Bio

Dr. Mike Halsey is the chancellor of Grace Biblical Seminary, a Bible teacher at the Hangar Bible Fellowship, the author of Truthspeak and his new book, The Gospel of Grace and Truth: A Theology of Grace from the Gospel of John," both available on Amazon.com. A copy of his book, Microbes in the Bloodstream of the Church, is also available as an E-book on Amazon.com. If you would like to a receive a copy of his weekly Bible studies and other articles of biblical teaching and application, you can do so by writing to Dr. Halsey at michaeldhalsey@bellsouth.net and requesting, "The Hangar Bible Fellowship Journal."

Comments may be addressed to michaeldhalsey@bellsouth.net.

If you would like to contribute to his ministry according to the principle of II Corinthians 9:7, you may do so by making your check out to Hangar Bible Fellowship and mailing it to 65 Teal Ct., Locust Grove, GA 30248. All donations are tax deductible.

Come visit the Hangar some Sunday at 10 AM at the above address. You'll be glad you did.

Other recommended grace-oriented websites are:

notbyworks.org
literaltruth.org
gracebiblicalseminary.org
duluthbible.org
clarityministries.org

Also:

Biblical Ministries, Inc.
C/O Dr. Richard Grubbs
P. O. Box 64582
Lubbock, TX 79464-4582

Friday, April 20, 2018

MY EXCLUSIVE CLUB III

To state the truth: I am a member of what is and what will be the last Christianized generation in American history. It was my generation that had the blessing of being soaked in a Christianized culture that permeated everything from education to entertainment. Such soaking was a blessing not appreciated appropriately at the time, but as time races on, I do appreciate it more each day.

TURNING THE TABLES

Now, let's turn the tables and look at a youth raised without the blessings I and my generation had and examine the life of a girl raised in culture rigorously soaked in atheism, a culture in which the Bible is blocked at every turn and the state is sovereign.

Here, in her own words, were her growing up years in North Korea.

"I was taught never to express my opinion, never to question anything. I was taught simply to follow what the government told me to do or say or think. I actually believed that our Dear Leader, Kim Jong Il, could read my mind, and I would be punished for my bad thoughts. And if he didn’t hear me, spies were everywhere, listening at the windows and watching in the school yard.

"We were ordered to inform on anyone who said the wrong thing. We lived in fear. In most countries, a mother encourages her children to ask about everything, but not in North Korea. As soon as I was old enough to understand, my mother warned me to be careful about what I was saying. ‘Remember, Yeonmi-ya,’ she said gently, ‘even when you think you’re alone, the birds and mice can hear you whisper.’

THE RADIO, THE TV

"Radios and televisions came sealed and permanently tuned to state-approved channels. If you tampered with them, you could be arrested and sent to a labor camp for re-education, but a lot of people did it anyway. In the border areas those of us with receivers could sometimes pick up Chinese broadcasts. I was mostly interested in the food commercials. My friends and I would watch these incredible things, but it never really occurred to us that our lives could be any different.

THAT MOVIE

"My uncle Park Jin had a VCR, and when I was very young, I would go to his house to watch tapes of Hollywood films. My aunt covered the windows and told us not to say anything about it. I loved Cinderella, Snow White and James Bond. But when I was seven or eight years old, the film that changed my life was "Titanic."

"I couldn’t believe how someone could make a film out of such a shameful love story. In North Korea the filmmakers would have been executed. No real human stories were allowed, nothing but propaganda about the Leader. The idea that people could choose their own destinies fascinated me. This pirated Hollywood film gave me my first small taste of freedom."

THE PHYSICAL, BUT NOT THE PSYCHOLOGICAL  ESCAPE

She escaped when she was 15, but her mind was still captive to the Great Leader. One day in school, after her escape, the teacher asked her to tell the class what her hobby was. She couldn't answer because she didn't know what "hobby" meant. In North Korea, every thought and activity was to be occupied by the state and its leader. There was no such thing as a hobby and no word for it. When there is no word for something, you can't think about it.

THE BOOK

Later, she was asked to tell the class her favorite color; she couldn't answer because the thinking of the North Korean was brainwashed to be "We," the group, the state, not "I," the individual. "I" don't have anything; the state does. One of her most eye-opening moments was when she read Orwell's "Animal Farm" and it hit home.

There was no prolonged electricity in her home; it was on again, off again, mostly off. Running water was a sometime luxury and there was little or no food because of government-produced famines; most of the food went to the powerful leaders. A special day for her was noodle day, when her mother made noodles. But often there were not enough noodles to share with others.

From time to time, she would come across bodies in the streets, either frozen or starved to death, or both. The most horrific discovery for her occurred when she approached a lake and came upon a naked corpse whose face was twisted in a death agony. She knew he had died trying to get to the water, but failed.

That's the way it is, not was, in North Korea.

The last generation of Christianized Americans: we can remember back when, back then, and shed a tear for those who do not know and will never know. 


















Friday, April 13, 2018

MY EXCLUSIVE CLUB II

I'm a certified, card-carrying member of an exclusive club--the last Christianized generation in American history, which, as we've seen, means that we were soaked in Christianity. But Christianized doesn't mean "born again" in the biblical sense. "Christianized" simply means that the milieu in which we lived, moved, and had our being was heavily influenced by Christianity.

It was that Christianized culture that produced my high school class of about 400, students like Hank Still and James Ellis who went on to argue cases before the U. S. Supreme Court. In debate class class, my partner and I often debated with Hank and his partner. Hank was skilled in debate and his talent has stood him in good stead over the years. James was in my high school and college Latin classes; He played football for both institutions (whoever heard of a starting quarterback taking Latin in high school and college?) He was also a Rhodes Scholar finalist. On the baseball team, he was the premier pitcher, the quintessential student-athlete.

The girl who sat in front of me in high school Latin, Carolyn Dean, would grow up to handle and study the rocks taken from the surface of the moon. Within our ranks would be those who would become college professors, like John Moeser and Mike Moorehead.

One girl, Kay Thornton, the editor of our school newspaper, "The Monterey Mirror," would move to Canada and become an author of published fiction, while another would write a book about the famous Lubbock UFO sightings, which became known in the national press as "The Lubbock Lights." (I saw them one night.) My classmate, Arthur Neill, was so brilliant in the third grade, he corrected our teacher's spelling of "encyclopedia;" he would grow up to become a radio astronomer, in Boston. The last time I saw Arthur, he and his wife were flying to Europe.

THE DRESS CODE

If there was a high school dress code, I don't remember its being in print nor any instructions given orally about it. The school didn't have to have one because a dress code was enforced at home before we left for school. The dress code had one rule, "You don't embarrass your parents." End of the code.

Parents enforced that code and didn't expect the school to do it; such would have been unthinkable. In that regard, there were no T-shirts whereby we could announce how special we were such as the young lad wearing a shirt I saw today which proclaimed, "HAVE YOU NOTICED MY AWESOMENESS?" (I wanted to tell him, "No.")

Back then, parents may have thought their children were special, but they didn't expect others to do so and they didn't bore others by bragging about their children. Such would have been considered gauche.

LUNCH-A-LOT

When lunch time came around, we ate in three different shifts: there were lunch periods A, B. and C, with A as the earliest and C the latest. For some reason, praise be, I never was assigned the C lunch period. With only three periods for lunch, that meant there were a lot of us eating in the cafeteria at those times. The teachers had their own separate lunch room where they would dine and, in my opinion, spend their time plotting against us.

There was only one spontaneous outburst in the cafeteria during my years in high school. Unbeknownst to me and the others at our lunch table, there was a group in the cafeteria which was watching the clock, and when the time hit a certain hour and minute, they burst into enthusiastic applause. At our table, we looked at each other, wondering what in the world was going on.

Then my good friend, Jim Smith, figured it out--it was May 2 and, at that precise moment, was the appointed time for the execution in San Quinton Prison of Caryl Chessman who had gained national infamy for his crimes and 8 stays of execution. (His picture was on the cover of "Time Magazine.") He had become the poster boy for the anti-capital punishment movement in America. The group was applauding because the time had come for execution to commence.

But before lunchtime was over, Jim had figured out something the applauding group had missed--the time difference between Central Time and Pacific Time. Their applause was premature by two hours, but we thought it was a nice gesture. We were up on current events and issues back in the day. 

In all my years spent in the cafeteria, there was never an incident of unruliness or an outbreak of an untoward argument. Everyday, in every way, world without end, the we ate together in peace and calm in an orderly manner and cleaned up our table when we were through. 

THE QUICK FIX

So, since we're partial to shortcuts, we think, "To produce a milieu such as that, let's study those days, take what they did and impose their code on our schools today and then we would have such a culture as they did--one that's disciplined, educated, and respectful of authority. Let's impose the demerit system just like Monterey Senior High School had, and, just like an assembly line, we'll turn out respectful, disciplined, moral, and dependable  citizens just like schools did back in those halcyon days.

IF ONLY

If only it worked that way, but it doesn't. To impose such systems as were in vogue in the days of My Exclusive Club is appealing, but the results would be appalling. The reason for that is that it wasn't the systems that produced the Christianization; the Christianization, produced the systems.

THE CART IS NOT TO BE PUT BEFORE THE HORSE

In other words. the spiritual engine (the Christianization) in place at the time produced the systems that came into being. It wasn't the other way around where the systems produced the engine. To say it another way, it was the Chrisitanizing, the soaking of the culture in Christianity, that produced My Exclusive Club; no demerit system, no courses in English and Latin and algebra did it. The rigorous discipline system and curriculum came out of Christianity; they didn't produce Christianity.

The engine that produced the culture was based on the concept of absolute truth in which we were soaked. Back in the day, we were taught that there was right and wrong, a morality which was absolute. To be absolute, such a code has to originate outside of man and be something man can't arbitrarily change depending on what he wants to do. Whether we could articulate that concept or not, it was in the air we breathed.

My Exclusive Club was raised that way, taught that way, and lived that way, Christian or not.

TO BE CONTINUED 

  



Friday, April 6, 2018

MY EXCLUSIVE CLUB

I'm a member of an exclusive club, one that admits no new members. This closed club requires no application fee to join and has never had any dues to pay. The club has no meetings and, in fact, has never met. If you're not already a member, you can't join--that sums it up.

UNIQUE

What club is this? It's not an organization that I joined because of any merit or achievement I garnered, earned, or was awarded. It's a club based on birth. It's made up of my generation of Americans: I am a member of the last fully Christianized generation in America, and sad to say, there will never be another like us.

What I mean by that is not that all members of my generation are or were born again, but that my generation is the last to be heavily soaked and influenced in the culture which Christianity produces that we can say that my generation is the last one to have been so blessed, so "Christianized."

MRS. NELSON AND HER RECORD PLAYER

Allow me to give you some examples of the Christian soaking we received. In the second grade, Mrs. Nelson was our teacher. Mrs. Nelson taught us all subjects from math to music. There is one and only one thing I remember from the music she taught us. One day she brought out the record player and played a song for us. It was "The Lord's Prayer" set to music. You've probably heard it, but not like we club members did; we heard it in a public school, Dupre Elementary School, to be exact.

In each elementary school in the city there was a special day for all 5th graders. It was the day representatives of the Gideons came and presented every 5th grader with a Bible; we were proud to receive that little New Testament. I carried it around in my back pocket.

LOVE AND MARRIAGE

Divorce? There was no such thing in my experience, with one exception. I only knew one person, just one person, all through elementary school, junior high, and high school whose parents were divorced. Just one. Marriage was forever in this life. That's the way it was in a Christianized society back then.

THE PUGILISTIC ARTS

Speaking of high school, there were around 1,300-1,400 students in mine. My senior class was over 400. During my years traversing those secular halls, none of us ever saw a policeman in the building, "resource" or otherwise, and I never saw one fight inside the school building or on the school grounds.

DISCIPLINE

Teachers maintained order by a demerit system. A student would receive one demerit if he was late to class or if he talked during class or if he ran in the halls or chewed gum, things like that. The most demerits in one whack a teacher would give a student were five, and that was for being absent without excuse or some exhibition of direct disrespect. I never saw any exhibition of direct disrespect, not once, not ever. Verbal disrespect sometimes reared its rebellious head, but it was in a private conversation, in hushed tones.

The reason that the demerit system kept us in line was simple: anyone receiving more than 10 demerits in a semester had to come to school on the last Saturday of that semester and endure an 18 weeks' written test in every subject he was taking--English, algebra, history, every subject. The grades on those tests would be factored into a student's final semester grades in each subject.

I went though high school having received one demerit. That was good because I couldn't have passed an 18 week's test in any subject. Only Robert E. Lee and Charles Mason have better records than I; they graduated from West Point with no demerits. Both graduated in 1829; Mason was first in his class; Lee was second.They bested me there too; I was so far away from being number one in my class, that my ranking wasn't listed to save embarrassment.

Another factor in the Christianized atmosphere was the dreaded paddle. Our P. E. instructors (the coaches) had their own and used them when the need arose. Each teacher's paddle was "The Board of Education" that got to the seat of the matter. One typing and business teacher had her own paddle and wielded it with a mighty hand.

STARTING THE DAY

At the beginning of each school day, there was "Morning Watch" during which someone from one of the local churches spoke to those who assembled in Room 143. (There's a picture of them in my yearbook with heads bowed and the words at the bottom of the picture call them, "The Watch Worshipers.") Each home room had a Morning Watch representative who would report to us and encourage us to attend. (The representative from our homeroom was Martha Nelson, a friend with whom I still have occasional contact.)

THE YEARBOOK

Also in my yearbook is a picture taken around Christmas time of a group in the drama class. They're practicing for a Christmas play and they're dressed as shepherds, kneeling at the manger. Also in that yearbook the writers printed a quote from Genesis, attributing it to "Genesis 13:8" from the King James Version.

THE BIBLE COURSE

One of the electives taught in my high school was "Bible." The first semester was the Old Testament, the second semester was the New Testament. We made maps of Israel. We made maps of the Roman Empire in the second semester. We studied the life of Christ and the journeys of Paul. We typed each lesson on onion skin paper and at the end of the year, many of us had our collection of the lessons on that paper bound into a rather large book. I still have mine. Somewhere.

THE CLUB GATHERS

We enjoyed weekly assemblies. One of the assemblies featured a speaker from the military. I think he was of a high rank. This was during the Cold War and he spoke to us about the Russians. I remember two things he said: "The Russians are barbarians with nuclear weapons." We had no problem with that because he was telling the truth. America was superior to those atheists and we knew it.

Then he showed us a slide show ("slide show" sounds archaic; there was no such thing as Power Point). One of the slides was a picture of a Russian woman doing hard manual labor repairing a Russian street along with a small group of men. We immediately laughed, because this was strange to us to see a woman out in the cold with a shovel doing pavement work. To us, that was men's work. Then he told us, sarcastically, "Don't laugh. This is what the Russians call, 'Equal rights for women.'"

We laughed again.

A PEP RALLY

The club had a hatred; it ran deep in our veins and was directed toward the rival high school. At the pep rally in the gym before the big game, the cheer leaders executed our rival's star player in effigy. It was great fun; nobody thought it anything to do with real life. Later, our team won the game.

THE CROWNING TOUCH

The capstone example of our Christianized generation occurred in my Latin class. Our teacher, Mrs. R. P. Johnson, had told us translate at our desks from the textbook, and as we did, she went from desk to desk to help anyone who needed it. When she came to one student's desk, he was having a problem because he didn't know the meaning of a word. It was the Latin word, "redempto," which means "buy back."

The rest of us, diligently working at our desks, could hear Mrs. Johnson as she helped him, and we all heard her when she explained to him, "That word means 'buy back,' we get our English word, 'redemption' from it. That's what Christ did for you, He bought you back."

No student raised an eyebrow and I doubt that any student reported to their parents what Mrs. Johnson said because what she said was a normal thing to say for our Christianized generation. We were used to hearing it. We were soaked.

THE EDUCATION OF THE CLUB

Recently a man who was a substitute teacher said that he was examining the small library in his classroom and came upon some textbooks from the era of our time in high school. He said he was amazed because they would be considered college level textbooks today.

We received an education, a real education. One college professor told me that those students from my club came to college knowing English grammar. (For example, we wouldn't say, "I hope you don't mind ME parking there." We knew better. We would properly say, "I hope you don't mind MY parking there."

We memorized a hundred lines of poetry a year, wrote and presented orally four pre-approved book reports a year, diagrammed sentences, took vocabulary tests, and we knew direct and indirect objects when we saw them.

One other thing: we didn't think were and we still don't think we are anything special. Nobody told us were the greatest; we didn't wear T-shirts announcing how wonderful we were. We were just kids going through the public school system back in the day. We were normal.

This trip down memory lane has been for a purpose: next week, we'll take a look at what it means to our society that my generation is the last of its kind, the last Christianized generation in American history.

TO BE CONTINUED

Friday, March 30, 2018

A FRENCH RESURRECTION

Voltaire was an 18th century French philosopher and deist who rebelled against the corrupt Roman Catholicism of his day. But lest we think of him as someone who would agree with Martin Luther who opposed Catholicism based upon New Testament doctrine, Voltaire wanted to break Catholicism's hold on people by attacking New Testament doctrine.

AN EARLY VERSION OF DAN BROWN

He attacked the doctrines of the Trinity and the deity of Christ. In his opposition to the deity of Christ, he conveniently overlooked the fact that from the earliest writings of the faith, Christ was declared to be God in the flesh. Voltaire promoted the false idea that the church, over hundreds of years built Christ up to become God incarnate.

 Voltaire also overlooked the fact that the church councils which met about the deity of Christ did so because His  deity was being attacked, not to "make Him God." Those meetings affirmed the doctrine of His deity; they didn't manufacture it nor vote it into existence. They convened to refute by a formal statement those who said He wasn't.

IMMORAL MOTIVATION?

Perhaps there was a hidden motivation in Voltaire's attack. He didn't like the high ethic of Christianity. Henry A. Stimson, writing in 1904 said:

"[Voltaire's attack] is by common consent the most unspiritual, immoral, and irreligious of them all. The 'infamous thing,' as he termed it, against which his main assault was dealt, was simply continence and chastity. To him chastity was the mystic key of the Christian holiness.  

"Voltaire and his friends held that chastity is no virtue at all, but generally an impediment to free human happiness. This, in the testimony of the historian to-day, is the underlying motive of the line of attack upon Christianity which has never ceased from that time to this, and has lost none of its virulence."

VOLTAIRE, THE MAN OF REASON?

Voltaire furnishes us with a classic example of the unreasonableness of unbelief when he wrote: "If in the market of Paris, before the eyes of a thousand men and before my own eyes, a miracle should be performed, I would much rather disbelieve the two thousand eyes and my own two, than believe it.”

A FRENCH EASTER

Voltaire was a member of the Lodge of the Nine Sisters, named in honor of the mythological muses, a Masonic Lodge in Paris. It was a lodge consisting of the so-called "free thinkers," the greatest writers and artists. When Voltaire died, the Lodge of the Nine Sisters held a memorial service for him a few months after his passing.

They draped the lodge in black, using only candles for its dimly lit illumination. They sang songs and gave speeches. Then a flame of light revealed a painting of Voltaire called an apotheosis which is
the elevation or exaltation of a person to the rank of a god. The artist had depicted Voltaire emerging from his tomb to be presented in heaven by the goddesses of Truth and Benevolence. 

Then a member of the lodge took the Masonic wreath from his head and solemnly laid it at the feet of the painting. That man was Benjamin Franklin. (from Benjamin Franklin: An American Life by Walter Isaacson)


 SUCH IS THE WAY OF FALLEN MAN

Such is the way of fallen man, who, in his rebellion, continues to believe the lie of the serpent in the Garden: "You shall be like God." Man continues to seek to deify himself and others, a deification which will culminate in the anti-Christ who will demand the worship of the world.

The culminating book in the Bible has a detailed word for those who hold to the apotheosis of any man: "From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.” (Rev. 19)




Friday, March 23, 2018

BIBLIOPHOBIA

Eun, is a third-grader. Her teacher is giving the class a special assignment. She tells the students that their assignment is to go home and look for a book, and if it’s the right book, the student(s) will be honored. Eun goes home and finds a Bible and brings it to class the next day.

 For finding the right book, Eun receives a prize. When she returns home that day, her parents aren’t there.

If Eun's parents were typical of Christian parents who are brave enough to share their faith with their children, or extended families, they would have gathered in the darkened back rooms of their homes and whisper their prayers and hymns. Often their Bibles are scattered pages to disguise what it is.

Eun lives in The Hermit Kingdom, the country which "Forbes Magazine" calls the most hostile nation to Christianity on this fallen planet--North Korea, also called, "The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,"

"orbes" reports: "Christian parents try to hide their faith as far as possible to avoid arrest and being sent to a labor camp. Thus, being Christian has to be a well-protected secret, even within families, and most parents refrain from introducing their children to the Christian faith in order to make sure that nothing slips their tongue when they are asked.”

WHAT'S SO TERRIFYING ABOUT THE BIBLE?

"Forbes" hits the nail square in citing the reason for The Hermit Kingdom's bibliophobia: it's because the Bible reveals that one's loyalty to God is to come before loyalty to the North Korean state. No tyrant can tolerate such a belief because, with such a truth, no state can remain totalitarian.

TOTALITARIANS INSIDE THE GATE

Something is going on in higher education, not in The Hermit Kingdom, but here at home. Totalitarians are inside the castle. They were once outside the gates, but now they're in.

One of my college professors had an excellent pedagogical philosophy: he encouraged questions and he encouraged us to voice our opinions with which he might disagree. We could do so as long as we were respectful and weren't trying to waste class time, or take up time with endless speculations, and weren't off the subject or trying to show off. He later told me that he had this philosophy because it made him think when students respectfully challenged him with good questions or excellent statements. (Now, that's a teacher with a capital "T.")

THAT WAS THEN, THIS IS NOW

But it would seem that the academic landscape has shifted and my exemplar of a teacher with a capital "T" in higher education is long-gone. And it shifted without any opposition. It was as if the barbarians entered the gates and found no one to defend the castle. There were no administrators and no parents to guard the youth from what the Huns and the Vandals wanted to do to the groves of academe`.

Recently, in a university in the Keystone State, a teacher of theology was lecturing the students about the now hot topic of gender. It must have been an odd theology class because none of my extensive systematic and biblical theology classes informed us about gender back in the days of yore. (What is "yore" anyway?)

One student who either knew Genesis 1 or biology, or both, raised his hand to observe that there were two genders. (Back in the days of yore, this would have been like raising one's hand in advanced trigonometry and opining, "2+2=4.")

For this statement of what's obvious to 99.9% of any population anywhere in the world, the teacher expelled him from the class with the admonition, "And never come back!"

The expulsion triggered an inquiry and the usual official formalities until the president of the school stepped in and reinstated the student who was out of step with the thinking of the Hermit Kingdom of the Pennsylvania university. But think about this: in the setting of of higher education, it now takes courage to say, "There are two genders." (!)

O tempora! O mores!"--Cicero should see us now!

We are now where Orwell said we would be--"Freedom is the freedom to say, '2+2=4," that is, freedom means you can state reality, the obvious.


Friday, March 16, 2018

DAD? DAD? DAD?

"For many, immaturity is an ideal, not a defect."........Mason Cooley

There are no parents in sight of the 60,000 youth at South Padre Island, Texas. The situation is so bad, they need a 32-bed mobile hospital. In one day, there are more than 60 casualties, at least 15 of those because of drugs. Among them is a girl of 19 who ‘freaked out’ while on Ecstasy. Dozens more, many of whom are underage, have drunk too much and have either passed out or collapsed in the arms of medics. One medic, a veteran says, "I've been in Iraq; this is worse."

The legs of a teenage girl won't work; she's drunk. Two policemen grab each of her arms and begin to drag her away. A kid named Brady bites off the head of a hamster. One person is shot and killed. Fifty arrested. Pictures of the events can't be published published because of obscenity laws.

 In Miami, 4,000 of the sunburned, the drunk, and the drugged take over the city streets. Traffic isn't moving. Police don't have backup and are afraid to intervene. One resident says, I’ve been here 30 years, and I’ve seen everything. From my window, I see stabbings that precipitated murder, public defecation, fights, hit-and-runs. I see sexual assaults. I’ve seen everything you can imagine — stuff that shouldn’t be seen on the public right-of-way,"

WHAT'S GOING ON?

It's spring time and spring means "Spring Break," a time when there's not enough police to maintain order, a time of hedonism, moral relativism, and debauchery on a grand scale among teens and 20-somethings. It's a time for the morally immature. They fly in and drive in by the thousands to the beaches of the southern United States for their yearly worship of Bacchus. They stay in hotels, imbibe in immorality at the clubs until 5 in the morning; they eat at restaurants during four or more days of a revelry that would be the envy of Nero and Caligula.


"During spring break, the average male reported drinking 18 drinks per day and the average woman reported 10 drinks per day. More than half of all men and more than 40 percent of all women drank until they became sick or passed out at least once."
— Journal of American College Health
...
THE HEDONIST AND THE WHALE

The hedonist says, "I will do what I want to do and when I want to do it. My moral code is that there is no moral code." John Adams had a warning about that: "We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge . . . . would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other."

Our Constitution wasn't written for those in South Padre and Miami. get ready: the latest generations raised on relativism are getting ready to go through the net on a massive scale.

BUT WAIT. A QUESTION

Who's paying for the $20 million spent at South Padre? Whose dollars are going to Delta, Southwest, and American Airlines to get them there? Who's paying the bill and leaving the tip at the clubs? Who's paying the day after day, the night after night of the room service at the Hilton and the Holiday Inn?  Not these immature profligates. Mommy and Daddy are paying the bill for their daughters to run wild and their sons to chase them.

Daddy is financing the drugs and the alcohol consumption of the immature who have yet to pay a mortgage, procure car and health insurance, endure the shock of a grocery check-out bill, and who've never had to figure out ways to stretch what's left until the end of the month. Besides that, there are credit cards and student loans from which the cash can flow. Daddy can pay for those too.

These are the youth described in Proverbs 29:3: "He who keeps company with harlots wastes his father's wealth." At South Padre they burn through $20 million in a a few days. 

Which brings up a question: Are there no fathers to say, "No"? Fathers, by definition, are those who set the boundaries, those who hold up the "Stop!" signs and mean it. They mean it because they are the protectors who should be the ones protecting their sons and daughters from spring breaks. By saying, "Yes," and opening their wallets, they're putting their own children in danger.

OR MAYBE

Or maybe this is a horrendous result of there not being a father in the picture. Our culture is declaring dads unnecessary baggage anyway, so the protector, the boundary-setter, has left the building and the lives of his sons and daughters. Repeatedly Proverbs speaks of the blessing of a father who sets boundaries (3:12; 6:20;13:1) But where is the father for these, the immature?

Dad? . . ..Dad? . . . Dad?








Friday, March 9, 2018

LITTLE WORDS MEAN A LOT

There was a popular song called, "Little Words Mean a Lot." In the song was this sentiment:

Send me the warmth of a secret smile
To show me you haven't forgot
Now and forever , that always and ever
Little things mean a lot

Consider the nearly fatal fall of an Eastern Airlines jumbo jet over the Atlantic Ocean in May of 1983. The airplane with 172 people aboard plunged 12,000 feet to within 3,900 feet of the ocean. All three of the L-1011’s Rolls-Royce RB-211 engines overheated and stalled at the same time in mid-air. Why? Two careless mechanics had failed to install six tiny rubber seals on the engines’ oil plugs in routine maintenance--the O-rings. Because they were left off, the oil leaked out of the jet engines once they were cranked up. Little things mean a lot.

The Yankees lost the 7th game because on a sure double-play ball hit to shortstop Tony Kubek, the ball, the ball hit a pebble on the ground, took a wicked hop, hit Kubek in the throat, necessitating him to have to leave the game and be hospitalized, and the runners were safe. ALL because of a little pebble.

Speaking of ALL, that's a little word, but, as the song says, "Little things mean a lot." Let's go back in history to the 16th century, to a man named Theodore Beza. He came up with something new, something no one in church history, no one in the history of man and the world ever heard of. He came up with the idea that Christ died only for a relatively few people called "the elect." But this is an unbalanced view of what the Bible says.

First of ALL (there's that word again), there is no verse in the Bible which says, "Christ died for the elect." The Bible does sometimes focus on Christ's death only for those who trust Him as Savior. For example, Christ said that He came to give his life a ransom for many;" He said, "I lay down my life for the sheep." Paul said that Christ purchased the church by His blood; he wrote that "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law;" also he wrote that Christ "loved the church and gave himself for it:" Peter reported that Christ "died for our sins once for all."

It's granted that the Bible sometimes focuses on the death of Christ as being for those who believe in Him. But, that's not all (that word again) the Bible says about Christ's death. On many, many other times, the Bible relates the glorious truth that the atonement was unlimited, that Christ died for all the world. How about John the Baptist's statement introducing the Messiah as, "Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world"?

We could turn to the most famous text in the Bible, John 3:16 which speaks of God's sending His son because of His love for "the world." Or we could remember the angel's birth announcement of the Savior when he said, "I bring you good news of great joy which will be for ALL the people;" then there's I John 2:2--"and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world." In John 4:4, the Samaritans say that this One the woman who came to the well discovered "really is the Savior of the world."In II Corinthians 5:14-15, we learn that "one died for ALL." Paul told Timothy, speaking of God, "who would have ALL men to be saved."

When we go into the Old Testament, we read that ALL of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned his own way; bu the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us ALL." Not leaving it at that, Paul writes, "So then as through one transgression there resuted condemnation to ALL men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to ALL men. 

We could go on and on, but let's leave ALL of the texts which focus on Christ's death for the sins of the whole world and look at some of the results of denying it.

If a person believes that Christ died only for a pre-chosen few then that means that God has created billions and billions of people only for the purpose of sending them to hell. If a person believes that Christ died only for the relative few, and it's therefore impossible for the billions to be delivered from a fate decided before they were ever born.what does that do the love of God? If a person believes that Christ died only for a limited few, he could never, in all honesty teach his children to sing, "Jesus love the little children, ALL the children of the world."

If a person believes that Christ died only for a limited number, what does that do to the Great Commission? Such a person can't honestly tell another, "Christ died for your sins," because he has no idea if He did or didn't.