depth at developing an authentic, genuine and meaningful relationship with our Lord God. In having a “real” relationship with God, the first step is to know and understand when we do and when we don’t, and why. In an age when so many in our society lack integrity, when our ethics and moral actions rest completely on our personal judgment, feelings, desires, and opinions, and absolutes are challenged and rejected by those who do not even see that they are truly lost. In all honesty, we have to realize that we are lost and see our need to be saved, before we can joyfully accept the rescuer. Those who do not believe that they need to be saved (physically or spiritually), will never accept a “Savior”. We need to truly know the seriousness of sin and understand the sovereignty of our Almighty God, then how our Lord God defines sin and what sin leads to in our relationship with Him and affects our life, now & eternally. Awareness and comprehension of the “Truth” is the key. Then we can willfully and purposefully work to fix what is broke, if we so choose, or not and leave in broke. We can reject or believe a lie, but we cannot say that we didn’t know. This it why we “speak the truth in love” – Ephesians 4:11-15.

Sin is a tough subject, but must be understood because it is the relationship breaker . What exactly is sin? 1 John 5:17 says “All unrighteousness is sin.” Unrighteousness is living contrary to what God says is “right”. 1 John 3:4 explains that “Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.” When we think in sin, many times we think of robbery, murder, stealing, rape, et cetera, but the Bible tells us that sin is anything that doesn’t please God or a transgression (violation or breaking) of His law. Anything that we shouldn’t do, but willfully do anyway, are sins of commission (the act of committing to and doing). James 4:17 “Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it. Failures to do what ought toward God and men are sins of omission (leaving out of account or neglecting to do). There are not only sins in deeds of action, but also sins in word and thought, like lying, lust, pride and hatred. Naturally, because of our fallen nature, when men fail to honor God and obey His Word and seek to replace Him with their own “wisdom”, it always results in tragedy. Our first instinct as lawless sinners is to build our doctrine (principles of belief) around ourselves and our self-perceived well-being. Faith is taking God at His Word, believing what He says is true.

Isaiah 53:6  “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned— every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” Iniquity is a synonym for sin meaning great injustice or wickedness, willfully choosing to walk in a way contrary to what is right in the eyes of the Lord, but look what Lord does for those who believe in Jesus, the Christ. Romans 3:9-10 says, “Well then, should we conclude that we Jews are better than others? No, not at all, for we have already shown that all people, whether Jews or Gentiles, are under the power of sin. As the Scriptures say, “No one is righteous — not even one.” And continuing in verse 23: “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” So what does sin produce? Romans 5:12Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned. We are all born sinners on the same wide road to destruction, a slave to sin, separated in our relationship with God, and dead in our sins. Don’t believe the lie (Genesis 3:4-5); sin has serious and eternal consequences. Where is salvation, redemption, and restoration to be found? Who shall save us from this slavery to sin and damnation that we earned and deserve? Good news!

John 3:16-18For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” & Romans 10:9 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” This is the Gospel! God turns defeat into victory and separation into a hallelujah! A relationship Maker.

Philippians 1:9-11And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”
In Christ, Brian

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Pharmakeia Part 1 - Drug Abuse Today

Galatians 5:19-21The acts of the sinful nature (the works of the flesh) are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

I wrote Pastor Tracy: “Could you write your thoughts on Christians & illegal recreational drug use and abuse. This is such a huge and "live" issue among Christian youth and adults today, which I'd like to have you write your biblical thoughts on. I think that Christians need to address this issue.” Here is his response …

Drug abuse in our culture is out of control.  We are surrounded by illegal drug use, prescription drug abuse, activity involving what we call “illicit” drugs or “recreational” drugs, etc., etc.  Adults, youth, and even children are “experimenting” with very dangerous stuff.  For a moment, let’s “be transformed by the renewing of minds” by the Word of God. Some Bible-based thoughts:
1. Consider Galatians 5:20 which states that one of the works of the flesh is “witchcraft”.  The Greek word for witchcraft is “pharmakeia”, where we get our English word “pharmacy”.  The definition involves “the use of drugs” and “poisoning”.  Drug abuse, not proper and wise use of doctor-prescribed medications, is akin to witchcraft!  Why and how?  Think about it.  The purpose of witchcraft is to “cast a spell” on someone to bring about the detrimental alteration of their life which leads to their destruction.  That’s exactly what drug abuse does. The purpose of witchcraft is also to “control” a life.  A drug abuser and ultimately a drug addict is certainly “controlled” by the drug, many times ruining their life, their marriage, their family, etc. and sometimes leading to death.  Drug abuse abuses and controls the person.  DUI even stands for:  Driving “under the influence”! 

2 Timothy 3:1-5 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.

2.  So why do so many people “experiment” with and then use “recreationally” something that can destroy their lives?  The answer, I believe, is found in 2 Timothy 3:4.  God in His Word clearly states that people can and do become “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God”.  Most people, young and old, abuse drugs because it makes them “feel good”.  The “high” takes the place of the “Most High”!  People feel down so they want to feel “up”.  Instead of turning to God, His Word, His Spirit, and His Son; they turn to what the world, and the god of this world, Satan, has to offer.  Drug abuse is simply one of the “pleasures” of this world, and sometimes people choose to be “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God”.

Genesis 3:1-6 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

3.  One last thought.  Sometimes drugs are called “recreational” drugs.  Think about it and look at the word.  “Recreational” is from the words “re” and “create”.  Drug abuse alters one’s perception of life.  Drug abuse attempts to “re-create” life.  Could it be, a drug abuser is not satisfied with and/or un-thankful for the life the Creator Himself has given him and wants his/her own life the way he/she wants it.  Wanting to “re-create” their life, they use “recreational” drugs.  Wow, the very essence of wanting to “re-create” one’s life is clearly seen in Genesis 3:1-6 in the Bible truth of the fall of man!  The use of “re-creational” drugs is clearly based in deciding to “be my own god”.  It is a decision to be a god, a “re-creator” of life itself.

Tracy Hearnsberger – May 29, 2012
Senior Pastor @ Little Church in the Pines – Bass Lake, California
Listen to his Sermons @ the Church Web Address :

In Christ, Brian
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