What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says - Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says - Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
A WakeUp Call Essay for week #25 06/22/2014
What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
Lester L. Roloff was born on June 28, 1914 in Dawson, Texas. He grew up there on a cotton farm. At the age of 12, he was saved, and at the age of 18, he surrendered to the Lord's call to preach. He graduated from Baylor University and attended Southwestern Seminary for nearly three years. During this time, he pastured two part-time churches. He then pastured four full-time churches before the Lord called him, in 1951, to be a full-time evangelist.
Lester L. Roloff was born on June 28, 1914 in Dawson, Texas. He grew up there on a cotton farm. At the age of 12, he was saved, and at the age of 18, he surrendered to the Lord's call to preach. He graduated from Baylor University and attended Southwestern Seminary for nearly three years. During this time, he pastored two part-time churches. He then pastored four full-time churches before the Lord called him, in 1951, to be a full-time evangelist.
Lester L. Roloff was born on June 28, 1914 in Dawson, Texas. He grew up there on a cotton farm. At the age of 12, he was saved, and at the age of 18, he surrendered to the Lord's call to preach. He graduated from Baylor University and attended
3 Harmful Aspects of Public Schools The education of our children is a grave responsibility for every parent. For years, Anna and I have counseled Christian parents to either homeschool their children or to have them in a quality Christian school. I tell people that one of the primary reasons our children are serving the Lord today is because we kept them out of public school and gave them a Christian education.Our primary focus has been on protecting children from the many negative influences found in the public school system. Though there are many dedicated public school teachers who truly care about their students, the public school can be very damaging to the Christian student. Let me repeat, I do believe there are dedicated Christian schoolteachers in public schools; and I believe that the public school is a great mission field for these dedicated servants.However, the public school can be very hurtful to Christian young people for the following reasons:1. The Secular World ViewIn 1962, by Supreme Court decision, prayer was outlawed in our public schools. In 1963, the Supreme Court followed up by saying that Bible reading would be outlawed in our public schools. From that time, the quality of our education has decreased.Â The Bible says that the beginning of wisdom is the fear of God. With the exclusion of God, our educational system could not do anything but decline. The humanistic philosophy of our present society has great influence in our public schools and will have a harmful negative effect on our Christian students.2. Teachers Who Are Anti-GodAs I said, many good, solid, Bible-believing Christian teachers are in our public schools. However, the vast majority of teachers in public schools are not Christians.Â Psalm 1 says, â€śBlessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.â€ťGod tells us that, as adults, we should not sit in the counsel of the ungodly. If God doesn't want us to sit there, then why would we send our children to be taught by men and women who deny the Lord Jesus Christ? It certainly isn't the wisest thing we could do.3. Negative Peer PressureBy far, the most negative thing about the public school system is the negative peer pressure that Christian children receive. There is a constant pressure to conform to the new fads of this world.I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mindâ€¦.â€”Romans 12:1â€“2Young people are continually pressured to be conformed to this world in their dress, in their music, in their lifestyle, and in their morality. When a child spends thirty to forty hours a week in school with friends who see nothing wrong with vulgar, inappropriate music, movies, language, and lifestyle, they will be pressured to conform to that immoral behavior.However, having said all that, I want to share with you an article that I recently read put out by the Council for American Private Education. In this article, a study is quoted that was published in issue three of volume eighty-seven of The Peabody Journal of Education. The study was done, not by a Christian organization, but by a senior fellow of the Witherspoon Institution in Princeton, New Jersey, and a professor at California State University, Long Beach. I think you will appreciate a portion of this article.Students in religious schools enjoy a significant academic advantage over their counterparts in traditional public schools and charter schools, according to the findings from a meta-analysis of 90 studies on the effects of schools conducted by William Jeynes, senior fellow at the Witherspoon Institute in Priceton, New Jersey, and a professor at California State University, Long Beach. The study was published in issue 3 of volume 87 of the Peabody Journal of Education.Â â€śThe results indicate that attending private religious schools is associated with the highest level of academic achievement among the three school types, even when sophisticated controls are used to adjust for socioeconomic status,â€ť according to the report.â€śI was quite surprised that students from charter schools did no better than their counterparts in traditional public schools,â€ť wrote Jeynes in an email message to CAPE. At the start of the study, he was expecting to see higher levels of performance from charters.Â â€śTo the extent that neither traditional public schools nor charter schools are succeeding on a broad scale, it appears that the best hope for American education is religious private schools,â€ť said Jeynes. â€śNot only are they considerably more economically efficient, but their students obtain better results.â€ť He said the nation should â€śrethink its strategy of espousing charter schools and overlooking the benefits of faith-based education.â€ť1Â Christian education is the choice of even secular educators today. I would encourage you to consider that as you prepare to enroll your child for the next school year.1Council for American Private Education (2013). Study Finds Advantages for Students in Faith-Based Schools. CAPE Outlook, 1.
by Hohn Chos someone who is not on Twitter but keeps abreast of it, let me point out that it has been a pretty crazy week for the Christian social justicians. For this blogpost, we'll be discussing a particular tirade by one Bradly Mason. Now, as someone who does his best to avoid responding to mere "someone is WRONG on the Internet" situations, since Mason appears to have relatively limited influenceâ€”just like me, I'd add, before anyone falsely accuses me of looking down on himâ€”normally I'd be inclined to just let it pass. But given that portions of and references to his tweetstorm have been enthusiastically liked or retweeted with approval by many more prominent figures, including Thabiti Anyabwile, Anthony Bradley, Jemar Tisby, and Ekemini Uwan, and as of this writing has almost 200 retweets and over 1,300 likes, I think it's fair to say that he has struck a nerve.That fact alone exposes the Proverbs 29:11 emotionalism and James 1:20 unrighteous anger which all too often drive so many of the social justicians' arguments, sadly. Certainly they don't appear to be driven by biblical or logical considerations, given that Mason cites zero Scripture despite 23 tweets, and quickly retreats from a slanderous bailey (naming many honorable men and groups[*] in response to the specific question, "Who is defending white supremacy using the Gospel?") to a still-indefensible motte (merely relegating those men and groups to a place of "making conservative evangelicalism a pretty safe place to harbor [white supremacist] views" and claiming they "defend White Supremacy") within the very same tweetstorm, incredibly. And during the course of his unsupported and unsupportable accusations (because none of the people or groups he names are "defending white supremacy" as they, in fact, overtly oppose white supremacy, and have said as much, and thus the claim is false), he also manages to airily dismiss many legitimate concerns raised by faithful saints, and set up and knock down over a dozen straw men, all while engaging in some of the most egregiously uncharitable heart-reading that I've seen in a long time.Rather than get into a point-by-point rebuttal, I'm opting to highlight two overarching themes that I see in many social justicians' arguments. First, their claims and calls to action are often legalistic in nature, specifically the type of pharisaic legalism that elevates the heavy burden of man-made rules and lays them on people's shoulders per Matthew 23:4.I find this to be an ironic phenomenon, given that social justicians often accuse their critics of being fundamentalists characterized by legalism, among other things, but the reality is that far too often, they themselves are the ones attempting to bootstrap generalized scriptural principles which do not speak to the time, place, or manner of how they ought to be applied, into extremely specific extra-biblical requirements. One example would be Anyabwile writing in the Washington Post last year about evangelicals' supposed "complicit silence" regarding President Trump (whom I did not support in 2016, by the way, but he is in fact the President, and thus for American Christians, Titus 3:1-2 applies), a terribly-reasoned piece which I previously critiqued here.In that light, let's consider Mason's "motte" argument, specifically that the brothers and groups he accused are "making conservative evangelicalism a pretty safe place to harbor [white supremacist] views" and elsewhere that they "defend White Supremacy". This is a serious charge, and as is often the case with "social justice" rhetoric, its main support appears to be the author's opinion, specifically that the accused here too often dare to express concerns about the faulty or at times even non-existent Scriptural rationales of the social justicians, as well as the naturally dangerous fruit likely to result from such unbiblical trees.In other words, if one disagrees with certain social justicians, or even declines to speak out on the specific topics they want with the specific frequency and strength they want, one is coddling white supremacists and defending white supremacy. Somehow. I guess. Even if some of the accused are not even white. Even if most (all?) of the accused have overtly preached and written against the evils of the sin of partiality pertaining to ethnicity and otherwise, and are supportive of things like interethnic marriage to such an extent that they are abhorred by the execrable kinists.Look, that isn't "defending white supremacy" by any rational standard. The reality is that the accused attack white supremacy and are flatly opposed to it. Their "crime" is simply that they don't make opposing it the absolute center of their ministry, and are unwilling to just shut up and let the social justicians say whatever they want, unchallenged, as they unbiblically bind others' consciences with legalistic appeals, or even worse, confuse the Gospel with a Galatian addition of "wokeness" as a fundamentally required work. And in the exact same way, I believe all of the accused are pro-life and anti-abortion, but vehemently oppose anti-abortion extremists such as Abolish Human Abortion when they go overboard with their legalistic appeals and anti-biblical ecclesiology. Indeed, there are many similarities between the AHA zealots and the social justicians, and the comparison does not reflect well on either group.Mason's argument is completely irrational and illogical, and again, it's absolutely legalistic. Because each of the accused, in his own stewardship, is ultimately accountable to the Lordâ€”as well as his elders or fellow eldersâ€”for how he chooses to prioritize his public and private words and actions, and if Mason's (or Anyabwile's, or Bradley's, or Tisby's, or Uwan's, who all supported and aligned with Mason in some fashion) measuring stick for "woke" holiness is counting public comments opposed to or supportive of the social justicians' poor theology, well, they might as well break out their hemline-rulers and book bonfires.At the end of the day, I'm aware of no biblical command to preach or speak out publicly (or tweet, for that matter) on any specific topic with any specific frequency, with the exception of course being the Gospel per 2 Timothy 4:2, 1 Corinthians 9:16, Acts 10:42, Matthew 28:19-20, Romans 1:16, as the accused have so often pointed out and emphasized in their ministries. This is true even for whatever major current event might be happening in any given week. Whether and to what extent a pastor decides to talk about 9/11, or an abortion bill, or a tragic mass shooting, or whoever the perpetrator of that mass shooting might be, is a matter for that pastor's own stewardship, and he will have a greater accountability for it per James 3:1. But when another person makes sweeping and censorious accusations about an entire swath of faithful men and ministries based sheerly on that person's perception of that stewardship and prioritization, well, James 2:13 gives me genuine concern for that person.Meanwhile, for all of us as we decide if and when and how to speak, genuine care should be taken to avoid the real danger of virtue signaling to an outside secular world that is increasingly hostile to Christians...except of course those Christians eager to promote the latest worldly styles and fads, especially if they're willing to bash other groups of faithful Christians as they do. As Matthew 6:5 states, those virtue signalers already have their treasure, in the form of book deals, conference speaker gigs, Washington Post articles, and perhaps most commonly, the praise, admiration, and Twitter likes and retweets of countless social justicians, liberals, academics, celebrities, media figures, and cool hipsters whose only reactions to biblically faithful positions such as young earth creationism, traditional marriage, penal substitutionary atonement, and the exclusivity of Jesus Christ are the ridicule and revulsion reserved for uncouth, unwashed, unenlightened fundamentalists guilty of unspeakable thought crimes unfit for public discourse.Before you call me an alarmist, this is already happening to Christian business owners, professors, and students. And it will continue happening, and will only get worse. And although it's unsurprising to see the faithful remnant besieged by torch- and pitchfork-carrying secularists, the saddest part to me is wondering who among my currently faithful professing brethren will end up offering them aid and comfort, or even joining their ranks.This brings me to my second overarching theme, which is the pragmatic nature of so much of the social justician discourse. Again and again, I see concerns raised by people like Mason about the pragmatic ends of this or that action, rather than the biblical means on how to get to a particular end. I perceive over and over such a great concern for the temporal, that the spiritual is often neglected or treated as an afterthought. But as we know from 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, we do not wage war according to the flesh, and in fact there is great importance in casting down arguments and opinions that are raised against the knowledge of God. This passage would seem to emphasize the importance of making sure that our means are indeed in accordance with what God has revealed in His Word, before rushing off to try to achieve some end. I would think one way to do this would be having a civil discourse.Instead, sadly, we have pieces like Mason's, and a general lack of interest in having a substantive discussion. Everyone I know on "my side" of the argument, including the accused, is eager to have a discussion about what the Bible says on this or that "social justice" topic, but the usual response I've seen from social justicians is crickets. And while I fully acknowledge the possibility of confirmation bias, based on my own personal experience in the church on this "social justice" issue, I believe I'm north of a dozen times recently when my attempts to engage in (highly civil) discussions have been met with silence, unfulfilled promises to respond later, in two cases a decisively dismissive attitude, and in only one case an actual conversation over lunch that turned out to be both profitable and enjoyable. And I've observed from afar a similar ratio in the tireless efforts of Neil Shenvi.[**]When I compare this track record to some higher-profile spats in the secular world, rife with declarations that look like, "go educate yourself, I'm not going to do your homework for you" (a seemingly curious response, if one is truly interested in advancing one's preferred position within the marketplace of ideas), or "I'm sick and tired of repeating myself all the time" (a more understandable sentiment in the secular world, perhaps, but less so for Christians called not to weary of doing good in Galatians 6:9), I'm grieved by the similarity of the responses.More and more, my impression is that many Christian social justicians are simply not interested in having a discussion (much less a debate) with the brothers and sisters who respectfully disagree with them. Instead, it seems as though the desire is simply to proselytize to build their coalition and then declare victory, with any opposition either ignored, or smashed down with a sledgehammer of presumptuously misappropriated moral authority. And when this happens, honest disagreement is often recast as hatred or slander, sadly, and people who earnestly hold differing biblical convictions are dismissed, or even worse, cast out, as adherents of a truncated or incomplete Gospel...or even as defenders of white supremacy. Because apparently, it is not good enough for many social justicians to simply separate and do ministry in different ways, as Paul and Barnabas did, but precisely because the social justicians are seeking pragmatic or even political goals, the movement must grow. And suddenly, personal convictions become "Gospel issues" and individual Christian liberty is turned into the legalistic requirements I described in my first theme, above.Instead of such political pragmatism, what the church truly needs is more godly, Gospel-proclaiming Christians concerned for the individual souls of the lost, and not more armchair politicians. And this is true regardless of whether their arms might sit on the right or left armrest. Indeed, some of the social justicians go on and on (and on and on) wondering how any professing Christian could ever support certain policies supported by the Republican Party or even worse, President Trump, displaying an astonishing lack of self-awareness as they do so. Because the reality is that they're doing the exact same thing as the people they decry, merely from the opposing political viewpoint.I'll leave it to each individual Christian to decide whether or not one party or the other is more supportive of his or her most important biblical principles and convictions. Speaking only for myself, however, I can't bring myself to vote for any party that would continue to maintain the horror of abortion as a fundamental right. This is my own personal bright line litmus test, my speaking up for the most voiceless and oppressed of all, as nearly a million babies a year are still being murdered in the US alone. It is every bit as shocking and immoral, if not more so, than the evils of hereditary slavery based on the color of one's skin with origins in man-stealing. Thankfully, that evil was abolished over 150 years ago...and yet our modern tragedy of abortion continues. The social justicians often speak about the importance of moral clarity on certain societal issues. I agree, and that's precisely why I personally believe all other societal issuesâ€”even some good ones, some important onesâ€”pale in comparison to the very lives of countless unborn children.Once again, however, the differences in temporal priorities that individual Christians might have are precisely why I and so many other like-minded brothers (like the accused) and sisters emphasize the importance of Gospel proclamation, over any other social or political matter. Because the eternal state of each individual unsaved man or woman is something we all ought to be able to unite on, and of far greater importance than any temporal issue, however dire. I'm glad to be confident in that stance from so many of the accused. Indeed, I know the majority of these men and leaders in three of the groups personally, and they abhor and clearly teach against the sin of partiality both generally as well as specifically pertaining to ethnicity. So just as Mason's "motte" charge is completely baseless legalism, his "bailey" charge is simply outrageous calumny. And he and the people cheering him on ought to repent of it and retract it.* Mason specifically accuses the brethren Justin Peters, John MacArthur, James White, Phil Johnson, Doug Wilson, JD Hall, Josh Buice, Tom Ascol, R. Scott Clark, Darrell Harrison, Burk Parsons, and in a follow-up tweet Samuel Sey and Voddie Baucham, as well as the groups Sovereign Nations, Alpha & Omega Ministries, Grace To You, Pulpit & Pen, Reformation Charlotte, Aquila Report, American Vision, and Ligonier Ministries.** If you're not familiar with Neil, you really ought to consider checking him out, and his research partner Pat Sawyer as well. Neil's website is chock-full of excellent, biblical takes on a wide variety of topics (including perhaps most notably, these days, critical theory), and his Twitter feed is the type of graciously edifying, Christ-honoring engagement that I would aspire to, were I ever to take the plunge onto that medium.
God is not a patriotic American.Ă‚Â Before you try to crucify me for making a statement like that, let me explain what I mean.Ă‚Â God has no preferential treatment among nations.Ă‚Â He would be just as pleased to bless Pakistan, South Africa, Ukraine, or America.Ă‚Â It is all the same to Him.Ă‚Â In fact, I believe that Scripture teaches clearly that God would be very happy to bless every nation on earth.Ă‚Â Yet if this is true then why is it that God has blessed America so abundantly as compared to every other nation on earth.Ă‚Â The current international climate seems to indicate that God does favor America...that perhaps God is an American patriot.Ă‚Â Scripture defines two standards by which God judges nations.Ă‚Â Those nations that practice these two principles, he blesses.Ă‚Â Those who ignore these two end up living in the dark ages for thousands of years.Ă‚Â God has blessed America so greatly not because we are the bastion of liberty or because of our national pride, or because he is an American patriot.Ă‚Â He has blessed America only because we have historically followed these two principles.Ă‚Â So what are the principles that either drive nations to great blessing or to their knees?Ă‚Â "Righteousness exalteth a nation..."Ă‚Â ~ Proverbs 14:34 The first principles is our nation's relationship to righteousness.Ă‚Â God has blessed America because our nation has spent great effort promoting righteousness.Ă‚Â Historically many of our nation's laws were grounded in the Word of God.Ă‚Â Historically speaking our nation has been a religious people that promoted doing right.Ă‚Â Now our nation is quickly sliding down the road of embracing immorality and pure ungodliness as right.Ă‚Â On April 27, it became legal to marry men with men and women with women in the state of Iowa.Ă‚Â This only follows the trend of a few other states and helps to pave the way for others to come.Ă‚Â Even our president touts to the world that we are not a Christian nation.Ă‚Â And although you might debate about the idea that we may have once been a Christian nation, I believe that I must agree with our far left liberal president on this issue.Ă‚Â Today we are not a Christian nation.Ă‚Â The truth is that our nation is not characterized by rightousness as it once was.Ă‚Â In the 1800's a man named Alexis de'Toqueville came to America from France to observer and study the American model.Ă‚Â Our fledgling nation was rapidly expanding, our industries were booming, and our economy was strong.Ă‚Â After his study he cam to this conclusion, "Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret and genius of her power.Ă‚Â America is great because America is good.Ă‚Â And if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great."Ă‚Â Would he come to that same conclusion if he were to have made his visit to America today? "And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed." ~ Genesis 12:3 The second principle is our nation's relationship to Israel.Ă‚Â Isn't it Ironic that within a week of American diplomats urging Israel to pull out of Gaza our nation was hit with one of the worst hurricanes our nation has experienced.Ă‚Â No friends, I don't believe it is ironic that Hurricane Katrina followed on the footsteps of these events.Ă‚Â I believe that it was the hand of an almight God who was simply following through on a promise that he made to an old man all those years ago.Ă‚Â If our nation continues to turn her back on the people that God has chosen to safeguard, then soon God will turn his back on our nation.Ă‚Â They are currently passing a bill in Congress that will make it illegal for preachers to proclaim the truth about the wickedness of homosexuality.Ă‚Â Preaching against sin will soon be classified as "hate crimes."Ă‚Â The world looks on us as if we are crazy, divisive, and exentric.Ă‚Â They believe that so much, in fact, that they are willing to pass laws to illegalize our preaching against sin.Ă‚Â They must silence us.Ă‚Â Yet they fail to realize this one thing.Ă‚Â We are not the enemies to the government.Ă‚Â We are not the enemies to this nation.Ă‚Â Their sin is.Ă‚Â The preaching of rightousness from the pulpits across this nation is the only thing that can save our nation from total destruction.Ă‚Â We must once again elevate the Word of God and the power of the cross in our churches.Ă‚Â We must stand up, stand up for Jesus ye soldiers of the cross!A new stimulis package is not going to save our economy.Ă‚Â Rightousness will.Ă‚Â Prison reform will not curb crime in America.Ă‚Â Righteousness will.Ă‚Â Increased education spending will not save our nation's youth.Ă‚Â Righteousness will.Ă‚Â Righteousness will.Ă‚Â Righteousness will.In Christ,Nicholas Z. Cardot
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