Friday, June 28, 2013

Better Way by Bizzle (Sandy Hook Tragedy)

Although I don't agree with everything in this video, I think he raps about a lot of truth worth sharing. Very moving and powerful to think about. Watch the whole thing!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Leading of the Holy Spirit (Part 3)

How to Know
                In general, those who are led by the Spirit are moved to examine their hearts and motives.  They are moved to mourn over their sin, to confess it, and to seek God’s face to enable them to be obedient. They are moved to search the Word of God daily to find out God’s desires.  They are moved to an increasing conformity to God’s will. 

Let the Scriptures Speak

Psalm 139:23-24: “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Romans 8:13-14: “For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.”

Galatians 2:20: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”


                In three ways we can know we are being led by God: First, we will be led from ourselves. We are led from confidence in our own wisdom and dependence upon our own strength. Second, we are brought to a deeper relationship with Christ. It is the duty of the Spirit to take the things of Christ and show them to us.  Thirdly, we are led away from the vanities of this world to delight in the Lord! His aim is to conform us more and more to the image of Christ.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Attack on the Family

  Scripture says this about our enemy the devil: "Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." ( 1Peter 5:8)
  As I was watching the recent movie "Lincoln" the Lord began to bring to my mind how much America has changed in the past 150 years. I started to think about how morality and law were upheld and were basic convictions in the heart of Americans back in the 1800's. Yes, they were still depraved, sinful men, but something has changed for the worst in our culture and nation. Our sense of right and wrong is not where it should be. Our moral compass is OuT oF WhAcK and it seems the Lord is given this nation over to judgment.
  Proverbs 14:34 states: "Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a reproach to any people." The god of this world, Satan has been looking to devour the thing that holds a society together, which is the family. This problem isn't just on America, but the world. But it is interesting how things have turned around on a nation that was built upon Christian principals.
  In our culture, people think that abortion, gay marriage, divorce, sex outside of marriage are just the norm and we need to embrace it and go with the flow. They justify abortion by calling it the woman's right to choose. They justify gay marriage by saying: "What hurt does it do, let them marry!" Sex outside of marriage is thought of as part of the dating process and a personal right for pleasure in one's life. Divorce is all too common and people are divorcing for more reasons than just unfaithfulness and abuse.
 All that to say, the family is under attack and has been! If there are abortions, there is no life to start a family nor add to it! If there is gay marriage.... the correct of view of marriage and what God instituted as a family, (mother and father) is dismantled. Divorce tears a family apart and kids suffer the most! Sex of outside of marriage leaves single mom's and dads, and frustrating circumstances for how the children are raised. Not to mention STD's, unwanted pregnancy's (abortion) and the cycle goes on and on!
  Way back in the beginning, God had a plan to bring Man and Woman together in marriage and start the family. The family was to represent God's nature and character and pass it on to generations of future family's. If the family is destroyed, God's purposes are destroyed. In fact, it makes it harder for our next generation to get a glimpse of what God intended.
  We are in fact under God's judgment and our nation has been given over: "Therefore God also gave them up....." (Rom. 1:24) & "For this reason God gave them up..."(Rom. 1:26). You will see that when a nation starts to rebel against what is right and aids in dismantling the family, God gives us over to our desires. This in itself is judgement because sin is a reproach to any people! 
  "But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power." (2 Tim. 3:1-4)
 We are indeed living in perilous times, but there is hope! Our hope is in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The good news that gives hope to our families! The hope that Jesus Christ transforms our sinful hearts and makes us righteous as He is righteous! Only Jesus can restore family's and take past mistakes and wash them away as far as the east is from the west! We have all sinned and fallen short of God's standards. We have all been guilty of dismantling the family in one way or the other! But Jesus died in our place upon the cross to bear our guilt and shame. He rose to conquer the penalty of death and give us life for eternity!
  We can bring nothing to the cross but our sin. All our righteous acts are filthy before God. We must come broken and bankrupt. We must repent and turn to Christ for forgiveness. He alone can save and wash us clean! He alone can restore what the enemy has stolen! Will you trust in Christ alone today?

In Christ -Dustin

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Knowing God

Question: I would like to know God, and I have asked Him to reveal Himself to me, but nothing happens. No lights have gone on, no messages in the sky, no sudden revelation. It seems to me that if God really existed, He would want us to believe in Him, and He would therefore do something tangible to let us know He exists. Is it wrong to ask for some unmistakable evidence of God’s existence?
Response: No, and the evidence is all around you—more than you need. The kind of evidence you seem to be hoping for, however, wouldn’t help at all. Suppose some message with your name in it suddenly appeared in the sky. How would you know that God put it there? Suppose right now you heard an audible voice saying loudly, “I am God! Worship me!” What would that tell you about God—and how would you know He had actually spoken?
In fact, God has spoken to you. The design of the universe is a message from God telling you of His existence as Creator and of His infinite wisdom and power. Those things that you value most highly and that you know in your heart make life worthwhile—love, joy, peace, moral purity, goodness, truthfulness, justice, kindness—tell you of God’s character. Your conscience tells you that you are morally accountable to God, that you have violated His laws and have fallen short of His perfect standard. Your conscience also tells you that there is no way you can make up for having broken God’s laws. You can’t buy Him off with sacrifice, prayers, good deeds, or ritual.
Suppose you got a speeding ticket. Would you waste your time telling the judge that you’ve driven that stretch of highway within the speed limit more often than above it? Would he let you off under the theory that your “good deeds outweigh the bad”? You know that won’t work with an earthly judge, and it certainly won’t work with God.
Would you tell him that if he lets you off this time you will never break the law again? You know what the judge would say: “If you never break the law again, you’re only doing what the law requires. You get no extra credit for that. It doesn’t make up for having broken the law in the past. The penalty will have to be paid as the law prescribes it.” You know it’s the same way with God.

The Witness of Conscience
Your conscience tells you that the only way you could possibly escape the severe penalty that God’s infinite justice must demand for having broken His laws would be if He forgives you. And you know He can’t just wipe the slate clean for no reason. For one thing, that would hardly encourage you to improve your behavior. Furthermore, it would violate His own law. He must have some way of paying the penalty Himself—a penalty you can’t pay—so that you can be forgiven by His grace.
You don’t know what that method may be, but you know that a God of perfect love and perfect justice would somehow provide it. If there is an explanation of this good news, it would surely be in the Bible. In fact, God has explained it all in those pages. Have you seriously studied the Bible and checked out the evidence that shows it is God’s infallible Word?
There is more than sufficient historic, archaeological, and scientific evidence to prove that the Bible is God’s infallible Word. But you don’t really need it. That kind of proof is like icing on the cake. If you just read the Bible with an open heart and mind, you will know that God is speaking to your heart as only He can speak.
I recommend that you begin with the Gospel of John and continue through Acts and Romans, then read those three books again. God has promised in His Word: “Ye shall seek me and find me when ye shall search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah:29:13). That is a promise you can count on! Seek God with all your heart and put Him to the test by looking in the Bible for the revelation of Himself!
An excerpt from In Defense of the Faith (pp. 47-49) by Dave Hunt

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

What Will We Be Like in Heaven?

To celebrate the publication of the updated and revised version of John MacArthur’s book The Glory of Heaven, we are posting a blog series adapted from the climactic chapter of the book. Throughout church history, not much focus has been given to the topic of what believers will be like in heaven—that ought to make these articles all the more interesting, provocative, and enlightening for you and your family. -GTY Staff

Most of us understand the concept but have a hard time envisioning anything truly perfect. Everything in our earthly life experience is flawed, imperfect.
And for those who know and love the Lord, the imperfections we are most deeply aware of often tend to be our own. I’m not speaking of the frailties of our bodies—though we feel those all too well. But the imperfections that trouble us most are not that superficial. The real problem is sinfulness that comes straight from the heart (see Mark 7:21–23).
Of course we have a tendency to be more tolerant of our own imperfections than the failings of others. We try to cover ourselves, but in our hearts we know all too well that we are woefully and sinfully imperfect. What Christian cannot echo the sentiment Paul expresses in Romans 7:24: “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”
We’re not alone in this. The entire universe suffers the effects of human sin. Paul also writes, “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now” (Romans 8:22). That’s why all we can know on earth is imperfection. All creation agonizes under the cruel effect of sin’s curse, waiting for the consummation of all things, when the curse will finally be removed.
At that time, everything will be perfect. Pain, sorrow, and the groaning of creation will finally be no more. “The ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away” (Isaiah 35:10).
Not only that, but we shall be gloriously perfected. The whole person—body and soul—will be made completely new, flawless. As the apostle John wrote, “Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when He appears we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2).
We can’t envision it now—“what we will be has not yet appeared”—but we will finally be wholly and completely Christlike. This is the very purpose for which God chose us in eternity past: “to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers” (Romans 8:29). “He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him” (Ephesians 1:4). He has already begun His good work in us, and He will faithfully “bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6). And when we see Christ, we will instantly and summarily be made utterly perfect, because we shall see Him as He is.
Heaven is a perfect place for people made perfect. Perfection is the goal of God’s sanctifying work in us. He’s not merely making us better than we are; He is conforming us to the image of His Son. He is making us fit to dwell in His presence forever. The utter perfection of heaven is the consummation of our salvation. It is the purpose for which He chose us before the foundation of the world.
Being conformed to the image of Christ is not something that will begin when this life ends. God is already performing His sanctifying renovations in the lives of His people on this side of eternity. We will explore that in greater detail next time.

(Adapted from The Glory of Heaven; all Scripture quotations from the ESV unless otherwise noted.)

Sunday, June 16, 2013

The Leading of the Holy Spirit (Part 2)

Active Guidance

                It is the duty of the Holy Spirit after God has redeemed us to Himself to help our future guidance.  He knows the difficulties and dangers that lie ahead of us. He knows the maze of life’s journey and the false routes Satan tries to take us on.  He also knows the human heart’s tendency to follow that which is evil.  The Spirit takes on the active guidance of the Christian into truth and duty!

Let the Scriptures Speak

Philippians 1:6: “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

Romans 8:26-27: “In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; 27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”

John 16:13: “ But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.”

  To be “led by the Spirit of God” is to be under His active guidance and control.  He speaks directly to our conscience, enlightens our understanding, regulates our desires, and orders our conduct.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Persuasive eschatology

If I had to recommend one book on Premillennialism, one on pretribulationalism, and one on dispensationalism, here is my list. Think of it as my fantasy eschatology team. The point of this list is that these books not only reflect what I believe, but advocate the view in a way I find convincing and compelling. In other words, if you are not premillennial, pretribulational, and dispensational, then read these books (unless you don’t want to be won over—in that case, go back to reading Calvin’s commentary on Revelation):

grudem st [2]Premillennialism: Systematic Theology [3]

Wayne Grudem defines premillennialism succinctly: “The premillennial position says that Christ will come back before the millennium…” Although Grudem goes on to separate the pre-tribulational rapture view from “historic premillennialism,” he makes a very strong argument for premillennialism. His presentation is so strong largely because of the amount of space he gives to amillennialism (in fact, he makes a stronger case for amillennialism than most books that end up advocating it!). After laying out the cases for both amillennialism and postmillennialism, he then explains why neither is ultimately compelling. What separates Grudem’s work from other similar books is that most other authors interact with amillennialism’s weak points. In other words, they find the weakest spot of the amillennial argument, and refute that. This is frustrating because that is exactly what amillennial authors often do to the premillennial view, and that approach is not winsome. Grudem avoids it, and instead interacts with the strong points of amillennialism, before ultimately explaining why he holds to premillennialism. The entire section is 30 pages, and ends with personal application questions as well as a hymn (Watts’ Jesus Shall Reign—take that amillennialists!)

3 views rapture [4]Pretribulationalism: Three Views on the Rapture [4]

Paul Feinberg effectively lays out the case for the pretribulational rapture. There are lots of rapture books that are condescending and use Left Behind rhetoric instead of actual exegesis. This book avoids all of that. In fact, this is probably the best of Zondervan’s Counterpoints series simply because all three views represented (pre, mid, post) are advocated by authors who know each other. They all taught at Trinity, they all believe in some form of immanency, and they all interact with each other in a truly edifying way. All three grant that their view has weaknesses, and that this is a grey area. Yet they all strongly advocate their view, and they interact with the other author’s strong points. Also, the introduction by Reiter is phenomenal. It is the best historical survey of rapture views that I have read, and explains how/why this form of eschatology arrives so late on the scene, comparatively speaking. This is a very, very good book.

vlach book [5]Dispensationalism: Dispensationalism [5]

Michael Vlach realized that most books on dispensationalism practically traffic in misinformation. Books by non-dispensationalists tend to be border-line dishonest in their portrayal of dispensational beliefs, and this has not been helped by the fact that many books by dispensationalists make almost no effort to convince the uninformed, but instead seem to be written under the assumption that no non-dispensationalist would ever read them to begin with. Vlach takes a different approach. He lays out what he sees as the six essential beliefs of dispensationalism, and shows how those beliefs are biblical. He devotes a section to responding to the misunderstandings of dispensational theology, as well as to the history of it. It is concise, and very helpful.
There are other books on these topics as well. Continuity and Discontinuity [6] is an exchange between the leading dispensationalist and covenantal theologians of the 1980’s, edited by John Feinberg. That was back when the two sides were actually talking to each other, and I doubt that a similar book could be written again anytime soon. This is not an entry level book, but as a follow up to any of the books above, it would be quite helpful. Also, MacArthur and Mayhue edited Christ’s Prophetic Plans [7], where several different authors argue for dispensationalism, pretribulationalism, and premillennialism. If you want to find one book that covers all three topics, then this is it.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Dave Hunt's Legacy

I have been greatly blessed from Dave Hunt's ministry over the years! I especially enjoyed reading his books entitled: " A Woman Rides the Beast, Judgment Day, Whatever happened to Heaven, and Creator, Cosmos, and Human Destiny." I never realized how many books he authored. If you are looking for some great discernment or apologetic's, I would recommend his books. You can also go to the Berean Call website for other great resources: