Archive for the ‘Obama’ Category

Morton Zuckerman, once an avid supporter of President Obama, recently wrote this honest account of the state of affairs in America, Obama Is Barely Treading Water. I thought some excerpts would be appropriate.

“There is a widespread feeling that the government doesn’t work, that it is incapable of solving America’s problems. Americans are fed up with Washington, fed up with Wall Street, fed up with the necessary but ill-conceived stimulus program, fed up with the misdirected healthcare program, and with pretty much everything else. They are outraged and feel that the system is not a level playing field, but is tilted against them. The millions of unemployed feel abandoned by the president, by the Democratic Congress, and by the Republicans”.

He makes a powerful statement, sad but true:

The American people wanted change, and who could blame them? But now there is no change they can believe in.

Further he states:

“The fundamental problem is starkly simple: jobs and the deepening fear among the public that the American dream is vanishing before their eyes”.

To Mr. Zuckerman and most Americans, the American dream centers around money. He sums up the problem with this depressing scenario:

Many people who joined the middle class, especially those who joined in the last few years, have now fallen back. It’s not over yet. Millions cannot make minimum payments on their credit cards, or are in default or foreclosure on their mortgages, or are on food stamps. Well over 100,000 people file for bankruptcy every month. Some 3 million homeowners are estimated to face foreclosure this year, on top of 2.8 million last year. Millions of homes are located next to or near a foreclosed home, and it is the latter that may determine the price of all the homes on the street. There have been dramatically sharp declines in home equity, representing cumulative losses in the trillions of dollars in what has long been the largest asset on the average American family’s balance sheet. Most of those who lost their homes are hard-working, middle-class Americans who had lost their jobs. Now many have to use credit cards to pay for essentials and make ends meet, and they are running out of credit. Another $5 trillion has been lost from pensions and savings.

But it is jobs that have long represented the stairway to upward mobility in America. For a long time, it was feared they were vulnerable to offshore competition (and indeed still are), but now the erosion is from economic decline at home. What happens as those domestic opportunities recede? Middle-class families fear they have become downwardly mobile and have not hit the bottom yet. The financial security that was once based on home equity and a pension has been swept away.

This growing uncertainty and even helplessness over the state of affairs in America and around the world concerns me as well as Mr. Zuckerman. However, I view everything from a solid Biblical viewpoint. What I see happening does not cause me to despair, but rejoice, because the throne of God is at work.

Psalms 9 comes to mind:

The nations have fallen into the pit they made; their foot is caught in the net they have concealed. The Lord has revealed Himself; He has executed justice, striking down the wicked by the work of their hands.Higgaion. Selah The wicked will return to Sheol— all the nations that forget God. For the oppressed will not always be forgotten; the hope of the afflicted will not perish forever. Rise up, Lord! Do not let man prevail; let the nations be judged in Your presence. Put terror in them, Lord; let the nations know they are only men.Selah Psalms 9:15-20

God delights when man realizes that he is helpless. That is when we turn to our Creator God. For God says that money is not the most important thing in life, HE IS! We are to seek Him first. Our relationship with our Creator God is most important! My prayer is that our leaders will fall on their knees and come face to face with the God who reigns over the affairs of men. Perhaps then we will cease being helpless and start being reliant upon God, our strong tower!

Four thousand years ago another Leader named David came to this same conclusion during a difficult time in his life. He cried out:

“troubles without number have surrounded me; my sins have overtaken me; I am unable to see. They are more than the hairs of my head, and my courage leaves me. Lord, be pleased to deliver me; hurry to help me, Lord. Psalms 40:12-13

God was faithful to David because David was a man after Gods own heart. Perhaps our Leaders should publicly humble themselves, fall on their knees, and seek the heart of God! When the Throne of God is at work, their can be hope in nothing less.

Obama Bows

Obama Bowing or Finding a Quarter?

It was the bow seen around the world. Last week, President Obama greeted King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia with what appeared to be a bow, outraging conservatives who say the leader of the free world has no business bending over to foreigners. But the White House denies that the president bowed. A video of the greeting shows Obama significantly stooping before the 84-year-old monarch. The alleged bow left a bitter taste with many conservatives. “By bending over to show greater respect to Islam, the U.S. president belittled the power and independence of the United States,” the Washington Times said in an editorial. “Such an act is a traditional obeisance befitting a king’s subjects, not his peer.” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs addressed the issue Thursday when he denied that the president bowed. “I think he bent over with both hands to shake his hand,” Gibbs said before asking why the incident was being raised a week after it happened. When a reporter said people were still discussing the incident, Gibbs used his signature sarcasm to dismiss the claim. “I can only imagine it is of great cause and concern for many people struggling with the economy,” he said. (from FOX News’ Catherine Herridge)

A lot of people are upset at what our President did, apparently bowing to a foreign King. It really is a big deal when one “King” bows to another. Even to God. So much so that He swore to Himself that one day EVERY knee would bow before Him.

Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. (Isa 45:22-23)

every-knee-will-bowIt is such a big deal that it was repeated elsewhere in the Bible:

For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. (Rom 14:11-12)

man-bowing-before-jesusand again:

That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Php 2:10-11)

It really is a big deal when we bow before another. It not only signals respect, but when the other does not bow too, it signals submission to the one receiving the bow.

One day Jesus Christ will return to claim His inheritance. He will reign upon Mt Zion. He will claim all the Kings and nations of the earth. And at that time, EVERY knee will bow and EVERY tongue confess that Jesus is Lord. This will please the Father and bring Him absolute GLORY.

That is why the Kings of the earth are warned in Psalms:

Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him. (Psa 2:10-12)

One day soon, we all will bow. For many, it will be too late. But God swore that it would happen, and so IT WILL HAPPEN. You can take that to the bank!

clouds-over-american-economyDuring a recession, it seems there is a cloud that obscures the future, and that is the case in this recession. Gloom and Doom is the theme in the news each and every day. Everyone seems to have their own idea of what America should do. The problem with this particular recession is that it is so bad, so deep. Economists admit they don’t know what to do, because this particular type of recession has never happened before. Thankfully, we have new leadership. and our new leader has a vision which he believes is right for this particular time in America. Obama’s Vision: Only Government Can End Economic Woes. barrackobama_change_2Obama believes that only the U.S. Government can bring victory against the economic enemies that threaten America’s way of life. He is taking his vision into uncharted waters, and sink or swim, he will try to get passed the largest government economic stimulus package in history. I pray that it will succeed. But I think in the long run, it will result in further economic and political turmoil.

envision_logoI went to a workshop on the “Vision of a Leader” yesterday. It was very good, and centered upon Nehemiah and how he received his vision to rebuild the temple. One point of the session was that visions must be identifiable. You must be able to see the result, or else it is to vague and nebulous. In Nehemiah’s case, the vision was easy to see. Everyone gets excited about building things. New is was the rage in America. Entire cities of homes and shopping districts cropped up because people moved to a “new” area. At one time people were buying and selling homes like clothes. The days of “NEW” may have passed for a while. Recycle, reuse, economize, thrift, bargain, and value are the terms we now embrace in the “Deep Recession America”. They say car sales are down becasue people aren’t buying new. People are opting to keep their cars longer. Besides, the cars of today are built much better than they were. This represents a dramatic shift in the thinking of the American Consumer. “New” is out, “Value and Preservation” are in. Perhaps this will signal a change in American Moral Values. Perhaps people will return to the  Old Reliable Bible. Perhaps they will see the value of older churches, even the faith of their grand parents. Maybe we will learn that we don’t have to have “New” to be better.

At no other time in America has our leader’s vision been so important. The problem will be getting his vision through Congress. He says “no earmarks” but what will they say? The problem I see is that there are people in Congress that view their position as an entitlement. They see themselves as little ‘kings’ of their own domains. Will Obama have the tenacity to push his vision through their little ‘kingdoms’.

I have discovered that small (less than 150) churches DO NOT respond to “vision” style pastors. They are not leadership driven, in the sense of following a pastor. The reason is because the faithful people view the church as “their” church. They take ownership very personally. So a pastor may have a vision, but unless he can get his “key” people to believe it is THEIR vision, he will be frustrated in trying to accomplish it. This was really tough for me coming from the business world and owning businesses. I was use to getting my vision done. If anyone didn’t follow my vision, I fired them. I discovered that doesn’t work in churches. (No, I did not try to fire anyone!)

holy_spirit explosive blastI don’t think pastors that are filled with the Spirit and following closely after God lack for vision. What they do lack is how to get fleshly people with fleshly focus to see that God speaks to them and God expects them to follow Kingdom thinking and living too. Unfortunately there is no blast from the Holy Spirit that immediately ignites the minds of fleshly followers. A Pastor soon realizes that even his deacons and “entrenched” members sometimes follow a fleshly agenda. He will become frustrated unless he learns how to preach and teach to first of all restore to God His proper place in the church and in his people’s hearts. And then he must learn to build a consensus of vision with his “key” people. In a small church, the “key” people are those that secretly control what suceeds or fails.

Visions are great and are often the result of a special movement of God. But Pastors live in the hum drum reality of Christians who have not learned to walk in the Spirit.

mind of ChristObama may learn the hard way that Congress, even a Democratic one, will seek to control his vision. Small churches often do the same thing to Pastors. This is how America works, and someday Christ will have to rule with a rod of iron, because men’s hearts are sinful and wicked. A wise Pastor or leader must realize this when seeking to accomplish his “Vision”. Even Nehemiah had to think like a wily fox to get his people to follow his vision. Let’s pray that Congress and our churches “have a Mind to work”. With churches I pray they put on the mind of Christ. He had to lay aside all His ‘earmarks’ in order to accomplish God’s Vision. May His mind be the mind of America.

Sunday Morning I will preach a “VBS Kickoff” Sermon on Lifeway’s Outrigger Island Theme. The verse for the week is Ps 86:11: (ESV) Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. It is all about following God’s Unshakeable Truth. If you saw our church and listen to the cool songs, you would think we were off for a Hawaiian Vacation. In reality I believe we are off for a battle in the Pacific, a battle which has the hearts and souls of our children as its prize. Increasingly our Nation is moving away from the TRUTH of God’s Word.
We live in a country where people openly question the authority and truth of God’s Word. Many of you have heard the following quotation from our potential future President:

“And even if we did have only Christians in our midst, if we expelled every non-Christian from the United States of America, whose Christianity would we teach in the schools? Would we go with James Dobson’s, or Al Sharpton’s? Which passages of Scripture should guide our public policy? Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is okay and that eating shellfish is an abomination? Or we could go with Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith? Or should we just stick to the Sermon on the Mount — a passage that is so radical that it’s doubtful that our own Defense Department would survive its application? So before we get carried away, let’s read our Bibles now. Folks haven’t been reading their Bibles.” Barack Obama 6/28/2006

I have nothing against Barack Obama, but he represents the problem with Christianity today. There are too many smart, intelligent people who think they know more than God, and they think they know better what the truth is. And they are fooling many smart intelligent people.

We have something similar in Acts 13:4-12.

(NKJV) So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus. And when they arrived in Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. They also had John as their assistant. Now when they had gone through the island to Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew whose name was Bar-Jesus, who was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, an intelligent man. This man called for Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God. But Elymas the sorcerer (for so his name is translated) withstood them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith. Then Saul, who also is called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him and said, “O full of all deceit and all fraud, you son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, will you not cease perverting the straight ways of the Lord? And now, indeed, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you shall be blind, not seeing the sun for a time.” And immediately a dark mist fell on him, and he went around seeking someone to lead him by the hand. Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had been done, being astonished at the teaching of the Lord.

Obama claims to be a Born Again Follower of Christ?

Barack Obama is very similar to “Bar-Jesus” because he is using his version of the truth (pseudo-Christianity) to influence voters, especially in light of his ‘Christian Brochure’.

Obama claims to be a Born Again Follower of Christ?

In Acts 13, Elymas (Aramaic for Wise) thought he knew the truth, but he was a false prophet. He was Bar-Jesus (False Jesus). He tried to fool Sergius Paulus, who himself was an intelligent man, a man of authority given him by the Roman Senate.

Along comes Paul & Barnabus preaching and teaching the doctrines of Jesus Christ. Sergius was fascinated by this truth and was about to become a convert. Elymas (about to lose his sugar daddy) withstood them (got in their face) trying to turn the proconsul away from them.

Paul was filled with the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, who is TRUTH. Paul locked his eyes on him and spoke this truth: withstood him (got in his face) and said: “You son of the devil, you enemy of all true righteousness, you monster of trickery and evil, is it not time you gave up trying to pervert the truth of the Lord? Now listen, the Lord himself will touch you, for some time you will not see the light of the sun – you will be blind!” (Phillips)

Then Sergius believed, but Acts 3:12 says he was astonished at the teaching of the Lord.

I believe Christianity is so watered down because we have failed to teach the Truth of Jesus Christ. The truth is not just doctrine. The truth of Jesus is never meant to be intellectual and theological. The Jews had all that with the Pharisees, Scribes and Sadducee’s. Jesus stood on the steps of the temple and cried out: You will not come to ME that you might have life”. The truth of Jesus Christ will produce LIFE that can be seen by everyone. It is not just theological doctrine. Here is evidence that perhaps our way of teaching the Bible is not working.

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life between May 8 and Aug. 13, 2007, among a representative sample of more than 35,000 Americans, found the following disturbing result about “TRUTH” (see chart)

IS THERE ANY TRUTH? Even among Evangelical Christians there is doubt and unbelief about Jesus when He says I am the Way the Truth and the Life, no man comes to the Father but by Me! We have BAR-JESUS’s like Alexander McClaren & Barack Obama encouraging us to read our Bibles and yet being “OPEN” to what the Truth of God’s Word is. In fact they will tell you it is impossible to know truth!

The reason that I am so concerned about our children, and our grandchildren, is that People Walk according to the Truth they believe. If we do not know what the Truth is, then we will walk to whatever we want. Gay Marriage makes sense to someone who doesn’t believe in truth. Mercy killing makes sense to people without truth. Abortion makes sense to people without truth.

I’m afraid that even attending Bible-teaching churches that my grandchildren will grow up not knowing the truth of God because we parents and grandparents don’t know the truth of God’s way. We can quote Psalms 86:11 all we want. Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. But God has already shown us His Way. His Way is His Son Jesus Christ. We are to Walk in Him, Abide in Him.

But I’m afraid that the words of Jack Nicholson are echoing across the churches of our land: “You can’t handle the truth”

The truth is that God’s Truth is meant to Guide our lives. It is meant to be Practical, Walkable, Livable. The Truth of God will IMPACT the WAY YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE. And it is meant to impact you in Extraordinary Ways.

But when we Christians aren’t Living the Truth of God’s Word, then Truth starts to be subjective, open to your own interpretation.

2 Timothy 4:3-4 (NKJV) For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

I’m not talking about truth’s such as the Inerrancy of God’s Word, the Trinity, the Incarnation of Christ, Salvation by Grace and on and on. Those are important Theological Truths that I believe most of us share. But with Jesus it is not about Theology, it is about Livology. Jesus came that we might have LIFE, and that ABUNDANTLY!

I’m talking about Living the Life that Jesus Taught!

If Jesus is the WAY & the TRUTH, how do we Learn of Him so that we might have LIFE? The key is what Jesus told us was our Great Commission:

“Teaching them to (KEEP) observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:20).

So what were all the commands of Jesus? A survey of the Gospels will produce about 49 general commands that every believer should follow. This, then, is the curriculum for carrying out the Great Commission and being a disciple. These Commands are the TRUTH, They Are the WAY They Will REPRODUCE HIS LIFE IN US!

The Greek word translated keep is tereo, which means “to guard, to watch, to observe closely, to hold fast.” This same word is used to describe the care that the Philippian jailer was to exercise in keeping Paul and Silas from escaping.

During the times of wind-driven ships, navigators would use the phrase keeping the stars. This meant that they would use the stars to chart a course across the ocean. This is precisely how the commands of Christ are to be used: as dependable lights for charting a course throughout life.


1. Showing Our Love for Christ

“If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15).

2. Abiding in God’s Love

“If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love” (John 15:10).

3. Perfecting God’s Love

“Whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him” (I John 2:5).

4. Having God Live Within Us

“If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (John 14:23).

5. Experiencing God’s Love

“He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father…” (John 14:21).

6. Knowing Christ Intimately

“…And I will love him, and will manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).

“Hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments” (I John 2:3).

If you are serious about learning and following the commands of Christ, I suggest you enrol in the FREE Daily Success Program of daily emails sponsored by the Institute in Basic Life Principles. You can do so at Bill Gothard has done exhaustive research and application into the 49 commands of Christ. While it is geared toward men, women can enroll as well.

Churches that call themselves Christian must return to following the Commands of Christ. He is our Way, our Truth and our Life. No man comes to God but by following Jesus and His commands.