Saturday, January 31, 2009

Voddie Baucham: Why do bad things happen when God is in Control?

Friday, January 30, 2009

What was God doing a trillion years ago?


Above is a great example to illustrate the concept of time and eternity. Read the short article at Ray Comfort's blog, Atheist Central.

Monday, January 26, 2009

"The Pledge" (Oprah and the President)

Friends,
I received the following email today:


"The Pledge"

You may or may not like our new president, and you may or may not like
oprah but please take just a moment to watch this, because we are all in
this together. http://www.oprah.com/media/20090119_tows_ipledge
Check out the video and you will find it has celebrities encouraging us to make American pledges to:

· To look after each other
· To love more
· To help children battling serious illnesses
· To make this a better place for all of our children
· To be the voice for those that have no voice
· To be "green" so that we can be on this planet forever
· To sell a culture of intelligence instead of ignorance
· To help children understand that just because they come from a small place doesn't mean they can't still dream big.
· To defend issues that I care about.
· To be the change
· Understand that we are all in this together
· To be a servant to our President and all mankind.

My Questions

The Pledge states its mission is to love more and care for our children. Especially the least of these and the neediest, the most vulnerable. To be a voice for the voiceless.

· Does the least of these include protecting the life of the unborn in the womb?
· Is there a more vulnerable or needy life than that of the unborn?
· Who will speak for them?
· Will this President and this Pledge defend the lives of the unborn God has created in the womb?
· If not then is this really a Pledge on behalf of helping children and being a voice or the voiceless? What kind of pledge would leave them out but take time to specifically address fuel consumption, driving habits and plastic water bottles?

The Pledge boils down to a call to morality (goodness). A morality that is incomplete and without God. Morality without God is legalism. Legalism kills. Christ set us free in Him and Him alone. Unfortunately this Pledge is not that voice nor is this President. I am praying that will change.

Those who love God and people need to fight for the voiceless. Here is an objective fact. Barack Obama is America’s most aggressive pro-abortion President in history. Bare none. One day after the 36th Anniversary of the Supreme Court decision that has resulted in 50 million dead children, murdered in their mother’s wombs, Barack Obama signed an Executive Order forcing taxpayers to support this murder overseas as well. I cannot cheer and pledge to support a President who this week signed a law that will force all of us to fund child-murder with our taxes. It is because we are all in this together that we should together speak up against the murder of the innocent.

The Pledge boils down to a call to morality (goodness). A morality that is incomplete and without God. Morality without God is legalism. Legalism kills. Christ set us free in Him and Him alone. Unfortunately this Pledge is not that voice nor is this President. I am praying that will change.

Concerned Women for America earlier this month wrote:

"On Tuesday, January 20, Barack Obama will become our nation’s 44th President and it will be a whole new ballgame for us. During his campaign, Obama promised to sign the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) into law as one of his first Presidential accomplishments. FOCA creates a fundamental right to abortion by nullifying all state and federal laws that “interfere with” access to abortion before “viability” as determined by the abortion provider. It would overturn partial- birth abortion bans, eliminate parental notification, and force taxpayers to fund abortion.

While FOCA is dangerous, there are many pro-life policies can be demolished quickly and quietly without Congressional approval through Executive Orders. The one most likely to be a top priority for Obama is the Mexico City Policy.

The Mexico City Policy, which was implemented during the Reagan years, prohibits non-governmental organizations that receive USAID funding to provide or promote abortion as a method of family planning. Rescinding this policy will direct taxpayer monies specifically to groups that provide or promote abortions overseas."

What does the Bible say?

Jeremiah 1:5 tells us that God knows us before He knits us in the womb. Psalm 139:13-16 speaks of God’s active role in our creation and formation in the womb. Exodus 21:22-25 prescribes the same penalty for someone who causes the death of a baby in the womb as the penalty for someone who commits murder. Romans 13:8-10 adds that true love does “no harm” and does “not murder.”

Deuteronomy 30:19 says “This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.”

Psalm 82:3-4 says “Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked”.
Proverbs 31:8-9 says "Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy."
We must speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. We must speak for the rights of all who are destitute and defend the rights of the needy. Especially the least of these which the world has decided to give not the “least” bit of concern for. Who will speak for them?

In light of this President and this Pledge we should not only look at who the “least of these” includes but also what happens to those who do not truly care for them. Jesus said in Matthew 25:41,”Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” He also says in Matthew 25:46, “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.” Because He is loving He will not discard justice for those who have not truly loved all of the “least of these”. He describes it as separation, being cursed and punishment that is eternal fire. That’s serious to say the least.

Finally, the good news is that God’s mercy and grace are as serious as His justice. Please know that for those who have been involved in the tragedy of abortion that this and all your sins can be forgiven through repentance and faith in Christ alone (John 3:16-18; Romans 8:1; Colossians 1:14). Jesus is the only way for the unrighteous (Isaiah 64:6, Romans 3:10) to be made righteous (1 Corinthians 1:30, Romans 4:24, 1 Peter 3:18, 2 Peter 1:1, Hebrews 10:14).

Please prayerfully consider being a voice for unborn children in 2009 if you have not already. Because the unborn are in this together too and their voice is being murdered and marginalized. I also pray for all of us in love for God and for people that we would be obedient in sharing the words of life with a lost world starting with those you meet today.
Love,
Rob-roy

Friday, January 23, 2009

Enter to win this book!

You heard it right! This is our very first book giveaway here at Streetfishing.org and all you have to do is enter to have a chance to win. Mark Cahill's book One Thing You Can't Do In Heaven is among the best in motivating believers to action in sharing the gospel. See all of Mark's resources here.

I will make my random selection once I hit one hundred entries. All you have to do is email me at streetfishingrob@aol.com with "book giveaway" in the subject heading. If you are drawn, I will ask for a mailing address at that time. Open to U.S. residents only.
*Note: This giveaway made possible by a generous donor of several books, tracts and other resources. More free offers coming soon!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Holy Bowl--Worship at half-time.....Maybe

In the past few years the NFL has been in the news for cracking down hard and strong on churches across the country causing them to cancel big and small Super Bowl parties at their location. The NFL has relented from this aggressive approach recently but now a new development of sorts is emerging. This year it seems to be a bit backwards. The NFL is not cancelling Super Bowl parties at churches but instead a growing number of churches have decided to cancel Sunday evening Worship services to clear the way for members and staff to enjoy watching the Super Bowl.


New Spring Church in South Carolina created this video to announce to their congregation the Sunday evening Worship would not take place on Super Sunday. It makes the one person who shows up for church feel awkward and out of place.


The video actually has an evangelistic tone to it. Go spread the news… The news that there is No Evening Worship at Church on Super Sunday Feb 1. Other churches including Cornerstone in Chandler, AZ have also made the same decision. With more than a week till game time more may follow suit.

If only there was even half as much passion for living out and sharing the Gospel as there is for the Super Bowl, the commercials and the parties. I understand that at Super Bowl parties a lot of people enjoy the fellowship of other fans. I know it is not a sin to watch and enjoy a football game. I have no intention to be legalistic about the Super Bowl for it is God who knows the heart. Since He knows the heart it should be important to honestly consider “why” these things are so and seek after God’s heart in the matter.

I wonder what is at the heart of all this? Is God really at the heart of these kinds of decisions? I would like to think so. All the same I wonder why it is though that fans (which is short for fanatics) are not even more fanatical about the God who made them and laid down His life to save all who will come to Him in repentance and faith? I wonder how it is that for 51 weeks of the year a church can have corporate Sunday Evening Worship but on Super Bowl night close the doors?

Could it really be that the motive behind cancelling a regular and weekly time of worship is being done in order to give all glory to God? That somehow God will be esteemed even more by cancelling corporate worship in order to not miss kick-off? Is God that small and the game so big? Is it the Cross that you get Carried Away with or is it the game? Is it deny yourself and take up your cross or is it deny your cross and take up your remote?

Football is fine until it becomes an idol. How do you know if it is an idol? Ask God to search your heart and reveal the truth remembering that for the redeemed every day is Super. Not just Sunday. Not even “that” Sunday. So the question ultimately is not “where will you be” that night but “where will your heart be.” May He receive all glory forever. And of course He will.
Love,
Rob-roy

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ready answer?

Many times when streetfishing, I run into professing Christians. When I go to hand them the tract they'll say, "Oh, I'm already a Christian." "Great!" I reply. "If someone were to come up to you and ask you what it means to be born again, what would you tell them?" That's were it gets a little complicated.

Originally, I asked this question to probe deeper into their profession of faith as there are more and more false gospels being taught. I quickly found out that believers stumble over this question regularly. For a quick example of this, click here to listen to a recent conversation I had with a Christian bookstore clerk.

Before putting all of my friends and family to the test, I decided to write this article as an encouragement. The purpose of this "experiment" is not to make people doubt their salvation although it might be evidence of just that for some. I realize that catching someone off gaurd and asking them a question like this really puts them on the spot. Especially if I have a microphone stuck in the their face.

My hope is that it serves as a refresher. In a world where the gospel is becoming increasingly watered down, we need to have a solid understanding of what the truth is. What it boils down to is four basic questions:

Who is God?

God is righteous, soveriegn, perfect and holy in everything that he does. He is the center of everything and the creator of everything and the very definition of goodness and perfection.

Who are we?

Man was created in God's image and for His glory. Because of the fall of man in the Garden of Eden and the resulting curse, We have a sinful nature. We have offended God by breaking His laws in many ways in thought and deed.

What are the consequences?

Because God is righteous and holy, His standard is absolute perfection. God is also eternal, and even the "smallest" of sins are of eternal significance to Him and eternally punishable. That is why Hell is a reasonable and just punishment for mankind. Because sin is such an offense to God, no amount of good works can undo my sinfulness.

What is the answer for man?

Because God is so good, and knew that I would sin, for His glory, He provided a plan that was merciful and kind. This was the salvation He made possible by coming to the earth Himself; Jesus Christ, born of a virgin, living a perfect, sinless life so that He could be made the perfect sacrifice for my sins once and for all. Only God Himself could pay such a debt. By doing this, God has accounted or imputed to us His righteousness so that we can stand before Him and go to Heaven. It is the free unmerited gift of God; His grace.We receive this gift through repentance and faith. By repenting, or turning from our sin and placing our trust in the Savior, we are forgiven not because we are now good, but because we are bad people who have been forgiven by God.






Parts of this article were adapted from an explanation Todd Friel gave on Way Of The Master Radio

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Everyday Club

Steve Sanchez of Stone The Preacher has a great idea. It's called "The Everyday Club." You can check out his web site for the original post, but the main idea is to challenge ourselves to either hand out ten tracts a day every day, or have one personal evangelism encounter. In addition to this, we can open air preach whenever the opportunity presents itself. His idea is to provide regular stats for accountability and encouragement. Great idea Steve, way to go!


Above: Steve doing what he does.




Tony Miano had a great insight to add to this challenge. Read about it here.

I got a chance to see them both again at the Way of the Master's Transformed conference this weekend in Beaumont, CA. I love these guys and the fellowship, counsel and accountability I share with them on an ongoing basis. Please take time to visit their web sites regularly. Different styles, different messages, one purpose; To bring the maximum glory to God.


Above right: Tony doing what he does.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Harmony at any cost?

Friends,

Was thinking about Jesus warning the Church in Thyatira about tolerating what they should not tolerate (Revelation 2:18-29). Tolerance and harmony are buzz words today that sound good and often are good. Terms like conflict and confrontation are frowned upon. When those hit the scene they are like villains and the super heroes of tolerance and harmony are sure to arrive to save the day! Not so fast.

Two of today's biggest false idols are tolerance and harmony in the name of throwing "truth" to the wind. Tolerance and harmony are not always good. Conflict and confrontation is not always bad. The key to navigating these waters is the pursuit of "truth" and "love".

Adrian Rogers put it this way:

      It is better to be divided by truth than united in error;
      it is better to speak truth that hurts and then heals than to speak a lie;
      it is better to be hated for telling the truth than to be loved for telling a lie;
      it is better to stand alone with truth than to be wrong with the multitude.
      The religion of today is 'get-alongism'.
      It is time for men and women of God to stand, even if they have to stand alone.

John MacArthur adds this insight:

      “I think that it is so important to know this. In a time like this of tolerance, listen, false teaching will always cry intolerance. It will always say you are being divisive, you are being unloving, you are being ungracious, because it can only survive when it doesn’t get scrutinized. So it cries against any intolerance. It cries against any examination, any scrutiny—just let’s embrace each other; let’s love each other; let’s put all that behind us.

      False doctrine cries the loudest about unity. Listen carefully when you hear the cry for unity, because it may be the cover of false doctrine encroaching. If ever we should follow 1 Thessalonians 5, and examine everything carefully, it’s when somebody is crying unity, love, and acceptance.”

Phil Johnson contributes this perspective:

      “… in a postmodern world where doubt has been canonized as a virtue, any sort of strong conviction is going to be dismissed as "arrogant."

Since truth by its nature divides, conflict and confrontation can be one of the results. That does not mean we should create unwarranted conflict. To the contrary. The Apostle Paul wrote: Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Romans 12:17-18.

We should desire to live in peace. We should also not be surprised that when we hold to "truth" (even in "love") there will be conflict because we are imperfect people in what is an imperfect world. Truth is not popular. A.W. Tozer made the point that there is one place in our society where there is no conflict, no confrontation, no friction and instead tolerance and harmony. The place? The cemetery!

Harmony at any cost? If the cost is truth then the price is too high. And to abandon truth would certainly not be loving. Here is more from A.W...

In Jesus name,

Rob-roy

-----------------------------------------------------

The Church: Harmony at Any Cost

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. --1 Peter 5:8

Some misguided Christian leaders feel that they must preserve harmony at any cost, so they do everything possible to reduce friction. They should remember that there is no friction in a machine that has been shut down for the night. Turn off the power, and you will have no problem with moving parts. Also remember that there is a human society where there are no problems--the cemetery. The dead have no differences of opinion. They generate no heat, because they have no energy and no motion. But their penalty is sterility and complete lack of achievement.

What then is the conclusion of the matter? That problems are the price of progress, that friction is the concomitant of motion, that a live and expanding church will have a certain quota of difficulties as a result of its life and activity. A Spirit-filled church will invite the anger of the enemy.

A.W. Tozer

This World: Playground or Battleground?, p112-113.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jesus Never Claimed To Be God!

Have you ever been witnessing and someone makes the statement, “Jesus never claimed to be God.” They say that Jesus’ divinity is only a myth. The usual argument Christians make is that Jesus was either a liar or lunatic or He, in fact, was God. These three hypotheses are based on the assumption that Jesus really did claim to be God; however, suppose He did not make such a claim. Suppose this claim is a myth and it was the New Testament writers that claimed Jesus’ divinity.


The myth idea has really taken hold in the twentieth century and become a widespread intellectual reason for many to reject Christianity or even “Christians” to abandon their faith. We should be prepared to deflate this line of reasoning.

Why can’t the myth idea be true? If Christ is not a liar or lunatic, why can’t His claim of divinity be a myth? Buddha is thought to be a god but this myth was conceived many years after the historical Buddha who claimed only to be an enlightened man. The myth idea is not a simple or reasonable explanation for the data about Jesus.

No book in history has been so attacked, cut up, reconstituted and stood on its head as the New Testament. Yet it still lives. If the same neutral, objective, scientific approach is used on the New Testament as other ancient texts, then the texts prove remarkably reliable.


  1. The state of the manuscripts is very good. We have ten times more manuscripts of the New Testament than the next most reliable ancient text, Iliad. We only have 50 copies of Iliad that date approximately 500 years after the original.


  2. If Jesus’ divinity was a myth invented by later Christian generations, then there must have been two or three generations between the original eyewitnesses of Jesus and the widespread belief in the new divinized Jesus. But we find no evidence at all of anyone opposing the so-called myth of Jesus’ divinity. In fact, no competent scholar denies the first-century dating of the New Testament well within one generation of the historical Jesus.


  3. If the “myth” idea of Jesus’ divinity was added later to an original human Jesus claim, then we should find some evidence of this early-humanized claim like we have for Buddha. But there is no external or internal evidence in Christian, anti-Christian, or non-Christian sources.


  4. The style of the Gospels is not the style of a myth; they are full of little details that are found only in eyewitness descriptions.


  5. It also makes sense that Jesus was tried and crucified for His claim to be God considering the Jews sensitivity to blasphemy. We see no evidence of any political ambitions on Jesus’ part to warrant capital punishment.


  6. Four Gospels were written by four different authors at four different times and likely for four different audiences and purposes. This allows us to crosscheck the facts and details with greater assurance than other ancient series of events.


  7. Who would invent the myth about a divine Jesus? Who would invent a practical joke in order to be persecuted, crucified, stoned or beheaded?


  8. Finally, myths were not something the first-century Jews or Christians were likely to believe. Unlike the pagans of their day, the Jews denied mythology in most areas of life.


And so, my fellow Christian (or searching agnostic), be encouraged! We have valid reasons to believe the claims of Jesus as historical facts. Now, go boldly proclaim the Gospel.








(Resource reference: Handbook of Christian Apologetics by Kreeft/Tacelli)




Friday, January 9, 2009

The Hitler analogy

I haven't heard this analogy used quite like this. It's really brings an interesting perspective to self righteousness.





Thursday, January 8, 2009

Untitled


This is a little something that my 14 year old daughter wrote. The assignment at her school was to get a flavor for some of the writing of the psalms and put together a poem or hymn that would capture the same type of poetic feel. Way to go kiddo!




Lord, you bless the lives of the righteous

You curse the days of the wicked

Your voice is heard across nations

And Your words are upon the hearts of man

Your judgement is holy

Your penalty is righteous

There is no man who can escape You

There is no place to avoid Your sight

Lord your love is enduring

But Your wrath is immediate.


--Zoe

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Crash Course

StreetFishing is putting on it's very first Evangelism Crash Course. We are being hosted by my home church, Calvary Chapel Queen Creek. See the graphic below for sign-up information. Please note that you must R.S.V.P by January 22nd 2008.


Robert, Dave, Otter and the gang will be there to share principles from Way of the Master and our own evangelism experiences. Afterwards we will be enjoying a meal and time of street evangelism.


If you are traveling from outside of the area, please contact us and we will do our best to accomidate your needs.






Monday, January 5, 2009

Clear as Mud...Again


This is a re-post from way back. Just thought I'd try my hand at a blog rerun! Actually, I wasn't getting much traffic when I originally posted this although it got some air time on Way of The Master radio. There will be one or two more "reruns" coming soon. Enjoy.

While listening to a popular Christian radio station, I heard a promotion for a number to call if you needed to learn more about a "relationship with Jesus Christ." Since this is exactly what StreetFishing is about, I was interested in how they would present me with the gospel. I wasn't prepared for what I was about to hear though. As a believer, this phone call left me perplexed. It didn't even closely resemble any gospel presentation I've ever heard. I wonder what the unbleliever has experienced.
The goal of this ministry is to encourage and equip others to go and share the gospel plainly and biblically. Much of what we hear today is a product of modern methods that are targeted at a specific audience and that are seeker sensitive rather than biblically sound. The peson on this call however didn't even use anything remotely seeker sensitive. He didn't make sense at all in my opinion. Let me know what you think. Listen here as Robert calls this national phone-in line.