Odd as It May Seem

A number of years after I was saved, I came across the passage in the Bible where Jesus healed 10 lepers.  One returned to thank Him.  Jesus asked were there not ten.  Where are the other 9?

Since that day, I tried to make sure I thanked God for what he has provided for us, though I must admit I did have some problems being thankful for the rain on cold nights when I walked a post on guard duty.  Indeed, I had a hard time thinking of just how much we humans need rain.

I also try to remind others to be thankful, even when their baseball game gets rained out or when the camping trip is ruined by the sudden deluge.  If that farmer doesn’t get that rain, he can’t feed us.  Moreover, the water from those rains is used in uncountable other ways, including manufacturing.  It is a small matter that our lives are disturbed for the short term, even if the rain becomes a little heavy.  Naturally, the rain can become a disaster.  Floods can be devastating.

My eyes have been opened to something else for which we should be thankful.  To be sure, to most, it will seem odd.  To be sure, God disciplines His children.  It hardly seems probable that a person should say, “Thanks God.  I needed that.”  Yet we should be grateful to him for His chastisement.   If He didn’t, how much more would we would go astray.  It would be bad for us and everyone around us.

We, as humans, even punish our dogs, knowing it is for their benefit.  To be sure, we chastise them when they run into the street, that is, unless we hate them and hope they get run over.  We punish our children when they decide to put their fingers on a hot stove or into the electrical outlet.  It is not because we hate them.  It is not because we take pleasure in it.  It is far easier to ignore them.

Through their childhood, we tell our children “No,” when they ask to do things that might lead to their harm.  Certainly, it is far easier to say yes and just hope for the best.

So, maybe, the next time you think God is punishing you, You just might say “Thank you.”  You might say, “I appreciate that.”  Conceivably, you just might even say, “I needed that.”  Even if you don’t mean it, it is still the right thing to do.  Eventually, it just might change your point of view.  It has already changed mine.

Two’s a Crowd

My wife and I had just sat down to eat.  We were in a fast food place.  I won’t mention any names.  It makes no difference anyway.

Suddenly, I was glad we didn’t arrive five minutes later.  Two busses pulled up.  Likely somewhere around a hundred or so people came pouring out of the buses and into the restaurant.

In this case, I say two is a crowd.  That is to say, two buses.

The thought came to mind; what if it were a hundred buses…5000 hungry people.  Just how long would it take for a McDonald’s or Burger King to feed a crowd like that?

Yet, Jesus fed 5000 and it likely didn’t take but around a half an hour.  When we read or hear of the biblical passage, most of us look at the miracle of the food quantity and few think about the logistics.

Yet the Bible makes it quite clear how Jesus did it.  He was very methodical about it.  First Jesus had the people sit in groups of fifty.  After blessing the food, He distributed it to His disciples.  Then, the disciples distributed the food to someone each group.  Finally, the food was distributed the food with the group.

You can do the math yourself.  Each disciple only needed to distribute to five or less groups.  (50 divided by 12 is less than 5)  It would only stand to reason that whoever received the food distributed the food to seven or eight groups within the group.

Slightly, hidden within the miracle is an important object lesson.  Jesus often refers to the Word of God as bread.  It only stands to reason that if we distribute it the same way as when Jesus fed the 5000, it would not take long before it would be distributed throughout the world.

I don’t know why, but God decided to use us to distribute the Gospel.  Unfortunately, we don’t do so good a job of it.  Certainly, I am more guilty than most.  It is just so easy to let the other person do it all.  Moreover, it is so easy to think of excuses.  I know.  I have as list as long as my arm.

A Short Explanation

Some people have ask, or at least wondered why I do not call Obama, President Obama.  It’s simple.  He and Hillery are murderers.  By calling all the troops out of Iraq so quickly, he left a vacuum for killers, and he knew it.  I’m sure that it doesn’t even make it difficult for him to sleep at night.  That makes him a cold-blooded killer, a monster.  For that reason, he does not deserve the title of president and never will.

To be sure, Hillery was in concert with him and she too deserves the title of monster.

By the way, as a side note, on TV, I saw Hillery say that she is a Methodist.  She said she believes that to go to heaven, it requires both faith and works.  This is in direct conflict with the Bible which says, “By faith are you saved, not by works, lest anyone should boast.”  If she were to contribute one little bit to her salvation, she would be able to boast.  God does not like pride, so He made sure that no one in heaven will have any reason to be proud.  Besides, what makes her think she can add one little bit to what Jesus already did.  Hence, unless she changes her outlook, she will pay for every death she caused.

As near as I can tell, she won’t.  Because she has accepted the false religion, she will likely hold onto it and never accept the truth.  Because she is proud, she will never be born again.  Because she refuses to accept Jesus as her only means of salvation, Hillery will never see The Kingdom of God… ever.  That is something I don’t even wish on her or Obama, horrendous though their deeds have been.

Unbelievable Stories of the Bible

I am now 70 years of age. I find that difficult to believe, until my hip starts acting up or whenever my angina reminds me of my little heart attack. Mostly, I can’t complain. In fact, if I were born a few years earlier, I would not likely have survived the Pneumonia I had when I was three. They would not have had the penicillin and I almost died even with the wonder drug.

At any rate, over the years I have heard my share of unbelief about stories of the Bible. Maybe the one story that most people bring up is the story about Jonah and the whale. (Not that it is that important, but it was a large fish, not a whale.) Actually, if you’ll excuse the pun, I have no problems swallowing that. If God can build the Universe, I imagine He could build a whole school of big fish if He had a mind to.

Actually, I believe all the stories in the Bible, from cover to cover. However, the one I have the most confusion with is the story of Sampson. Really, the man didn’t seem to have a brain in his head. Not only did he not foresee the possibility of Delilah telling her friends, he saw it at least twice and still trusted her. I’m not going to doubt the Word of God, but it still causes me to pause to think what kind of man Sampson was.

Regardless, I have heard them all, reasons for not believing the Bible. Did you know that God caused the earth to stop spinning for a day. It’s true. He can do that. It is even more difficult than you might realize. Can you imagine the sun heating the same side of the earth for 24 hours. Yet God seemed to resolve that problem too. I don’t know how he did that. Maybe he will tell me one day. Right now, I’m not going to concern myself with it.

My point is this, if you don’t want to believe in God, you will always be able to find a reason. Satan has provided you with more than a hand full of excuses. Indeed, I have been mocked for believing the Bible. Many have been mocked far more than me.

Then again, I am sure that they mocked Noah. …until it started raining.
If you don’t want to believe in God, just admit it. Don’t make excuses. I’m not impressed with them. I’ve heard them all. I’ve heard about the starving people in Africa. I’ve seen horrible people live while good people die. It happens. It sure would have been nice if someone killed Hitler, yet he lived and millions died. I don’t try to explain it. I certainly didn’t let it stand in the way of my salvation.

It is, to be sure, a matter of perspective. People who have not accepted Jesus as their Savior have chosen not to believe. It is their choice. It is not based on knowledge or proof. It is, as Paul called the cross, “a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the gentiles (the rest of us). But to those who believe it is the power to become the sons (and daughters of God) ” (slightly paraphrased)

What I am trying to say is this. If you are having trouble believing the stories it is a small thing. If you reject Jesus as your savior, it is something you will regret for eternity. Let’s first get your priorities straight. If you do, you will find that the rest just falls into place. It will open your eyes and you will see things you never saw before and you will understand as you never understood before.

As Jesus said, “Unless a man be born again, he shall not see the Kingdom of God.” Obviously, it does have implications for after physical death, but it also applies to the here and now.  Those who are born again (accept Jesus as their Savior) are immediately granted limited spiritual sight.