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God and Hurricane Joachin

"Its move after that [landfall in the Bahamas] -- still hard to predict" -from CNN.
We have a tendency to believe that we control things.  Not so fast.  We can't even predict, let alone control storms.
   God can cause a storm so that Jonah is found out.  Then when he is dumped overboard the storm stops.  God can make a storm so fierce that veteran fishemen were afraid of their lives.  And then God can still the storm.
    In Psalm 148:7-8 we read:
Praise the Lord from the earth,
    you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
lightning and hail, snow and clouds,
    stormy winds that do his bidding,

Praise God that the storms do his bidding.

Lunar Eclipse and God

   Most of us in North America got to see the spectacular lunar eclipse last night, but there was little commentary by the scientific world on God's role in it.  Some questions:
1.)  Why is it that the moon at the right distance from the earth for the earth to cast her shadow on the moon?
2.)  Why is it a predictable event?  Who organized the heavens so we know that the next lunar eclipse won't be until 2033?
3.)  How was the moon formed?
4.)  Where did the material for the moon, the earth, and the sun come from?
As Christians, we say God made everything in perfect order.  But those who deny God don't have an answer. 

Thank  you God Almighty for creating the earth and the moon and the sun.

St. Francis of Assisi vs. Buddhism

Scott Palczak, a Buddhist, wrote this in his response to my blog:  "Saint Francis was a great proponent of animals, and one of the most highly revered saints in Western history.  I consider St. Francis to have been a much greater being than the average person who simply finds the idea of killing animals convenient or necessary.  St. Francis was trying to teach people valuable lessons about animals and the natural world we share with these creatures."

Glenn's response:  St. Francis of Assisi certainly loved animals.  But he was more than just an animal lover.  He also loved Jesus Christ, and that is ignored in most circles today.  He wrote "We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You, because by Your holy cross, You have redeemed the world. Jesus, most innocent, who neither did nor could commit a sin, was condemned to death, and moreover, to the most ignominious death of the cross. To remain a friend of Caesar, Pilate delivered Him into the hands of His enemies. A fearful crime – to condemn Innocence to death, and to offend God in order not to displease men! O innocent Jesus, having sinned, I am guilty of eternal death, but You willingly accept the unjust sentence of death, that I might live. For whom, then, shall I live, if not for You, my Lord? Should I desire to please men, I could not be Your servant. Let me, therefore, rather displease men and all the world, than not please You, O Jesus. . . Lord Jesus, crucified, have mercy on us!”

War Room vs. Clue

      War Room is a must see movie.  It is an unabashedly Christian film which makes the pagans in this world nervous, very nervous.  This powerful film depicts a struggling marriage and how prayer helps.  There cast of characters includes two children, adults in their thirties, and an older woman who prays. 
       We also saw the 1985 movie Clue which was full of sexual references.  The characters included a madame of a whorehouse, a prostitute, a man who frequently visited the whorehouse, a woman who had five husbands and had killed them all, a homosexual, a doctor who had had an affair with a patient, and a wife of a senator who was accepting bribes, Note that six of the seven characters' fault was about sex.
      The War Room is about prayer - and more prayer.  If you haven't seen it yet, run to the theater and see a great film with some redeeming values!

Buddhism - Works Righteousness via Mantras

Scott Palczak, a Buddhist, wrote "Various mantras [a sound, word, or phrase that is repeated by someone who is praying or meditating] and practices such as circumambulating (walking clockwise while chanting mantras) holy shrines and stupas are considered important for purifying negative karma." 

Glenn's response:  The way to Nirvana is through your good works.  You have to walk  clockwise (not counter or anti-clockwise!) while you chant your mantras (your prayers over and over again).  Jesus Christ said that "When you pray, do not keep babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words" (Matthew 6:7).  Since Buddhists don't believe in God, why are there holy shrines?  Who determines if someone is holy?

Jesus Christ said "I am the way, the truth, and the life."  The way to heaven is believing in Jesus Christ, not walking around a shrine and repeating the words over and over again.

Did Jesus have evil thoughts?

Is Jesus God?

Scott Palczak, a Buddhist, wrote me that the Buddhist highest guideline is "the prohibition against the bringing of harm and/or death to any living being. . . Exactly what Jesus ate for lunch and dinner we do not know, but we do know for certain that he was not a trapper, hunter, or rodeo cowboy. . .  Interestingly, the New Testament contains references to people eating fish, but Jesus Christ himself ate fish only twice."

Glenn's response:  First, the Bible tells us that Jesus ate fish three times:  1.)  when he fed the 4,000, 2.)  when he fed the 5,000, and 3.)  after His resurrection when the apostles had caught 153 fish.  Second, Jesus partook of the Passover, and at Passover, a lamb is killed and eaten.  The Buddhist claim that we are prohibited from killing any living being, even mosquitoes.  If we kill, according to Buddhism, then we have evil thoughts.  So since Christ ate fish and lamb, then Christ must have had evil thoughts.  And if He had evil thoughts, then He is  not God.

Crowned with Glory and Honor

Buddhism - Humans are not better than animals

Scott Palczak, a Buddhist, wrote this:  The world is not a creation specifically for the benefit and pleasure of human beings. Furthermore, in some circumstances in accordance with their karma, humans can be reborn as animals and animals can be reborn as humans.

Glenn's response:  I agree that the world is not a creation for the benefit and pleasure of human beings.  In Genesis 1 and 2 we see that God created the world for His pleasure.  He chose to create an earth and to put men, animals, and plants on it.  But God also created man to rule over the earth.  Thus, he made man to be stewards of the earth.  Just like stewards of yore, the steward would never think that he was the owner of the estate.  He knew that he worked on behalf of his master.  In the same way, we are placed as stewards on this earth, not for our pleasure, but to serve God.  But he did place us to rule over the earth.  We are the pinnacle of creation.  In Psalm 8 David writes "You made him a little lower than heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.  You made him ruler over the works of you hands, and put everything under his feet."

Lord God Almighty, thank You for making us the ruler of Your creation.

Are Human Beings Special?

Christianity and Buddhism Compared

Scott Palczak wrote me this:
     Unlike the Judeo-Christian tradition, Buddhism affirms the unity of all living beings, all equally posses the Buddha-nature, and all have the potential to become Buddhas, that is, to become fully and perfectly enlightened. Among the sentient, there are no second-class citizens. According to Buddhist teachings, human beings do not have a privileged, special place above and beyond that of the rest of life. The world is not a creation specifically for the benefit and pleasure of human beings. Furthermore, in some circumstances in accordance with their karma, humans can be reborn as animals and animals can be reborn as humans.

Glenn's response:
     Christianity is radically different from Buddhism.  And it is important to understand this.  Buddhism believes in a cycle of life - every animal has kharma and the better they are, the better they become.  In fact, if you take an animal to a Buddhist temple, he will improve and perhaps come back in the next life as a human. 
     Christianity states that we humans are created in God's image.  We are unique and special creatures.  Listen to what God said in Genesis 1:26-27:
     Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
27 So God created mankind in his own image,
    in the image of God he created them;
    male and female he created them.

Lord, we thank You that we are created in Your image.

Buddhism - Karma

Who judges?

Scott Palczak wrote me this:
"According to Eastern philosophy, humans amass great amounts of negative karma from abusing animals and/or people.  Since we can sense, but not see karma, it is assumed that karma is either a myth or a trivial matter - nothing to be concerned about. But the great Hindu saints and Buddhist bodhisattvas inform us that our karma, which we create all by ourselves, is the reason we continue to suffer and reincarnate. We knowingly or unknowingly create our own good - or bad - karma with every single thought, word and deed."

Let me respond:
1.  I agree that everything we do is either for good or for evil.  In Christianity, God the Son will judge us for what we do or what we do not do.  Buddhism has a problem in that they say that it is good or bad, but who judges?  In Buddhism there is no God.  So who judges?  Who judges and says that they have had good karma and therefore can come back instead of a woman as a man?  As Paul wrote in Romans 1, everyone knows that there is good and bad.  The issue is that some reject it, and others reject the God who judges.
2.  Buddhists believe in works righteousness.  If you do good, then you come back in a better life.  But that is an impossible task.  Even with the help of the Holy Spirit, I find that I continue to sin.  If I had to rely on my own righteousness, there would be no hope.  But thanks be to God, I rely on God's righteousness, not mine. 

Lives Matter

How do we treat each other matters

     How we treat each other matters.  A human being is a human being, no matter how small.  Abortion is wrong as it kills human beings.  Scientifically we know that the unborn is a child - if it wasn't how could some harvest the organs?  People have organs, plants don't.
      Enough of identity politics.  Black lives matter, Policeman lives matter, etc.  All are created in the image of God - unborn and the aged, black or white, Asian or European, refuge and foreigner.
       As Jesus said we need to start of by loving God and then as believers we can love our neighbor as ourselves.  If we don't love God first, we will never have the love for neighbors.

Why does Planned Parenthood Sell Body Parts?

Yesterday the House of Representatives began investigating Planned Parenthood for selling body parts.  When I teach Nazi Germany, I show them pictures of the carpet made from the hair of the soon to be gassed Jews. Planned Parenthood harvests and sells unborn baby organs for a profit, yet the Democrats defend the practice.

God Almighty, we ask that You send Your Holy Spirit so that our county's eyes would be opened and that we would stop this evil practice.

Time Magazine Deletes Pope's Comment on Killing Unborn

The Whole Truth?

     Time magazine quoted the Pope giving comfort to a single mom.  The Pope congratulated the woman for bringing life into the world and for being brave.  However, these words from the Pope were eliminated by Time magazine because Time is pro-abortion.  The Pope also said You could have killed them inside your womb, and Hold your head high. I didn’t kill my daughters.

Lord, thank  you for the Pope who believes in the scientific evidence of life.

(source:  http://www.lifenews.com/2015/09/09/time-magazine-censors-quote-from-pope-francis-calling-abortion-the-killing-of-a-baby/)

The Value of Work

I owe, I owe, it's off to work I go.

[This blog was previously posted for Labor Day in 2013]
   "I owe. I owe. It's off to work I go."  Is this our view of labor?  We have to work because we owe money to someone?  If only we were out of debt, then I would not have to work?
     I am in debt and I have to work.  But that is not the main reason I work.  I work because man was created to work.  In Genesis 2:15 we read:  "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it."  Before Adam sinned, he was working.  Before Adam sinned, God worked in creating the world.  So I suspect that in heaven we work there as well.
     We should view work as a blessing, not a curse.  We were created to work.  So let us work to our full potential and make our employer proud that he has hired a Christian.

Selfish by Kim Kardashian

    Kim Kardashian has published a 448 page book contain selfies (pictures she took of herself).  According to one UK study, the average 16-25 year old takes three selfies a day - and to prepare for each one takes 16 minutes.  The average British 16-25 year old has 150 selfies on their phone.

Lord, You said that we should love our neighbors as ourselves.  Help us to love our neighbors.

(source:  http://www.cnet.com/news/young-women-spend-five-hours-a-week-taking-selfies-says-survey/)
   

How many words in the Bible and Federal Tax Code?

      How many words are there in the Federal tax code?  The tax code is about 3.8 million words on at least 5,000 pages.  The Bible has about 800,000 words, making the Federal tax code five times the size of the Bible.  Failing to heed the instructions of both will get you into trouble, one for a little while if caught, one for eternity.  One squashes life with onerous rules and one gives life.

Lord, may we read Thy Word and follow Thee.

(source:  http://www.politifact.com/new-jersey/statements/2013/may/02/leonard-lance/leonard-lance-claims-federal-tax-code-contains-4-m/)