Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Word Power

In Words We Trust
Words have meaning. The Words chosen by the Holy Spirit in Holy Writ have meaning. We need to be willing to diligently discover the meaning of those Words.

ABADDON - in the Old Testament, a  place name of the realm of the dead. Three times in the Old Testament Abaddon is paralledled with Sheol (Job 26:6; Prov. 15:11; 27:20) In Job 28:22 it is equal to death, and in Psalms 88:11 is refers to the grave.

Abaddon belongs to the realm of the mysterious. Only God fully understands it. (Job 26:6; Prov. 15:11) It is the place or world of the dead in its utterly dismal, destructive, and dreadful aspects. In Abaddon there are no declarations of God's lovingkindness, (Psalms 88:11)

In the New Testament the word occurs once (Rev 9:11), the personalization becoming sharp. Abaddon is here not th world of the dead, but the angel who reigns over it. The Greek equivalent of his name is given as Apollyon. 1.

1.  W. J. Bdeecher, ISBE, Vol. 1,( Eerdmans: Grand Rapid Michigan), p.2

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Are You Getting the most Bang for Your Buck?

The other day I was working my way through my blog roll when I came across a blog that caught my eye. It made me stop and check it out. You know the kind that make you go ummmmm? Well, it made me do more than go ummmmmm. It made me do some thinking.

How expensive is your church membership? What are you getting for your church membership? Now, let me make it clear that I am really addressing this to the seeker-sensitive, cutting-edge, and/or production type churches rather than truly biblical churches.

Here is what I mean. Most of these churches have an entrance or membership fee; it is called the tithe. Setting aside the true teaching of the tithe for a moment, I am referring to that 10% or more that is received each week at your church. Let's say you make $60,000.00 a year. That puts your "tithe" at $6,000.00 a year. What are you getting for that $6,000.00? Mind you this works out to about $115.38 a week. Even if the show, oops sorry, the performance, oh again, sorry, service is 2 hours in length, that is roughly $58.00 an hour.

Most of these seeker-sensitive and cutting edge churches are drama, skit, or musical performance oriented. I mean they have huge productions. They have full costumes, lights, smoke machines, fans, even rain makers. The lighting alone must be horrendously expensive. In addition, many would be actors and actresses, regardless of how talented they may truly be flock to these churches to live out their long denied dreams of stardom.

Are these services worth $58.00 an hour? I can not think of anything that I have done that would cost that much, at least lately.

  • Netfliks charges 7.99 to watch unlimited number of movies as many times as you want.
  • Seattle Seahawk single game tickets in the nosebleed sections run about $155.00 or for a 3 hour game $51.67 an hour
  • Disneyland offers a ticket pass for $199.99 for three days which grants entrance into Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park  
  • Even our "cheap date night (somebody thought I should have used inexpensive date night) runs about $10.68 (Lest you women start trying to find a better husband for Irene, we spend our money on many other items making life easier or for our kids, neighbors, and even strangers)
At our church, Coal Creek Community Church, we don't have productions, shows, drama, skits, or even musical performances. We don't have light machines, bubble machines, smoke machines, or rain-making machines. For our gifts and offerings, we do not practice tithing at Coal Creek, we receive each week the opportunity to gather with our brother and sisters in Christ, sing a couple of hymns, and hear a well studied and prepared exegetical and expositional message from the Gospel According to Matthew by a humble and gifted bible teacher.
    Now, you are well aware that this has been somewhat tongue in cheek right? We at Coal Creek are not paying a membership fee anymore than most of the seeker-sensitive churches are. I am not impugning their motives nor judging their hearts. I thought I would play a little devil's advocate for a moment in order to evaluate the best way to invest in eternity and expand the kingdom of God.

    Monday, November 28, 2011

    Monday Facts

    Monday Facts is a weekly blog party designed to help you meet other bloggers. Tell us about your weekend, or give us some random facts that help us get to know you better!

    Share your Monday post,  

    Fact:  I appreciate all your well wishes in regards to my cold. Thank you so much! You were all so kind!

    Fact:  I am feeling much better and it seems the cold is going away. As I type this, it is all but gone! Yeah!!!!

    Fact:  Thanksgiving was wonderful! Irene and I had a very relaxing day together. We went to Sizzler's for their Thanksgiving Special. We let them cook, serve, and clean up! We spent the day in thankful reading and relaxing in our recliners. New tradition at the Metcalf Ranchero - if we are not invited, or we do not accept any proffered invitations for Thanksgiving dinner from hence forth, we are skipping the preparation, cooking, and clean up and going to Sizzlers!

    Fact:  I watch the Lions play every Thanksgiving. This year was no exception; was pleased to see Green Bay go 11-0 even though the Lions seem to be rebuilding. Tough game for the Lions. Contrary to the fantasies of the "left", there can only be one winner. Congrats to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.

    Fact:  I married on a Monday evening, at 7:30 PM, June 18th, 1973. Shortly afterwards the Marine Corps slated me for a 6 month Mediterranean Cruise aboard an LPH (Landing Platform Helicopter) Newly married, and not wanting to leave my new bride for a Mediterranean Float I was able to trade my 5711 MOS billet slot with a guy who wanted to go on a six month float and I was assigned to HMH 461 (Heavy Marine Helicopter)

    Fact:  Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 461 (HMH-461) is a United States Marine Corps helicopter squadron consisting of CH-53E Super Stallion transport helicopters. The squadron, known as "Ironhorse", is based at Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina and falls under the command of Marine Aircraft Group 26 (MAG-26) and the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (2nd MAW).

    HMH 461 provides timely and effective CH-53E helicopter combat assault transport of heavy equipment, personnel and supplies, on order to support the Marine Air-Ground Task Force and other units. I served with HMH 461 as an NBC NCO, Training NCO, and Operations clerk. I served HMH 461 from July 1973 to March 1974.

    Fact: "My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth." (Psalms 121:2, ESV)

    Fact:  I was summoned for jury duty for Cowlitz County. My group number is 5 and I have to report tomorrow, (Monday November 28, 2011.) Supposedly there is a trial - hopefully they will plea bargain down.

    Fact:  I have served on a jury for Clark County, Vancouver, WA. In fact I was chosen to be jury foreman. It was just like TV, the judge asked me, "Mr. Foreman?" I looked around, I was excited, for a minute I thought George Foreman was in the courtroom. But the judge only meant me, "Mr. Foreman," he said, "Has the jury reached a verdict?"  I got to say, "We have your honor, not guilty."

    We all thought she was guilty of the charge but we concluded that the prosecutor did not prove his case and based on the shoddy evidence presented we had to vote not guilty (based on evidence not gut feeling/emotion)

    Fact:  She did it. She simply drew a prosecutor who was ill prepared and who thought the case was a slam dunk. He forgot about 12 honest citizens. Wow, was the Deputy Sheriff mad who had arrested her!

     Fact:  This is the last Monday's Fact until after the New Year.  


    Fact:  Christ for Chicago needs your prayers and support. Please check out their website and consider becoming a prayer partner with them as they seek to plant a new church in Chicago. Josh and Erin are personal friends whom I recommend to you and your mission $$'s

    Sunday, November 27, 2011

    Facing Death and knowing God thru Christ

    "See in what peace a Christian can die."

    ~~ Joseph Addison, writer,
    d. June 17, 1719

    Saturday, November 26, 2011

    I learned everything from Noah's Ark!

    1. Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.

    2. Stay fit. When you're 600 years old, someone might ask you to do something REALLY big.

    3. Don't listen to critics -- do what has to be done.

    4. Build on high ground.

    5. For safety's sake, travel in pairs.

    6. Two heads are better than one.

    7. Speed isn't always an advantage. The cheetahs were on board, but so were the snails.

    8. If you can't fight or flee -- float!

    9. Don't forget that we're all in the same boat.

    10. Remember that the ark was built by amateurs and the Titanic was built by professionals.

    11. Remember that the woodpeckers INSIDE are often a bigger threat than the storm outside.

    12. Don't miss the boat.

    13. No matter how bleak it looks, if God is with you, there's always a rainbow on the other side.

    Friday, November 25, 2011

    The Day After Thanksgiving

    Your acid reflux will make you weep
    you'll cry and cry, and try to sleep
    but sleep won't come the whole night through
    your acid reflux, will burn a whole in you


    when tears come down your face like rain
    you'll hunt around for something to kill the pain
    you'll walk the floor the way we all do
    your acid reflux, will burn a whole in you

    your big blue eyes made you stuff your face
    you had to eat everything around your place
    but now you feel what real heartburn can do
    your acid reflux will burn a whole in you

    just one more piece of pie one more turkey leg
    a couple more rolls and a dozen devil eggs
    gravy so spicy it was like witches brew
    your acid reflux will burn a whole in you


    when tears come down your face like rain
    you'll hunt around for something to kill the pain
    you'll walk the floor the way we all do
    your acid reflux, will burn a whole in you


    you're on the hunt for a bottle of tums or two
    and now you know what real heart-burn can do

    So, stop your crying and just cowboy up
    go pour some Maalox in your favorite coffee cup
    and take a lesson that really isn't so new
    your acid reflux, will burn a whole in you

    (Gregg Metcalf, November 17, 2011)
    (to the tune of Hank Williams, Sr.'s "You're Cheatin' Heart")

    Note:  The tree in our house usually goes up today (the day of Thanksgiving), with an impending move we may not put up a tree; so I put up a tree on my blog the day after Thanksgiving.

    Thursday, November 24, 2011

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you! May God grant you a blessed time of fellowship and thanksgiving today!

    I am praying that you all have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving Day.

    Everyday is to be filled with unceasing thanksgiving and prayer due to the mighty grace of our glorious God! As this nation feasts on food, football, fun, and fantasy pray that this might be the day perhaps God in His grace will grant repentance and claim some as His possession in Christ Jesus our Lord!

     Thank you everyone who reads this blog! You are a great encouragement and blessing to me. I love you all and it is my prayer that you and your family are enjoying a tremendously blessed Thanksgiving Day with those whom you love! 

    Praise God, from whom all blessings flow
    Praise him all creatures here below
    Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts
    Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!

    Wednesday, November 23, 2011

    A Very Beatles Christmas

    From the, "Say What?" File...

    A “fresh, fast-paced performance of the Gospel according to Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, George and Ringo!”

    That’s the promise from Kirkwood United Methodist Church, which announced this morning that its members would Come Together for a little less than Eight Days a Week (two days, in fact) next month to celebrate Christmas with Beatles songs.

    “The carefully selected collection of Beatles songs in our production are authentic to the lives of Mary and Joseph, who were real people going through genuine strife and consternation, and ultimately, genuine joy and wonder at the birth of Jesus,” director, and KUMC associate pastor, Rocky Marlowe said in a statement. “Relating their story in modern language not only makes the story fresh, but very relatable and inviting.”

    "Let it Be Christmas" will be staged Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10 at 7:30 p.m. at St. Louis Community College at Meramec Theatre - 11333 Big Bend Road.

    Reserved seating for this performance is available for a suggested donation of $12. For general admission tickets, the suggested donation is $10 for adults, and $8 for seniors (65+) and children 12 and under. Tickets are available online at, or at the church, located at 201 W. Adams in Kirkwood.

    After the Beatles pageant concludes, church leaders promise to Get Back to traditional Christmas celebrations, including a creche scene featuring Lady Madonna.

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011

    Gregg Metcalf says God did not persuade Herman Cain to run for president

     Herman Cain says God told him to run for president

    In a article by Ray Henry, Herman Cain said that God convinced him to enter the race for president. Apparently Cain's first response was Mosesesque, "You've got the wrong man, Lord, Are you sure?"

    The article goes on to quote Cain, "That's when I prayed and prayed and prayed. I'm a man of faith, I had to do a lot of praying for this one, more praying than I've ever done before in my life." "And when I finally realized that it was God saying that his is what I needed to do, I was like Moses, 'You've got the wrong man, Lord. Are you sure?"

    Now first of all, what is the Lord going to say? "Wait a minute Herman, let me check my Decrees and Divine Purpose book." "Yeah, it's right here on page 777, 7th on the right, tell Herman Cain to run for president.'"

    Second, setting the theology aside that would demonstrate unequivocally that divine revelation has ceased, why make such a statement at all? I have no problem with Cain being as he calls himself, "a man of faith." I have no problem with a man of faith running for the presidency, but why make such a claim? Cain may very well be a fine, decent, honorable, and upstanding man whom we may need at this hour. (although I am still opposed to 9-9-9)

    There is no way to verify the claim. Cain certainly was careful with the words he disclosed, i. e. there is nothing that commits God to making sure he wins the presidency. If he fails to get the nomination or if he gets it and looses to Obama both God and Cain can arise from the ashes as "unscathed."

    What has got a burr under my saddle? Why can't we just take responsibility for our decisions and actions? Why do we need to justify our decisions with the caveat, God told me to do it? After all, we poo-poo all those who kill their fellow human beings and then bring God to their defense by stating He told them to do it.

    The Scriptures give us no room to state that God tells us to do or not to for that matter anything. However, over and over we are told such things as, "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths." (Proverbs 3:5-6, ESV) " not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:6-7, ESV)

    We can go to God in earnest prayer and commit our plans, our goals, our desires, and our ideas to God and then trust God, who knows what is absolutely best for us, to enable us to bring those plans or decisions to fruition or not through circumstances, people, and or finances. God opens doors and closes doors and actually directs the steps of His children in His perfect will. This comes from being sensitive to the events and people around us, not because God "speaks to us" and persuades us verbally to take a course of action.

    I would much rather a candidate state that after earnest and devout prayer that he or she has the peace that God provides and is making a run for the White House than to have them say God told me to do it. I have absolute confidence that through a number of circumstances, some favorable and some not so favorable, God led me to Longview to plant a church. He did not tell me to do this, he didn't speak to me verbally. If for some reason this church doesn't succeed or if God opens an existing church in Texas or Tennessee it wasn't because God told me so.

    Monday, November 21, 2011

    Monday Facts

    Monday Facts is a weekly blog party designed to help you meet other bloggers. Tell us about your weekend, or give us some random facts that help us get to know you better!

    Share your Monday post, and link back here! ☺

    Fact:  I have a cold.

    Fact:  I have avoided the cold and flu for the last two or three years.

    Fact:  I hate being sick. Thank you God for the wife you gave me who will "baby" me the rare times I am sick.
    Fact:  I am half-way done typing my first manuscript for Part I of my Gospel-driven Dicipleship Manual. 

    Fact:  This is going to take awhile it looks like.
    Fact:  After graduating the United States Army Chemical Warfare School in Anniston, AL, I was assigned to a medium duty helicopter squadron stationed at the MCAS New River (NC) called HMM 261. 

    Fact:  HMM (Marine Medium Helicopter) 261 was activated April 5th, 1951 at Cherry Point, North Carolina and adopted the name of Bulls."
    Fact: During the 1965-66 tour in Viet Nam, the Bulls operated from Danang, Marble Mountain, Chu Lai, and the USS Valley Forge. The squadron continued to fly the H-34 helicopter throughout both tours, and participated in several major offensives including: Operations Starlight, Harvest Moon, Double Eagle, Utah, Nevada, Texas, and Hot Springs. During its 1965-66 tour HMM-261 flew 11,859 combat hours, MEDEVAC-ed 2,315 wounded, flew 38,090 combat sorties, ferried 47,522 troops into battle and expended 32,610 rounds of ammunition. Throughout its three combat tours in Vietnam, many of the units' helicopters were badly shot up while performing medevacs and troop insertion missions; during 1965-1966,its helicopters were hit 273 times with many aircraft destroyed. Squadron members were awarded personal decorations from the Navy Cross on down.

    In 1966, the Bulls came home to New River again. During the late 1960s, the squadron accepted their first, brand new CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters. The squadron still flies an updated model of the same helicopter, the CH-46E. Throughout the 1970s, the Bulls participated in various training exercises in the Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Caribbean regions. It was during this time that the squadron added to their nickname and became the "Raging Bulls".

     Fact:  "Righteousness and justice are the foudation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you." (Psalms 89:14, ESV)

    Fact:  I have established and written my reading goals for 2012. This of course doesn't include the books my best friends send me, or the books I blog for from Thomas Nelson, Multnomah, Banner of Truth Trust, or Tyndale. 

    Fact:  Abraham Lincoln once said, "The things I want to know are in books; my best friend is the man who will get me a book I ain't read yet."

     (Do I have any best friends?)


    Country preachers
    have always been a real hardy bunch
    but lately some of my kin folk
    like me can't keep down our lunch
    I guess its because
    I kinda got sick with a danged old cold
    I guess I went and broke the family mold

    I am very sick
    with this blasted cold
    although I've tried everthing
    it's grown big brassy and bold
    stop and think it over
    put yourself in my position
    if I keep sneezin' and puke all night long
    it's a typical prediction

    Lordy, I have loved some Nyquil
    and I have loved soft tissues
    and they both tried to help me
    in my misery
    when that wife of mine asked me
    how did you get yourself in this condition
    I said hey sweet thing please just bring
    my special prescription


    So, don't ask me Gregg
    why are you sick?
    (Gregg) why do you moan and complain
    Why must you curse that doctors name
    Stop and think it over
    try and put yourself in my unique position
    If I am sick and its my nose I pick
    It's a family tradition!

    (written by Gregg Metcalf, Nov 17, 2011)
    (to the tune of Hank Williams, Jr.'s Family Tradition)


    Sunday, November 20, 2011

    Why Translate the Scripture?

    (1494? - 1536)
     English translator of the Bible and Reformer

    "I perceived how that is was impossible to establish the lay people in any truth except the Scripture were plainly laid before their eyes in their mother tongue."

    --William Tyndale

    Friday, November 18, 2011

    On Point With God

    Our God is on a mission. God has been on a mission ever since He broke in what we know as time and space and revealed Himself to mankind. God. God created this earth with a purpose and or design and He has been "on point" actively and purposefully leading the way.Everything that God does is in accordance with His mission. There is not one thing that has taken place on this earth throughout know history that has not been used by God to further His purpose.

    What is God's purpose? What is He "on point" actively and purposefully leading the way to? This answer may come as a surprise to those of you lean more to man-centered theology or philosophy rather than God-centered theology, but it is not to make you happy,healthy, and wealthy. God's singular purpose in all that He does is to reveal Himself, in the fullness of His nature and character, in order that His nature and character would be glorified. Everything that God does, including the redemption of your soul through His Son Jesus Christ is designed to fulfill that purpose.

    God determined to reveal Himself in such a way in order that some of every people would be reconciled and drawn to Him. God invites all the people of the world to repent, come to know Him, and to worship Him. Knowing however that fallen man would never desire to come to the God of the Bible, God has designed a means by which He actively reconciles some men of every tribe, tongue, nation, and people to Himself.

    Blackaby and Willis noted: "God has chosen to reveal Himself, His purpose, and His ways, involving His people with Him as He invites all the world's people's to know and to worship Him.

    • Through Abraham, God revealed Himself as the LORD, the Almighty, and the Provider, who wants to bless all the peoples of the world through His people
    • Through Moses, God revealed Himself as the I AM THAT I AM, who plan is to show His glory to the world through His people, who are to be a kingdom of priests to all peoples
    • Through David, God revealed that His Seed would rule all nations and His kingdom would be for all peoples.
    • Through Jesus, God revealed His love and His purpose to reconcile the world to Himself through Christ's incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension
    • Through Paul, God revealed that the mystery of the ages is that He includes all (types/kinds) peoples in His redemption (emphasis mine)
    • Through John, God revealed that some from every nation, tribe, tongue, and people will worship Him forever"
    So, God is at work! God is at work at all times! God will accomplish His purpose of exalting His name, or His character and nature, as He works to draw a company of people from every tribe and nation on this earth in order to worship His exalted, glorious, and majestic character. Do not despair; God is right on time, behind everything that happens, and remains untharwted in all He does.

    Thursday, November 17, 2011

    Five Things Your Sin Won’t Tell You

    1.   Its payoff is eternal death

         “For the wages (pay) of sin is death…”  (Romans 6:23, KJV)

    2.  Although private and hidden it will make itself public

        “…behold, you have sinned against the LORD, and be sure you sin will find you out.” (Numbers 32:23, ESV)

    3.  Its Promised Pleasure is only temporary

          “…choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the  fleeting pleasures of sin.” (Hebrews 11:25, ESV)

    4.   There is no earthly or human activity that can remove its stain            

          “For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” (Hebrews 10:4, ESV) 

    5.  That when you are owned by Christ sin’s bondage is broken

        “For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.”  (Romans 6:14, 17, ESV)

    Wednesday, November 16, 2011

    Book Review: The Jesus Experiment

    Title:  The Jesus Experiment
    Author:  Bill Perkins
    Publisher:  Tyndale House Publishers
    General Subject Matter:  Christian Living, Spiritual Growth 
    First Copyright:  2011
    Type:  Paperback
    Price:  $14.99
    ISBN: 978-1-4143-1142-5

    The purpose of The Jesus Experiment is to provide the reader with a real-time connection to Jesus Christ in order for the reader is able to test His promise to give the reader abundant life. The author gives us this statement on the third page of his introduction. 

    The theme of The Jesus Experiment is encapsulated in the subtitle, "what happens when you follow in Jesus' footprints?" The thesis of this book is that the reader can apply concept of a scientific experiment by applying the concept to Jesus' claim or promise of providing His followers with abundant life.

    Perkins develops both his book and his thesis by way of argument or persuasion. Perkins provides twelve chapters as a twelve week series of exercises that centers on one major truth about Jesus each week. The author uses what he calls "four commitments" to persuade the reader that Jesus can be trusted to provide the abundant life that He promised to His followers. These four commitments are:

    Ask what Jesus felt, thought, said, and did in a variety of situations
    Observe your own responses in similar real-life situations by noting what you feel, think, say, or do when you are self-reliant
    Evaluate what you would feel, think, say, and do in the same circumstances if you were abiding in Jesus following His example
    Apply a specific plan to prepare yourself to actively follow in Jesus' footsteps the next time you encounter similar circumstances.

    The author includes at the end of each chapter or exercise a set of questions to be answered and charts to be completed on the readers progress.

    Perkins uses several real-life illustrations in which he was personally involved in order to further drive home his point. He uses past and present failures and successes in his own walk to demonstrate that the experiment or exercises work and that Jesus does keep His promise concerning abundant life.

    Lest we get to far afield and forget to inform the reader of this review, this is not another "prosperity gospel, health and wealth" book or scam. Perkins uses these illustrations, scripture references, and exercises within sound biblical exegesis in order to encourage the reader to "put Jesus to the test" in regards to the promise of an abundant life.

    I found The Jesus Experiment to be interesting. Perkins is a talented writer. The book held my attention all the way through. His illustrations are well chosen and support the points that he makes. I think Perkins was objective in his approach to the many within the church who need sound guidelines to develop their faith and trust in Christ as they growth in grace. I believe this book to be a useful tool to the audience for which is was written.

    Perkin's main argument is that the goal of Christian spirituality is for believers to become more like Christ. He proposes for example, that Peter was never more like Jesus than when he stepped out of the boat and began to walk on the water. The moment Peter took his eyes off of Jesus and he focused on himself and his surroundings he began to sink. So Perkins argues hat we are to keep moving forward in our Christian walk and growth step by step ever learning to keep our eyes on Jesus as we follow Him.

    The Jesus Experiment raises the issue of true Christian discipleship. The book suggests the possibilities that with discipline, grace, and ever growing faith a believer can follow after Christ and receive all that Jesus promised to provide for His children.

    The weakness of this book is that it tries to "pack" to much helpful material in such a small space. Perkins is barely able to skim the surface of Christian growth or maturity. However, this book is a good start for new or shallow believers. It is readily adaptable for a Sunday School or Small Group Study. It can certainly be used individually also.

    Bill Perkins is an accomplished writer. He ha authored or collaborated on twenty books. He is the founder and CEO of Million Mighty Men. Perkins has served as a pastor for over 24 years. He holds degrees from both the University of Texas and Dallas Theological Seminary. He addresses men's groups, leadership conferences, and has led chapels for major league baseball teams. Perkins blogs at

    The Jesus Experiment short two page end notes section and no bibliography. 

    In summary I found this book to be interesting, factual, helpful, and would recommend it to anyone as a good means of taking spiritual inventory. It will serve as a helpful guide to those who truly care WWJD.The concluding chapter is very convincing in regards to the benefit and thesis Perkins set out to demonstrate. 

    The principal topics are Introduction, What Jesus Did in Private, What Jesus Did in Public, and What Jesus Did With People. These main topics are broken down into several sub-divisions which support the main topic. 
    I received a free copy of The Jesus Experiment for this review. I received nothing else nor was I required to give a positive review. This review is my own thoughts and opinions. 

    Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Why Study Theology?

    "If you do not listen to theology, that will not mean that you have no ideas about God. It will mean that you have a lot of wrong ones - bad, muddled, out of date ideas." (C. S. Lewis)

    "...every Christian is a theologian..." (Bruce Milne)

    "By virtue of being born again we have all begun to know God and therefore have a certain understanding of His nature and actions. That is, we all have a theology of sorts, whether or not we have ever sat down and pieced it together. So, properly understood, theology is not for a few religious eggheads with a flair for abstract debate - it is everybody's business. Once we have grasped this, our duty is to become the best theologians we can to the glory of God, as our understanding of God and His ways is clarified and deepened through studying the book He has given for that very purpose, the Bible." 1

     The principle to grasp today is this - biblical theology or doctrine serves as the foundation and fundamental framework for everyday practical Christian living. So, let's get "jiggy" with it!

    1  Bruce Milne, Know the Truth: A Handbook of Christian Belief (Downers Grove, IL: Intervarsity, 1982), p.11 

    Monday, November 14, 2011

    Monday Facts

    Monday Facts
     is a weekly blog party
    designed to help you meet other bloggers.
     Tell us about your weekend,
     or give us some random facts.

    Share your Monday post, and link back here! ☺

    In conjunction with Seams Inspired's Party, I give you my Monday Morning Facts, for what shall we say? For your enjoyment, entertainment, encouragement, curiosity, concern, comprehension, snoopiness, wonder, amusement, to tickle your funny bone, and or your inquisitiveness!

    Fact:  Yesterday, Irene and I attended the memorial service for a friend and fellow church member. Milton Sheppa was truly a trophy of grace, blessed by God's enduring love and mercy for 106 years. Yes, Milton finally completed his race and had his spirit returned unto His heavenly father after living in this life for 106 years.

    Fact:  Seems the kids have their own plans this year and with one in Long Beach, CA and one in Mesa, AZ it seems Irene and I will be enjoying a rare Thanksgiving Day alone. As a result the menu will be simple: small turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, broccoli, pumpkin pie, and dinner rolls.

    Fact:  I will make room in my December blog for at least four of the recipes you have requested.

    Fact:  After graduation from boot camp I was ordered to attend the United States Army Chemical Warfare School at Ft. McClellan. I was one of eight Marines at a Army base and Army School in Anniston, AL.

    Fact:  Anniston was BB and MR (before brains and mature reasoning). We partied hard in Anniston, Birmingham, Montgomery, Nashville, and even Atalanta. Only by God's grace I survived.

    Fact:  The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. (PS 103:8)

    Fact:  The weekend was very quiet. Carried Irene to a few stores and then read a couple of books. Enjoyed the "kick-back" and relaxed time with Irene.

    Fact:  Mt. Solo (we live right next to the base) is absolutely gorgeous! The trees are green, orange, red, and yellow. Mt Solo is about mile long and 600 in elevation and runs east to west right along the Columbia River. Our house is about a hundred feet from the very base - we get deer, pheasant, quail, and other critters into our pasture.

    Fact: This weekend I planned all the topics for each day's blog in December.

    Fact:  San Francisco 49ers won again!

    Fact:  Lord willing, I start writing my Gospel-driven Disciples Training Manual tomorrow. I have written SOP's for the military, I have written my own Car Sales Training Manual when I managed and trained car sales persons. I think I can write a training manual for discipleship training.

    Fact:  It is time to start thinking about planning and setting spiritual goals for 2012. I need to review 2011 this quarter and then for the over all year and begin looking toward 2012.

    Fact:  If you aim at nothing you will hit it every time!

    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    Shallows and Deeps

    "In the divine Scriptures, there are shallows and there are deeps; shallows where the lamb may wade, and deeps where the elephant may swim."
    John Owen

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Follow the Money!

    Judge Judy to Prostitute:
    "When did you realize you were raped?"
      Prostitute (wiping away tears):  "When the check bounced."

    Friday, November 11, 2011

    Paper kills column saying devil makes people gay

    Gay rights groups say they’re pleased the oldest Roman Catholic newspaper in the United States has retracted an opinion column suggesting the devil may be responsible for gay attraction.

    The column in the Boston archdiocese’s The Pilot newspaper was titled “Some fundamental questions on same-sex attraction.” It was written by an adviser at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. It said “scientific evidence of how same-sex attraction most likely may be created provides a credible basis for a spiritual explanation that indicts the devil.”

    The 182-year-old newspaper withdrew the online column Wednesday and posted the author’s apology.

    'Tremendous damage' 

    The gay Catholics group DignityUSA says the column was outrageous and inflicted "tremendous damage on the souls" of gay people. The Human Rights Campaign said Thursday it's a shame the archdiocese ran a column ignoring the science about sexual orientation.

    Regardless of what DignityUSA and the Human Rights Campaign believe or proclaim, science has little or nothing to do with sexual orientation. Since the fall of Adam, mankind has been infected by a human nature that is absolutely depraved. The human nature is morally corrupt and absolutely perverted. This perversion extends itself into every area of the human nature including sexuality.

    Fortunately, this absolute depravity of every living human being does not mean that we are as sinful as we can be. Their are a number of restraints in effect which limit or hold back the level of perversity in every human being. Those restraints can be family, the church, society, the law, fear of punishment, or the Holy Spirit.

    Satan, more than likely doesn't tempt anybody to sin, exapnd on their depravity - let alone determine sexual orientation. The Scriptures seem to indicate that Satan is probably in heaven, standing before the throne of God, "accusing the brethern night and day." Granted, Satan has assigned his demons to individual Christians, but Satan himself rarely concerns himself with a specific individual.

    James, former pastor of the Jerusalem church and half-brother to Jesus Christ makes it clear in his epistle to the Jews that human beings sin because the depraved human nature entices and lures each of us by way of temptation. The human nature uses internal desires, lusts, longings, and proclivities as a fisherman uses a lure to entice us to take the lure and sin. Therefore, any sexual desire, apart from God's specific means of satisfying that desire, arises from the human nature, offers itself in an enticing and alluring fashion in order to cause the human being to "take the bait" and give into sin. 

    Thursday, November 10, 2011

    Happy Birthday to the United States Marine Corps!

    Happy 236th Birthday to the United States Marine Corps! 

    All U.S. Marines are gung-ho.  But, few can match the vision and total commitment of the famous 13th Commandant, Gen. John A. Lejeune.  In 1921 he issued Marine Corps Order No. 47, Series 1921. 
       Gen. Lejeune's order summarized the history, mission, and tradition of the Corps.  It further directed that the order be read to all Marines on 10 November of each year to honor the founding of the Marine Corps.  Thereafter, 10 November became a unique day for U.S. Marines throughout the world. 

       Soon, some Marine commands began to not only honor the birthday, but celebrate it.  In 1923 the Marine Barracks at Ft. Mifflin, Pennsylvania, staged a formal dance.  The Marines at the Washington Navy Yard arranged a mock battle on the parade ground.  At Quantanamo Bay, Cuba, the Marine baseball team played a Cuban team and won, 9 to 8.

       The first "formal" Birthday Ball took place on Philadelphia in 1925.  First class Marine Corps style, all the way!  Guests included the Commandant, the Secretary of War (in 1925 the term "politically correct" didn't exist; it was Secretary of War, not Secretary of Defense), and a host of statesmen and elected officials.  Prior to the Ball, Gen. Lejeune unveiled a memorial plaque at Tun Tavern.  Then the entourage headed for the Benjamin Franklin Hotel and an evening of festivities and frolicking. 

       Over the years the annual Birthday Ball grew and grew, taking on a life of its own.  In 1952 the Commandant, Gen. Lemuel C. Shepherd Jr., formalized the cake-cutting ceremony and other traditional observances.  For example, Marine Corps policy now mandates that the first piece of cake must be presented to the oldest U.S. Marine present.  The second piece goes to the youngest Marine.  Among the many such mandates is a solemn reading of the Commandant's birthday message to the Corps. 

       Like the U.S. Marine Corps itself, the annual Birthday Ball has evolved from simple origins to the polished and professional  functions of today.  Nonetheless, one thing remains constant, the tenth day of November!  This unique holiday for warriors is a day of camaraderie, a day to honor Corps and Country.  Throughout the world on 10 November, U.S. Marines celebrate the birth of their Corps -- the most loyal, most feared, most revered, and most professional fighting force the world has ever known.

    Wednesday, November 9, 2011

    Book Review: Culture Shift

    Title:  Culture Shift
    Author:  R. Albert Mohler, Jr.
    Publisher:  Multnomah Books
    General Subject Matter:  Apologetics, Christian Living
    First Copyright:  2008, 2011
    Type:  Paperback
    Price:  $12.99
    ISBN: 978-1-60142-381-8

    In establishing the purpose of the author, it is necessary to quote from his preface, "...we are swimming in one of the most complex and challenging cultural contexts ever experienced by the Christian Church...How are Christians to remain faithful as we live in this culture? How should we think about so many of the critical moral questions of our day?" 

    The purpose is seen in Mohler's last sentence in the preface, "My hope is that these essays will assist you as you seek to be faithful to Christ as a concerned and intelligent Christian." The purpose of this book is to assist the reader in understanding and responding to the ever changing culture in which today's believers are living.

    Theme:  The battle for the moral heart of America
    Thesis:  This is trustworthy help for developing a comprehensive Christian worldview based on timeless truth

    Mohler develops his thesis by the method of argumentation. Mohler uses the technique of persuasion to establish the truths of his thesis. The author presents twenty five components of today's culture and explores them through the means of a short essay. Mohler uses these short essays to explore the effects that these components have on today's culture and argues how the reader is to respond to them.

    Culture Shift is a very interesting book. Mohler's style of writing easily holds the reader's attention. Mohler is very objective as he identifes cultural trends and develops suggested response. This is an imporant book with a very important message for believers today. Even though each essay is very short and condensed, Mohler carefully chooses what information to convey in order to get the most "bang for the buck." These essays are of the utmost value to the reader enabling the reader, especially the Christian reader to respond in a biblical manner.

    Mohler argues that these cultural entities are not "merely academic." He states that every  believer will be touched by them at some point in his or her life-time. This is a powerful proposition with which I agree. Mohler argues that our homes are constantly invaded by the culture that is all around us. Again, I agree that whether it be through media, electronic sources, or people we work with or worship with culture changes will effect each of us. 

    Areas from homosexuality, morality, situation ethics, public schools and their agenda, abortion, character to the new American family, impact every human being, including believers requiring a response. The believer must develop a biblical world-view in order to respond in a biblical manner.

    The author is readily and more than able to address these areas of culture. Dr. R. Albert Hohler, Jr., is president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Mohler writes a popular blog is writes regular comments at He is an acclaimed and accomplished author. has called Dr. Mohler the "reigning intellectual of the evangelical movement in the U. S."

    Due to each chapter having footnotes listed within the chapter there is no end notes section. There is no index nor bibliography.

    In summary I found the book to be very interesting and compelling. The content of Culture Shift is very relevant for today's Christian. My general conclusions include a high recommendation to every believer to read this book. It is my opinion that Mohler has given the Christian Community an excellent tool with which to think about the response required to the cultural shifts in our country and community today. This book is a trustworthy help for developing a comprehensive Christian worldview based on timeless truth

    Tuesday, November 8, 2011

    America’s Most Famous Preacher Turned 93

    For the Rev. Billy Graham, America’s most famous evangelist across a career that lasted some six decades, the prospect of old age and death was for a long time something he tried not to think about, despite his convictions about the eternity that awaits human beings.

    “I fought growing old in every way,” Graham, who turned 93 on Monday, writes in the newly-published “Nearing Home,” a book that ranges from Scripture quotations about the end of life to brass tacks advice on financial planning. “I faithfully exercised and was careful to pace myself as I began to feel the grasp of Old Man Time. This was not a transition that I welcomed, and I began to dread what I knew would follow.”

    Graham’s book, his 30th, comes not only as he reaches another year, but as America’s huge Baby Boom generation moves into old age, its senior members now eligible for Social Security and retirement.

    Graham, spent most of his life as an Arminian neo-evangelical attempting to reach the multitudes for Christ by mass evangelism. Graham during his long tenue as a preacher and evangelist has "broadened" the gospel beyond its biblical limits by being a part of the dumbing down of the good news. At times it was difficult to support Mr. Graham due to his salvific and redemptive universal tendencies. You see this especially in an interview that he gave in 2006:

    "In Graham's view, the core message of the Gospel, and the love of God "for all people" should take priority..But more recent years have given him something he had little of in his decades of global evangelism: time to think both more deeply and more broadly....He.refuses to be judgmental.thinks God's ways and means are veiled from human eyes and wrapped in mystery. "There are many things that I don't understand," he says. He does not believe that Christians need to take every verse of the Bible literally; "sincere Christians," he says, "can disagree about the details of Scripture and theology-absolutely"..he is arguing that the Bible is open to interpretation, and fair-minded Christians may disagree or come to different conclusions about specific points. Like Saint Paul , he believes human beings on this side of paradise can grasp only so much.

    "Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror," Paul wrote, "then we shall see face to face.".."As time went on, I began to realize the love of God for everybody, all over the world," he says. "And in his death on the cross, some mysterious thing happened between God and the Son that we don't understand. But there he was, alone, taking on the sins of the world..I spend more time on the love of God than I used to.".. When asked whether he believes heaven will be closed to good Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus or secular people, though, Graham says: "Those are decisions only the Lord will make.I believe the love of God is absolute. He said he gave his son for the whole world, and I think he loves everybody regardless of what label they have."

    Meacham, Jon. Newsweek Magazine . 14 August 2006. Excerpt from interview with Billy Graham. .