Sunday, May 31, 2015

Jesus Went First

The king also himself passed over the brook Kidron. 
- - - 2 Samuel 15:23

David passed that gloomy brook when flying with his mourning company from his traitor son. The man after God's own heart was not exempt from trouble, nay, his life was full of it. He was both the Lord's Anointed, and the Lord's Afflicted. Why then should we expect to escape? At sorrow's gates the noblest of our race have waited with ashes on their heads, wherefore then should we complain as though some strange thing had happened unto us? 

The King of kings himself was not favoured with a more cheerful or royal road. He passed over the filthy ditch of Kidron, through which the filth of Jerusalem flowed. God had one Son without sin, but not a single child without the rod. It is a great joy to believe that Jesus has been tempted in all points like as we are. What is our Kidron this morning? Is it a faithless friend, a sad bereavement, a slanderous reproach, a dark foreboding? The King has passed over all these. Is it bodily pain, poverty, persecution, or contempt? Over each of these Kidrons the King has gone before us. "In all our afflictions He was afflicted." The idea of strangeness in our trials must be banished at once and for ever, for He who is the Head of all saints, knows by experience the grief which we think so peculiar. All the citizens of Zion must be free of the Honourable Company of Mourners, of which the Prince Immanuel is Head and Captain.

Notwithstanding the abasement of David, he yet returned in triumph to his city, and David's Lord arose victorious from the grave; let us then be of good courage, for we also shall win the day. We shall yet with joy draw water out of the wells of salvation, though now for a season we have to pass by the noxious streams of sin and sorrow. Courage, soldiers of the Cross, the King himself triumphed after going over Kidron, and so shall you.


- - - Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Morning and Evening

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Difference Between Women and Men

David, the great King of Israel, is celebrating one of the greatest moments of his entire reign, and the people of Israel are celebrating with him.

All except for his own  wife ... who is absolutely disgusted.  Why is she disgusted? Because men and women are different!

In chapters four and five of 1 Samuel, the Philistines have stolen Israel's holiest and most cherished possession: the Ark of the Covenant, the earthly repository of the most sacred objects the Jews possessed: the tablets of the Law given to Moses, Aaron's rod, and a jar of manna.  But the Philistines realized that this might not have been the smartest idea they ever had, when their great stone "god" Dagon repeatedly fell on "his" face before the Ark: thus showing the Philistines Who the real God was.  So, they returned the Ark to Israel, and King David brought it home.  It was a moment of unimaginable triumph and vindication and joy for the Israelites.  But not for David's wife, Michal, the daughter of Saul.  She was miffed!

And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet. And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart. And they brought in the ark of the LORD, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts. And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house. Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself! And David said unto Michal, It was before the LORD, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel: therefore will I play before the LORD  (2 Samuel 6:14-21).

Michal's disgust and sarcasm were based, not on the return of the Ark - - - she was as happy about that as any Israelite - - - but by her husband's undignified, "foolish" behaviour.  It completely ruined this great moment of victory for her. (Incidentally: although the above illustration may be pretty accurate, this wasn't, as commonly supposed, a case of "indecent exposure."  When Michal referred to David "shamelessly uncovering himself," she might well have been sneering at his exuberant demonstration of joy, his total lack of "royal dignity," and the "exposure" of his own emotions.  Michal probably thought that kings were supposed to keep their feelings to themselves.)  And God was not pleased by her reaction: Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death (2 Sam. 6:23). 

Women and men are different.  Why?  Because God made them that way.  And I mean that quite literally: it all goes back to the way that they were created.

Have you ever wondered why boys and men, as a rule, are more comfortable with dirt and grime than girls and women are?  For example, all children love to play in the mud, and little girls are famous for making "mud pies;" but, afterwards, the little girl will want to clean up (if she's older than three or four), while the boy will be perfectly happy to stay dirty for the rest of the week, unless he's forced to take a bath!  Little boys can get covered in mud within five minutes of walking out the front door; little girls play dress-up, and have tea parties.

Have you ever wondered why boys and men enjoy "bathroom humor" more than girls and women?  (Not sexual humor; these days, female comediennes are as filthy-minded as any male.) Why do little boys laugh at certain bodily noises, but little girls are disgusted by them?

Because they're made that way.  And the basic difference is this: women are, by nature, more spiritual than men.

There you go!  How's that for a provocative statement?

By "spiritual," I don't mean more "godly," although women do tend to have more of an interest in spiritual things than men; I mean that men are more "earthy," more wedded to the grit and grime of life on earth, whereas women are more preoccupied with things of the spirit.  This is no great compliment to the ladies, by the way: some of the most absurd cults on earth, from Theosophy to Christian Science, were created by women.

We've all read the creation accounts of Genesis; but those accounts have profound implications that we don't always apply to everyday life.  In attempting to understand the differences between women and men, we need to look at how they were created.

The creation of Adam: And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Gen. 2:7).

The creation of Eve:  And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man  (Gen. 2:21-23). 

It is not an oversimplification, but merely a fact of scripture: Adam was made of dirt, of dust.  Eve was made from human flesh. Their "basic materials" were different.  So why wouldn't their basic natures reflect this difference?

Males have a connection to the earth, and to the mundane, that women simply don't have, because the first woman wasn't made of the earth.  Women, having been made of flesh, are less "earthy," and more "high-minded."  I don't mean pure or noble or good: the Bible says that "high-mindedness" is not always a good thing (2 Tim. 3:4). This is a profound, inescapable difference between the sexes, and it explains a lot.

Let's go from the sublime to the ridiculous, for an illustration.  When they're in the grip of lust, why do some men find the ghastly spectacle of "female mud wrestling" to be so erotic?  They'll go to a club, and pay to see two women thrashing around in the mud; but they probably won't pay to see a women's team of synchronized swimmers.  It's because the spectacle of women in the dirt is counterintuitive: it's "sexy," to some men, because it's so unusual.  It's a perversion of the basic nature of females, whereas synchronized swimming is not.

(Female mud wrestling, of course, is merely a literal example of 2 Peter 2:22, but most men don't realize that.  And if they did, they'd probably enjoy it even more.)

As long as we're making controversial remarks, this also explains why homosexuals of either gender can never really "master" their sexual roles.  A man or woman can even have a surgical procedure (although they retain their original chromosomal structure, so there's no such thing as a true "sex change"); but they can't escape the basic spiritual and psychological nature that God assigned them.  This undoubtedly accounts for the high rates of frustration and suicide within this unhappy demographic.

Men are earthy; women are, for good or ill, more spiritually oriented. Which raises a question: why shouldn't women do the preaching and teaching?  Why are they specifically excluded from these roles?

Because, along with their inclination toward spiritual things, they are more easily deceived and confused by false teachings and false doctrine than men.  Perhaps because they're so "earthy," most men will give Benny Hinn or Deepak Chopra a well-deserved horse laugh; but many women will follow them, like lemmings, right off a cliff.   That's another lesson of scripture, and it's absolutely inviolable.  Men may be earthy, even coarse, but they're less likely to be suckered than women.  For Adam was first formed, then Eve.  And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression (1 Timothy 2:13, 14). Women, for all their spirituality, have a capacity for being deceived that men simply lack - - - although individual men are often deceived, of course.

(I should specifically state that this difference does not preclude women from serving as executives, doctors, or Supreme Court justices: as far as I can discern, it is only certain spiritual offices, such as pastor, that are off-limits for them.)

Also, women are far more prone to self-righteousness than men.  A man will recognize his sins, even if he's not spiritual, or his crimes or his misdeeds, and even joke about them: "Well, I guess I'm just not worth shooting!"  Women tend to rationalize and even deny that they've done anything wrong, if their conscience and/or the Holy Spirit doesn't stop them.  "Yes, I may have done the wrong thing, but....." 

And, of course, there's the fact that God Himself is male.  Any religion that has a female "god," or exalts a woman to the place of God (a certain group based in Rome comes to mind), is a false religion.

But that doesn't mean that men are more "godlike" than women.  In the first place, nobody even bears the Image of God until they come to Jesus Christ, according to Colossians 3:10.  (It's not true that "all people are made in God's image:" after the Fall, Adam fathered a child in his own image, Gen. 5:3, and we've been in Adam's image ever since.) But God's great plan is for all of His children, male and female, who have received Christ, to ultimately become the Bride of Christ.

Right now, we Christians are the Body of Christ; but in time, we'll become His Bride. There's no room for feelings of spiritual superiority for anybody; and, it must never be forgotten:  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28). 

But that's our spiritual standing.  Down here on the ground, the differences exist: and they're explained by the Bible, and the Bible only.  The "pop psychologists," whether Christian or non-Christian, are about as reliable as a Muslim imam.

Thank God for giving us His word, that alone makes sense of all human experience! Thank You, Father! 

Thursday, May 14, 2015

What a Surprise: Pope Francis Embraces Terrorism

It's official: this week, the Vatican announced that Jorge Mario Bergoglio, alias Pope Francis, has signed a treaty formally recognizing the fictional, imaginary "State of Palestine."  The official statement, from the Vatican website, can be found here.  Thus, to the surprise of no one, the greatest imposter in history, the Pope of Rome, has embraced and endorsed the bloodiest, most terroristic entity that has ever dared to call itself a "state."

It had to be so: the Roman Catholic Church, in its hierarchy and doctrines, is the most anti-Semitic institution in human history, and has never recognized the nation of Israel.  (There are millions of good and devout people sitting in the pews of Catholic churches, but the Catholic institution is Satan's masterpiece on earth.) Thus, it is necessary for a treaty (the old word is "concordat") to be made between the Vatican and the terrorist Mohammedans who comprise the "State of Palestine," formerly known as the "Palestinian Authority," formerly known as the "Palestine Liberation Organization."  If happiness were possible in Hell, Yasir Arafat would be smiling today.

It is no surprise when the followers of the demon-possessed, murderous pedophile Muhammad attempt to destroy Israel, which is God's nation on earth.  But it is sad, and truly disgusting, to see the largest "Christian church" on earth throw all of its reputation and resources behind God's enemies.

Of course, the Roman Catholic Church is not alone in its hatred of Israel and its support of the Philistines.  Such utterly apostate groups as the United Methodist Church and the United Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) have opposed Israel for years, and called for the establishment of a Palestinian state.  But such disgraceful and anti-Biblical behaviour is not on the same level as the Catholic "treaty:" after all, neither the Presbyterian nor the Methodist denominations are recognized by the United States government as 'sovereign states."  The Vatican is, and is even recognized as such by the United Nations.  Jew-haters in the Methodist and Presbyterian and other churches can only look at the Pope's "authority" with envy - - - and they undoubtedly do.

This is nothing new, of course.  The Roman Catholic Church has hated the Jewish people from its inception, calling them "Christ-killers" and slaughtering them whenever they got the chance (as when Pius XII joined hands with Hitler).  So, naturally, the church also hates Israel, and will make common cause with any group, no matter how unsavory, that promises to destroy God's nation. Even the "sainted" John Paul II was not above whoring himself out to the Mohammedans.

The Philistines (i.e., the "Palestinians:" listen to one of them pronounce the word) are on the winning side, at least partially, and at least temporarily.  The prophecies of scripture make it clear that there will be a "nation of Palestine" in the future, although there has never been one in the past.  It will undoubtedly stand on lands stolen from Israel. (Although it will never have full control of Jerusalem.)  But, unlike Israel, "Palestine" will not be blessed by God:

The people shall hear, and be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the inhabitants of Palestina (Exodus 15:14).

Howl, O gate; cry, O city; thou, whole Palestina, art dissolved: for there shall come from the north a smoke, and none shall be alone in his appointed times (Isaiah 14:31).

Such is the future, before Jesus Christ returns to set things in order.  When that day comes, the Presbyterians, the Methodists, the Mohammedans, the government of the United States, and all of the United Nations, will find out what "terror" really is - - - and justice.

UPDATE: On May 16, "Palestinian President" Mahmoud Abbas visited Bergoglio at the Vatican.  The Pope referred to this bloodthirsty Mohammedan usurper as "an angel of peace."  How typical. (Associated Press)

Sunday, May 10, 2015

An Unexpected Statement

Although Andrea Bocelli is one of my favorite singers, he's hardly a person from whom I'd expect to hear a deeply personal statement, especially about a hopelessly controversial issue.  But wonders never cease, and here he is.  If Bocelli doesn't have the right to an opinion on this matter, no one walking this earth does.




Mother, I am very happy
Because I return to you
My song tells you
That it is the most beautiful dream for me
Mother, I am very happy
To live far away because
Mother, only for you my song flies
Mother, you will be with me, you will not be alone anymore
How much I love you!
These love words that my heart whispers to you
Perhaps they are not used anymore
But you are the most beautiful song
You are the life
And for the life I will not let you go anymore
I feel your tired hand
Looking for my golden curls
I hear your voice and I miss you
Then the lullaby
Today your white head
I want to hold near my heart
Mother, only for you my song flies
Mother, you will be with me, you will not be alone anymore
How much I love you!
These love words that my heart whispers to you
Perhaps they are not used anymore
But you are the most beautiful song
You are the life
And for the life I will not let you go anymore
Mother, never again

See also: