A good kick in the ... Weekend of December 7th and 8th, 2002
Every once in a while, we, like our kids, need a good kick in the backside to get us out of the rut and going in the right direction. Pennsylvania has just passed a law making it a criminal offense for pastors to preach sermons on the horrors of homosexuality. In Pennsylvania, it is now against the law to preach "If a man lie with a man, as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them."
So, you say, oh those poor pastors, what will they ever do? Will they stop preaching the word of God or will they go to jail? What about their families? As usual, we can turn to the word of God and find our answers. For in God's book, the Holy Bible, He has told us all things that will happen and more important why they happen.
Afterward Jesus appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen Him after He was risen. And He said unto them,
Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen. (Mark 16:14-20)
So, Jesus comes to His Apostles, the eleven that were true to Him and gave them a little kick in the backside because they had been moaning, groaning and just laying around not doing much in the way of furthering the Gospel. So first He gives them their marching orders Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. Then He tells them why they are to do it, He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And then He tells them not to worry while in places of danger doing His work for, In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
So, immediately after telling them what to do, So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And His faithful eleven, went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.
But, it wasn't long before they got comfortable in their little churches, comfortable with their congregations, and unpacked their bags, moved into the parsonage and settled in. While they were throughout all the lands of the Jews, they were not going into the Gentile areas, the vast majority of the world. First God gave them warning by causing a bit of persecution to afflict them in Jerusalem, Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison. But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, "Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life." (Acts 5:17-20)
And still they remained in Israel and Judea, so, God gave them another little kick in the backside, the persecution got worse, And cast Stephen out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, and Stephen, calling upon God, said, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, "Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep". (Acts 7:58-60)
As the persecution got worse, remember, what Jesus had told His eleven, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only.
And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spake unto the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord. (Acts 11:19-21)
Well, it seems that preachers here in the good ole US of A have become a little complacent about going into the prisons and preaching, they have gotten comfortable in their parsonages, comfortable with their congregations. So, it would seem the Lord has given them a little kick in the backside. And as usual, the Lord has used the heathens to raise the boot. So, in Pennsylvania, the prisons may be full of Bible preaching preachers.
Picture this for a minute if you would:
We have Joe the mass murderer, Larry the serial rapist, Harry the embezzler, Bill the traitor and Warren the preacher. They're sitting around in the rec room having coffee and looking some what bored, when Joe the mass murderer ask Harry the embezzler what he's in for. Harry in a somewhat bragging tone says, "I embezzled nine trillion dollars."
Joe the mass murderer looks over at Larry the serial rapist and says, "And you, what are you here for?" Larry looks over at him and says, "I raped more women than Harry stole dollars." "I'm impressed says Joe, as Harry and Bill the traitor let out a sigh signifying their respect.
Then Joe the mass murderer looks over at Bill the traitor and says, "I know you, what are you here for?" Well, says Bill the traitor, "I was president and sold a bunch of stuff to the commies, but then my flunky, Algore, lost the race for president, George Bush got in, kicked my new progressive communist party apart two years later and had me busted and tried. But before that, I raped more women than Larry here and stole more money than our buddy Harry the embezzler. And you, what did you do?" Joe the mass murderer says, "I killed almost as many men and women as you did, got me sixty of them."
As each of these hardened criminals, a murderer, an embezzler, a rapist and former president turn their stares slowly, they focus on Warren the preacher. "What about youse, what are you in the big house for?" they collectively ask Warren. Now Warren who while in his mid seventies had been preaching for close to half a century, a small man, about five foot five and weighing no more than a hundred and twenty pounds, yet full of the Holy Spirit of God looks at them and says.
"There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: Nicodemus came to Jesus one night, and said unto him, 'Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do the miracles that Thou does, except God be with Him.'
Now, Jesus didn't turn around and thank Nicodemus for his vote of confidence nor his compliment, but instead said to him
'Nic, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.'
Then, Nicodemus said to the Lord, 'How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?'
And Jesus said to him, 'Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.'
Then as Nicodemus sat at the feet of Jesus, the Lord said:
'As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.'"
As Joe the mass murderer, Larry the serial rapist, Harry the embezzler and Bill the traitor sat silently and looked on, Warren continued by saying,
"You see God has more love for us than any of us is capable of imagining, His love for us is so great, that regardless of what we have done in the past, if a man goes to the Lord on bended knees, confessing that Jesus is God and admitting that he himself is a horrible sinner unworthy of salvation, while at the same time beseeching the Lord's forgiveness and giving himself to the Lord wholly, unconditionally and without any reservations, that man can and will be forgiven of everything he has done in the past.
God also has certain rules. And some of these rules can not be broken. One such rule is that God condemns the act of homosexuality and insists that His preachers preach His word, His plan of salvation and His rules from the pulpit. But, here in Pennsylvania, if a man of the cloth follows the orders of God and preaches God's rules against homosexuality, that preacher will find himself in prison.
So, to answer your question asking why am I here, I am here for reading from God's book, the Holy Bible, these words " If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them." from the pulpit to my congregation."
As Bill the traitor snickered, Joe the murderer looked up, and with a tear in his eye, said "Can I be forgiven? what must I do to be saved?".
While the politicians of Pennsylvania mean this law for evil, God can and will make good of it. While satan, his minions and his ilk mean this law to quiet the Gospel, God will turn this meager act of mankind into a great revival. For His will, will be done, in earth as it is in heaven. For God is in control and is the Creator of all things.
Pray for the preachers in PA, my brothers, ask the Lord to give them strength, for while I go into the prison as a visitor, they will be their as inmates.
Pray also for our troops, today is the day saddam, the not to be trusted, is to turn over to the un his list of lies, I have the feeling that this President will not buy much more garbage from saddam and the other terrorist supporters and financiers. I would ask you to pray first for the salvation of all our troops and the Lord's guidance for the commander in chief and then His protection on them and us.
Lord, Thou knowest all things, things here on earth are getting more and more confusing, I would ask Thee Lord to watch out for us and ours.
God blessed America when she feared Him, now it appears, she may face His wrath.
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