Sunday, December 24, 2006


Merry Christmas and happy New Year to all my blogbuddies. Hope you all get to spend time with your families this week.
Jan and I are headed to Tennessee on Tuesday. Elizabeth and her two boys are going along with us so, the Lord willing, the whole family can be together one more time. That is such a rare thing these days.
Let's remember to pray for and give thanks for our troops who are fighting our enemies "over there" so we don't have to fight them over here.

Friday, December 15, 2006


They didn't ask me for it. Unlike the prodigal son of Luke ch.15, my children haven't come to me asking that I go ahead and give them the portion of goods that will be theirs at my passing. It was my own decision. This year I am giving them most of their inheritance.

Before your imagination runs away with you as you wonder how much it will be and if I am so financially well off that I can give most of it away and live on what's left... I must tell you that it isn't money. It isn't property either seeing that I don't own even a square inch of land anywhere on this earth. As far as earthly possessions go, I have very little to give them that would have any monetary value.

What, one might ask, is the inheritance that you are giving to your kids ? I warn you, this isn't going to be very exciting: The inheritance I'm giving my three children is worn out Bibles.

I had 3 shadow boxes made large enough to hold a Bible. To Steve, the first born, I am giving my first "preaching Bible". To Jeremy, the second born, my second "preaching Bible. To Elizabeth, the baby and only girl, I'm giving the third "preaching Bible".

These Bibles have no monetary value to anyone. To me, however, they represent something far more valuable than money that I want to pass down to my children. When and/or if they remember me when I have gone from this earth, I want them to remember that, with all my failures, my life was dedicated to the preaching of God's Word.

I think all parents would agree that parenting is difficult under the best of circumstances. It comes with a built-in guilt trip. As I look back over the last 28 years of my life as a minister, my failures nag at me and remind me that I haven't always been the best dad. I could have been kinder and more understanding with them as they grew up. I wish I hadn't been so determined to get everything "right" that I took away some of their freedom to just be kids. There were thousands of down right stupid things that I'm trying hard to forget, am hoping that they won't hold them against me.

At times during their childhood, my children were forced to live in less than ideal conditions (while on the mission field and while preparing to go to the field). I hope that when they see these worn out Bibles, that they will be reminded that we were in those conditions because their mother and I were trying to serve God and His gospel as best we could.

My prayer is that my flickering, faltering passion for God and His Word has and will infect my children with a greater passion than I have ever shown, and that they will in turn infect their children with that same passion. Then, one day in a better land, if Jan and I can gather our children and grandchildren together at the feet of Jesus, and join them in singing "Thou art worthy"; I will know that this was the best inheritance I could have left them.

Thursday, December 14, 2006


Yesterday was Jeremy's birthday, the big three- ooo! Sorry I'm a day late Jeremy.
You've crossed the hump and life goes by faster and faster as you go down hill from here. (Just a word of encouragement.) Happy belated birthday Jerms.

Thursday, December 07, 2006


For a while now, on Wednesday evenings, I have been taking one of the Psalms each time and just touching on the highlights of the Psalm as an encouragement to prayer. The Psalms are filled with examples of prayer as well as instruction. The writers are real people with real problems, fears, and doubts. We are permitted to listen in as they bring their praise and their requests to God.

Last week, as I was meditating on Psalm 17, I was blown away by both the tone and the content of David's prayer, especially by the first four verses. Here read them for yourself.

Psa 17:1 Hear the right, O LORD, attend unto my cry, give ear unto my prayer, that goeth not out of feigned lips.
Psa 17:2 Let my sentence come forth from thy presence; let thine eyes behold the things that are equal.
Psa 17:3 Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
Psa 17:4 Concerning the works of men, by the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer.

See what I mean? David is asking God to hear his prayer based on his own personal integrity, rightness and innocence. Now we all know that David would never make any claim to sinless perfection, but in this instance, he claims to be clean.

How could anyone , even a pre-Bathsheba David be bold enough to pray this way? I think the reason that David could pray this way is that as far as his claim to personal integrity went, it was true. There are at least 3 very important things that had characterized David's life up to that point. (This Psalm was probably written during the time when he was fleeing from Saul.) Three things that he constantly practiced, that made it possible for him to pray this way.

First and most importantly, he worshiped God. God's own testimony of him was:"...I have found David... A man after mine own heart..."(Acts13:22) David spent much time in communion with God. He knew God's heart and sought to model it in his own life. He lived with a constant awareness of God. He lived his life before the Lord. Psalm 8 brings to my mind an image of young David, the shepherd, sitting on a Judean hill looking into a vast, starlit sky and worshiping the God who is great enough to make it all; yet is merciful enough to condescend to lowly man. When one lives like that, there are no impediments to prayer.

Also, David was careful. He tried always face every trial in a way that would most glorify God. He was careful not to seek his own advancement. He was careful not to act rashly, even when men would say he was justified in doing so. One of the greatest examples of this is his treatment of Saul while he was trying to kill David. On at least two occasions, it appeared that God had delivered Saul into David's hands. The occasion at En-gedi illustrates David's carefulness. David and his men are in a cave. Saul, not knowing that David and his men are in the cave, goes in to take a break(?). While he is there and very vulnerable, David is encouraged by his men to take advantage of the situation. "God has delivered your enemy into your hands" they say. David refuses to harm Saul, but he does cut off a part of Saul's robe. Then David's heart convicts him for even going that far in "Touching the Lord's anointed". When one is that careful with his actions and attitudes; when one is that sensitive in his heart, there will be no hindrance to prayer.

The third characteristic of David's young life, that enabled him to pray with such boldness, was his utter dependence on God. When David faced Goliath, he did not go with Saul's armour. He refused the armour not because it didn't fit, for surely there was armour available that would have fit his size. He refused the armour because it represented a dependence on human ingenuity. He wanted every one to know who the real Protector of Israel was. He went to battle the giant depending on God.

When David faced Saul at En-gedi after the robe trimming incident, he explained his refusal to harm Saul in this way:

1Sa 24:12 The LORD judge between me and thee, and the LORD avenge me of thee: but mine hand shall not be upon thee.

David knew that God had anointed him to be king. He knew that one day he was destined to sit on the throne of Israel. Even so, he would not put forth his hand to take it for himself. He would wait for God to do it in His time and in His way. One whose life is characterized by utter dependence on God will be able to pray boldly.

The point of all this rambling is this: The way we live is vitally connected to the way we pray. We can't live sloppy, half-hearted, semi-worldly lives and expect to pray in holy boldness. Because of the way David lived, he was able to come before God with confidence. Or as someone has said: "As a son seeking approval rather than as a criminal seeking pardon."

"The whole life must pray"(Tozer), not just our lips.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I changed the blog to Beta today. The reason I changed is that I noticed a few comments on other blogs that were complaining about having trouble commenting on blogs that had not switched yet. So I figured that's why I'm not getting hundreds of comments on my thought provoking and oft times controversial posts.

Another reason is that every time I go to my dashboard, it tries to convince me to change. I'm weak. I didn't wanna do it, but I doed it.

Reason number next is that, according to 'them', Blogger in Beta is better than Blogger in Blogger. Yeah, really! It says you can drag and drop stuff. Really! I'm not kiddin'.
Folks, to be honest with you, I don't have a clue about draggin' anything on the computer, but I'm sure if I do drag it, I'll prolly drop it.

And finally, I changed 'cause they said that within a couple of months everyone would be required to change. I would have refused, but it's just not the hill I want to die on.

Hope it doesn't cause you any trouble trying to access this blog or comment. O.K. Open the flood gates! Let the responses flow!

Monday, December 04, 2006


One Monday morning after having been especially blessed during the previous day's worship service at the church he attended, a barber discovered that his first customer of the day was a Presbyterian pastor. When he finished the pastor's haircut, the barber refused payment. The next morning when he opened his shop, he found a beautiful thank-you note from the pastor whose hair he had cut for free.

Later that day, he found that one of his patrons was a Southern Baptist pastor. He still had a warm glow in his heart from his experience with the pastor of the previous day, so when he finished with this pastor's hair, he again refused payment. The pastor was very appreciative, and the next morning when the barber arrived at his shop, he found on his door a thank-you note and a gift card for lunch at a local restaurant from the Southern Baptist pastor. His heart almost overflowed as he thought to himself "You can't out-give God".

Later that day an Independent Baptist pastor came into the shop and again, the barber refused payment saying "God has blessed me for not charging two other pastors so I won't charge you either". The next morning as he neared his shop he found..............Fifteen Independent Baptist preachers wanting a free haircut.

Friday, December 01, 2006


I've had all I can stands andI can't stands no more (ht Popeye)! I have tried to keep silent about this, but it seems that no one else is going to confront this almost universally voiced theo-historical lie!

While so many in the blogosphere are battling insignificant things like Lordship salvation, antinomianism and such, a horrible heresy is being voiced all across the world, and no one seems to care. Well, I care! And by jimeny(Sorry. Didn't mean to swear.)I'm gonna thunder out the truth even if it costs me my head!

What is this grievious falsehood that is so widely taught and so universally ignored? I'm glad you asked. It seems that almost everywhere I hear or read some one refering to the humble birth of Jesus, they always say that He was born in a manger. Nuh-uhh! He was born in a stable and laid in a manger.

Whew! I said it!I guess I 'm feeling a little bit like Martin Luther must have felt as he put it all on the line to rescue truth from evil hands of heretics. Both at peace and at the same time a little bit scared. But we have to choose our battles, and folks, I am ready to go to the wall for this one. Besides, all the really good stuff to fight about has already been taken by guys like Centuri0n,
Dan Phillips, Phil Johnson, Jeremy, and Daniel at Doulogos.