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Monday, April 29, 2019

Marriage, Morality, & Singleness for the Christian

God created the first marriage (Adam & Eve).

God defines marriage (Genesis 2:23-24; Matthew 19:4-6; Mark 10:6-7).

Marriage reflects Christ's relationship and union with believers / the church (1 Corinthians 6:15-17 & Ephesians 5:22-32).

Adultery is to be taken seriously (Deuteronomy 22:22)

Believers are to abstain from and flee from immorality 
(1 Thessalonians 4:3-8; 1 Corinthians 6:18-19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5; Genesis 39:12).

The desire for an immoral relationship is covetous and idolatrous (Exodus 20:17; Matthew 5:28; Job 31:1; Genesis 19:5-7; Colossians 3:5).

Renewing the mind is what Christians should be doing which means we should be careful about what enters our minds (Romans 12:2; Psalm 119:11; Proverbs 4:23).

Immorality is fleshly and to be repented of  (Galatians 5:19; 2 Corinthians 12:21).

Putting to death the deeds of the flesh is part of living by the Spirit (Romans 8:13). 

A married man & woman shouldn't deprive the other of intimacy (1 Corinthians 7:1-6).

Christians are not to have lust or intimacy with the same gender regardless of the world's equating it with marriage.  It is not marriage as defined by God, but it is actually a judgment & a sin to be repented of and fled from (Romans 1:25-27; Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13; 1 Timothy 1:9-11; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

Incest & Bestiality are also outside of  God's design, and are condemned in Scripture (Deuteronomy 27:21-22; Exodus 22:19; Leviticus 2:15; Leviticus 18:23).

Singleness is nothing to be ashamed of, but if a desire for intimacy is there, then it is not wrong for a never married person or widowed individual to marry (1 Corinthians 7).
This does NOT allow for lust for intimacy not defined in Scripture as marriage (same-sex desires & lust should be repented of and fled from - not contemplated and accepted as okay).

So, I see from Scripture that marriage was meant to be between one man and one woman, that marriage reflects the union of Christ with believers (in a spiritual sense), that immorality is to be fled from and repented of, that married couples should be intimate with each other (exclusively), that homosexuality (and the desire for it) is sinful (not to be practiced by believers), and that all other forms of physically intimate relationships are not a part of God's plan for believers.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Cessationism, the NAR, Bethel Church, & IHOP

John MacArthur has been blogging on the Master's University site lately, and the recent article on cessationism gives a history of how the charismatics / Pentecostals have redefined the gifts to support their position.
Strange Fire Redux - Part 2 by John MacArthur 

New Apostolic Reformation Adherents Reject the Sufficiency of Scripture
47 minutes into a program I watched recently, the topic of the NAR (which includes Bethel Church in Redding, CA and IHOP) came up. 
The topic concludes around 1 hour and 19 minutes in.
It explains how the NAR has a form of ecumenism and a wrong view of Jesus which leads to accepting other things that don't line up with Scripture.
Watch out for those who hold experience over Scriptural truth.
The NAR & Bethel Church (Podcast Version)

The IHOP You Should Avoid

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Thoughts on Reading

In doing a book cover challenge on social media (sharing covers of books a person loves), I've looked at our library 2 or 3 times and brought more piles of books from it to be read again in the future.
That's the hazard of trying to choose books to share!
I haven't even finished my previous stack!
There are a lot of books I have read over and over during my lifetime, and then there are some I've read only once (or am still in the middle of reading or have quit reading in some cases).

I grew up reading fiction mostly for my entertainment, but I've increased my nonfiction repertoire in recent times (which usually takes me more thinking and time) .
Some of that reading was so I could share books with others (it's good that way too), but some I've actually (gasp!) chosen to read for my own edification.

Reading the Bible is something every Christian should be doing unless they want to starve spiritually.
Other books don't have that kind of value.
Reading other books doesn't make a person a spiritual or literary giant, although some kinds of reading can be of some benefit.
Some of my online friends read things that make my reading selections look pathetic, but that's okay.
Reading shouldn't be a matter of pride.
I did consider in the challenge whether the books might either be helpful or at least worth recommending without clarifications.
Sadly, even most "Christian" fiction books are not great in their Theology - even if they are entertaining.

I'm going to share a couple of other books I took pictures of ... one nonfiction that I'm pretty sure I read once many years ago when I was young (more unusual) and a fiction book that I only read once a few years ago.
It was a less stressful type...more of a human interest type.  


Friday, April 12, 2019

God Is Our Refuge

Christian, are you in need of encouragement?
Here is a message that reminds us to look to God alone.
Finding Stability in an Unstable World • Message given by Darren Wiebe

This is a stressful time for me, and reminders of God's dependability and calming music with good lyrics are helpful.
Here are two songs I've heard in recent times that came into my mind this week.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Unplanned (the Movie) & How to Avoid Some Bad Films

You often don't have to watch a movie to know there's a problem.
You just have to know how to do some online research or have discerning friends.
For example, the movie Unplanned just came out.
The R rating is a no-no automatically for me (they give that rating for a reason), but even if it weren't for that there are other red flags.

I know of some review sites that may not have the greatest of discernment in everything, but a person can  look to see if they list bad language in a movie (there are probably 7 or more bad words in Unplanned listed on one of the sites - these sites often can miss something).
You can also check to see whether there is immorality or immodesty in a given movie that they caught (which usually means the immodesty can be really bad when they notice it -  since they don't have the same standards I do), etc.

Here are some sites that aren't that spiritually discerning - just a little helpful when looking for the types of things I mentioned:

For the movie Unplanned, it was brought to my attention that Kris Vallotton of Bethel Church, Redding, CA is in it.  
That is a HUGE double triple no-no.  
Bethel Church is a cult that brings people from all over the world in to be deceived.  
The movie is about a Catholic.  Roman Catholics also have another gospel, so that's an interesting alliance...and means that there would not be any real Gospel in the movie.

Plus, I saw a couple of other reviews.
I wouldn't have bothered to watch the movie if I were these guys (but I'm not), and I would recommend avoiding that particular movie to everyone else.