Saturday, March 26, 2016

Easter Sunday Miraculous Good News---You Can't Keep a Good God Down

By John Piper @ Desiring God

JESUS WAS DEAD AND BURIED, with a big stone rolled against the tomb, and the Pharisees came to Pilate to ask for permission to seal the stone and guard the tomb. Pilate responded, “You have a guard of soldiers. Go, make it as secure as you can” (Matthew 27:65). So they did
They gave it their best shot — in vain.

It was hopeless then, it is hopeless today, and it will always be hopeless. Try as they may, people can’t keep Jesus down. They can’t keep him buried. They may use physical force or academic scorn or media blackout or political harassment or religious caricature. For a season, they will think the tomb is finally sealed. But it never works. He breaks out.

No One Takes His Life

It’s not hard to figure out: He can break out because he wasn’t forced in. He lets himself be libeled and harassed and black-balled and scorned and shoved around and killed.
I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. (John 10:17–18)
No one can keep him down because no one ever knocked him down. He lay down when he was ready.

China may have been “closed” for forty years to Western missionaries, and it’s not because Jesus slipped and fell into the tomb. He stepped in. And when it was sealed over, he saved fifty million Chinese from inside — without Western missionaries. And when it was time, he pushed the stone away so we could see what he had done.

At Work in the Dark

When it looks like he is buried for good, Jesus is doing something awesome in the dark. “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how” (Mark 4:26–27).
The world thinks Jesus is done for — out of the way. They think his word is buried for good in the dust of irrelevant antiquity.

But Jesus is at work in the dark places: “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24). He let himself be buried — “no one takes my life from me” — and he will come out in power when and where he pleases — “I have authority to take it up again.” And his hands will be full of fruit made in the dark.

“God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it” (Acts 2:24). Jesus has his priesthood today “by the power of an indestructible life” (Hebrews 7:16).
For twenty centuries, the world has given it their best shot — in vain. They can’t bury him. They can’t hold him in. They can’t silence him or limit him.

Jesus is alive and utterly free to go and come wherever he pleases. “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Matthew 28:18). All things were made through him and for him, and he is absolutely supreme over all other powers (Colossians 1:16–17)
Trust him and go with him, no matter what. You cannot lose in the end.

Ten Gifts of the Resurrection

So, here on Resurrection Sunday, as an aid to Easter worship, celebrate with me these ten things we owe to the resurrection of Jesus. Each has an accompanying text.

1) A Savior who can never die again

We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again. (Romans 6:9)

2) Repentance

“The God of our fathers raised Jesus, whom you killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:30–31)

3) New birth

According to his great mercy, [God the Father] has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. (1 Peter 1:3)

4) Forgiveness of sin

If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. (1 Corinthians 15:17)

5) The Holy Spirit

“This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing.” (Acts 2:32–33)

6) No condemnation for the elect

Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died — more than that, who was raised — who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. (Romans 8:34)

7) The Lord’s personal fellowship and protection

“Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)

8) Proof of coming judgment

“[God] has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.” (Acts 17:31)

9) Salvation from the future wrath of God

[We] wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:10; also Romans 5:10)

10) Our own resurrection from the dead

[We know] that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. (2 Corinthians 4:14; also Romans 6:4; 8:11; 1 Corinthians 6:14; 15:20)
The Lord is risen indeed! 

And that is the greatest news the world has ever known.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Mayhem In Brussels, Predicted By Trump, Mocked By New York Times



On January 27, 2016, the New York Times ran a story mocking Donald John Trump: "Donald Trump Finds New City to Insult: Brussels." Oh that silly mogul. What does he know about anything, right?

From their majesties, reporters Dan Bilefsky and Claire Barthelemy of the New York Times:

LONDON — He incensed Paris and London by saying that some of their neighborhoods were so overrun with radicals that the police were too scared to enter. He raised Scottish tempers by threatening to pull the plug on his investments there, including his luxury golf courses, if British politicians barred him from entering Britain.

Now Donald J. Trump has upset the already beleaguered people of Belgium, calling its capital, Brussels, “a hellhole.”

Asked by the Fox Business Network anchor Maria Bartiromo about the feasibility of his proposal to bar foreign Muslims from entering the United States, Mr. Trump argued that Belgium and France had been blighted by the failure of Muslims in these countries to integrate. “There is something going on, Maria,” he said. “Go to Brussels. Go to Paris. Go to different places. There is something going on and it’s not good, where they want Shariah law, where they want this, where they want things that — you know, there has to be some assimilation. There is no assimilation. There is something bad going on.”

Warming to his theme, he added that Brussels was in a particularly dire state. “You go to Brussels — I was in Brussels a long time ago, 20 years ago, so beautiful, everything is so beautiful — it’s like living in a hellhole right now,” Mr. Trump continued.

By the way, after their story ridiculing The Donald ended, the Times footnoted: "Get news and analysis from Europe and around the world delivered to your inbox every day with the Today’s Headlines: European Morning newsletter. Sign up here."

 I would rather clean up cow manure. Just remember, the Left mocked Mitt Romney's concerns about ISIS in 2012.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Palm Sunday: The Strange, Wonderful Ride Into Jerusalem and Beginning of the End of Satan's Kingdom

EVEN AS JESUS MADE HIS HUMBLE ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM on the back of a donkey days before his painful and humiliating crucifixion and death at Calvary, it is believed another famous  ruler was simultaneously making his entry into the city in a much grander way: Equestrian Pontius Pilate was arriving on a grand stallion from Caesarea. The contrasts of each man's entry could not have been more different. Though Pilate later, reluctantly let Jesus go to the Cross as the riotous crowd of Jews demanded at His trial, he found no reason to condemn the humble man who he called The King of the Jews.

David Mathius at Desiring God writes,

PASSION WEEK BEGINS WITH PALMS. Branches are cut from trees, hands are raised in praise, and the most important figure in history enters the greatest city in the first century for the most important week that’s ever been.

This unrecognized prince has a rightful claim to the throne of his people as the heir of their most celebrated king. And yet he rides in manifest humility, on the back of a donkey’s colt — like no other ruler in the first century, or the twenty-first century, would dare stoop to do.

And this, of course, is not the extent of his meekness and lowliness. He will stoop yet further this holy week, and then further still when he is “raised up” to the lowest of all places, to the utter shame and ignominy of a brutal public execution, even death on a cross.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Mr. Trump, I Have A Word For You

I UNDERSTAND YOU'RE ADVISING ALL US FOX NEWS VIEWERS not to watch Megyn Kelly anymore, saying she's not  a great professional and doesn't deserve our attention and time.

My response to your silliness: What I think of Megyn is none of your business, nor anyone else's.  I'm quite capable of making up my own mind about who and what I watch and read.  This megalomaniac over-reach of advice and warning is turning me off and is not presidential or attractive in someone who pretends to be a contender.

If this continues,  it will not end well, no matter whose back you may supposedly have.You don't have mine and you don't have my brain either.

I'll say it like Fox News today:  this obsession with Megyn is truly unattractive and a bore.

Meanwhile,  at Zero Hedge today, Donald talking 25 years ago:

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Preparation for Our Lord's Passion: The Alabaster Jar

JOHN 12:3-8

3Mary then took a pound of very costly perfume of pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4But Judas Iscariot, one of His disciples, who was intending to betray Him, said, 5“Why was this perfume not sold for three hundred denarii and given to poor people?6Now he said this, not because he was concerned about the poor, but because he was a thief, and as he had the money box, he used to pilfer what was put into it. 7Therefore Jesus said, “Let her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of My burial. 8“For you always have the poor with you, but you do not always have Me.”


Saturday, March 12, 2016

Social Justice Warriors---We May Be Nearing the End of the Republic, But It's Not Trump's Fault

I'VE JUST GOTTEN HOME FROM A TRIP.  Though I barely opened my computer,  I've definitely been keeping up with the news. Over the last week,   I've come to admire much less my former candidate Ted Cruz---if some of the reports I've read are true--- and Donald Trump more.

What happened yesterday in Chicago, aka thug city---then St. Louis, where baby brat violent lives matter, and today in Dayton, Ohio are just a taste of things to come and of  what  mob violence---fueled by liberal, divisive thugs like do to help get Trump be elected.

Rod Dreher @ The American Conservative has a great piece up today on how these social justice warriors (SJWs) are going to get Trump elected and in my opinion, probably by a landslide.  If someone doesn't end up killing him first.  Frankly that scares me.  Security has got to be incredibly tight as protestors  think they realize their are no consequences to protesting anymore.

Dreher's bottom line which I agree with:

What happened  in Chicago is why we need Trump, as obnoxious as he is, to keep going. I am not a Trump supporter, and I reject much of his rhetoric. But he has a right to give a speech, even an obnoxious speech, without it being interrupted by demonstrators. All of us do. Trump is revealing how impossible it is to have a normal democracy with the activist left, who think their crying need for “safe spaces” gives them the right to silence their opponents.

No. This political correctness needs to be opposed, and it needs to be opposed with force. I don’t know why the police couldn’t handle this situation, but they had better be on it in the future, because many Americans will not stand for this. What those protesters have done tonight is create a lot more Trump voters out of people who are sick and tired of privileged leftists using thug tactics to silence their opponents.

I would feel exactly the same way if conservative protesters tried to shut down a Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders rally. Protest all you want, but do it outside the venue, or silently inside. Do not silence the speaker, because if you do that, you legitimize your opponents trying to silence the speakers from your side. Thuggish, illiberal tactics like this from the left call forth the same kind of thing from the right. When right-wing white nationalist types show up and make trouble at Democratic rallies, or BLM rallies, and get them cancelled, on what grounds will you on the left have to complain?
 For me, it’s all about the mob. I despise the mob. Any mob, which I define as a crowd that acts in force to silence people by intimidation or actual violence. We have seen over the past few months how left-wing mobs on college campuses have gotten away with outrageous things, because men and women in authority on those campuses lacked the guts to stand up for the liberal civic order. This is why I cannot support Black Lives Matter, even though I support its goal of bringing critical attention to police brutality: because they believe that their cause is so righteous that they have the right to stomp over anybody who doesn’t share their vision.
I urge you to read the entire piece.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Sunday: Open the Eyes Of Our Hearts, Lord


FROM FRAYDNA:  Presidential election from a Christian perspective

Cruz Wins Kansas, Maybe Kentucky?


Ted Cruz is my candidate.  In my opinion, he would make an exceptionally great president. Trump is a disaster.  Cruz is not the one. I know, I could be (sorta) wrong....but I don't think so.

Still, in the higher scheme of things,  when we put all our hope in a presidential candidate, aren't we really setting ourselves up for disappointment?  Isn't really a father fixation that's been transferred from family to big government?

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Mitt Romney Disgraces Himself and GOP Elites


LOOK, I'M NOT THE BIGGEST TRUMP FAN ON THE PLANET BY A LONG SHOT. However, if he's the GOP candidate, I will hold my nose and vote for him over Hillary, in spite of what I've mused in the past. It's Trump over Clinton from here on, unless Cruz somehow manages a miracle. I don't have to like it. I remain a Ted Cruz supporter. Trump could be a presidential disaster and disappointment for sure. He could be a Hitler-in-waiting. But so could Hillary. Yet when I watch the failed 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney, a tool of the elite GOP establishment who wants to run again, try to take down Trump, I cringe.   I know Romney wants to seize the nomination at the convention.  It ain't gonna happen.  Not a chance.

Romney made a major political faux pas which will only serve to propel Trump onward, and not effect voters in the least.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Rest In Peace, Dear LaFon

THIS DEAR FRIEND, HIKING BUDDY,  ROLE MODEL AND SISTER-IN-CHRIST IN JACKSON HOLE HAS DIED.  She went fast.  One of the best of the best.  I will sorely, sorely miss her on the trail and off. We hiked together on Wednesdays. She could out-walk women half her age, including me. Rest, dear LaFon, in peace.   Her obit.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

A Few Words About Erin Andrews' Trial Against Marriott Vanderbilt In Nashville


It's terrible, to put it mildly. The shock, humiliation, violation, anger and grief she rightly feels has to be profound. The world can often be a wicked place, especially for a high-profile and attractive woman  like Erin. Even if she wins, nothing will bring  her public viewing  by prurient eyes back.

That said, I'm not sure this deserves a $72 million judgment which seems a bit excessive unless the lawyers can justify it (their salaries?!) I'm not sure the hotel is more guilty than someone in central reservations who might have been on his or her first day of work.  The culprit who did this at least three times in different locations has done time in prison and probably has ruined the rest of his life and career for his acts of very poor judgment---the understatement of the decade.

Hopefully the facts will all come out in time. Still, after going through court proceedings myself and winning through settlement (though nothing will bring back the 75' 60 year-old trees this ruthless developer took down on our boundary line), I know the crime on top of the incredible stress of  this prosecution are trying on one's heart and soul---not to mention very expensive. My heart goes out to Erin in her long ordeal.