Per Fidem Intrepidus means "Fearless Through Faith". My courage isn't my own, it comes from the Holy Spirit, it's my faith in God and my personal savior Christ Jesus that calms my fears and allows me to move forward in this fallen world. Personally I'm afraid of a lot of stuff, but having the faith that Jesus adopted me as his little, sin filled, brother keeps me going.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Spurgeon Thursday - An Evil in the Camp of the Lord

The following message is commonly attributed to Charles Haddon Spurgeon, but it is actually from the Reverend Archibald Brown, a student of Spurgeon, which is probably why it sounds so much like Spurgeon that the attribution is often confused. The pulpit is no place for actors, entertainers, or performers, it is for preaching Christ risen from the dead. Nowhere does the Gospel say "Go ye into all the world and amuse every creature" (Mark 6:15) nor does it say "And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, to put a smile on the faces of the entertained" (Ephesians 4:11-12)

An evil is in the professed camp of the Lord, so gross in its impudence, that the most shortsighted Christian can hardly fail to notice it. During the past few years this evil has developed at an alarming rate. It has worked like leaven until the whole lump ferments!

The devil has seldom done a more clever thing, than hinting to the Church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them. From speaking out the gospel, the Church has gradually toned down her testimony, then winked at and excused the frivolities of the day. Then she tolerated them in her borders. Now she has adopted them under the plea of reaching the masses!

My first contention is that providing amusement for the people is nowhere spoken of in the Scriptures as a function of the Church. If it is a Christian work why did not Christ speak of it? “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, and provide amusement for those who do not relish the gospel.” No such words, however, are to be found.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

WWUTT Wednesday - Coexist?

Is it just me, or do other people feel the same way as I do in feeling that people who demand that the world "coexists" coexist on their terms, and their terms only? Name one theology that tells its adherents to "coexist" and then tells how to do it? There's only one that does:

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

9 Things You Should Know About Wicca and Modern Witchcraft

9 Things You Should Know About Wicca and Modern Witchcraft

by Joe Carter

A growing number of young women—driven by feminist politics and the #MeToo movement—are being drawn to a new brand of witchcraft, according to a report by NBC News. Here are nine things you should know about Wicca and modern witchcraft.

1. Witchcraft refers to the worldview, religion, and practices associated with using rituals that are believed to harness and focus cosmic or psychic energies to bring about some desired change. Modern witchcraft is the largest and most common subset of neo-paganism, a diverse group of religious movements that claim to be derived from historical pagan religions.

2. Within the witchcraft revival movement, the largest subset is Wicca. The 2008 American Religious Identification Survey estimated that in the United States there were about 600,000 neo-pagans, with about half identifying as Wiccan. Some estimates conclude that in 2017 there were more than 3 million practicing Wiccans.

3. In modern usage, the term “witch” is considered gender-neutral and can apply to either men or women. The term “warlock” is often considered a derogatory term as the original usage of the term meant “oath-breaker.” A group of witches who meet together regularly are known as a “coven.” Some witches believe a coven must have 13 or fewer members, though not less than three.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Random Bits

Mr. Pope makes a mockery of God's word again. Seriously, how can become chief cook and bottle washer of the top religious money making machine in history, claim to be the human embodiment of Christ here on earth, and be completely ignorant of Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:26-28, or 1 Corinthians 6:9-10?

It looks like Jesus has a part time job selling high end luxury business jets to megachurch pastors - "People like Copeland, Benny Hinn, T.D. Jakes, Joel Osteen and others who push this malignant distortion of Christianity prey on the poor and vulnerable, enriching themselves at the expense of the downtrodden."

If you wonder why Jesus castigates a wicked and adulterous generation for looking for a sign, maybe it's because you can make Christianity look stupid, like Charisma Mag does 

Trapped Kachin Christians reach safety in dramatic elephant escape

With an attitude like this, who would want to be in their neighborhood or church?

Judge rules Christian baker does not have to make gay ‘wedding’ cake

God is the creator of reason and expects humans to use it

Is Genesis a myth?

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Wretched Wednesday - The Royal Wedding Sermon Disaster

I did not watch the royal wedding, in fact as far as I'm concerned the enchantment of anything royal ended in 1776. I do know several people that were agog at the worldwide display of excess by a familial dynasty built on patricide, matricide, mariticideuxoricide, fratricide, filicide, sororicide, and good old fashioned regicide. 242 years ago the "North American Union" rose up against the tyranny of a royalty run amok and gave us a new nation founded on the principles of inherent rights, government by the people, separation of powers, and not having to publicly fund fairy-tale weddings. While I hate royalty, I love England. England gave the world many things: one of the coolest flags in history, the Third and Fourth doctors, the DB-5, fish and chips, the Hitchhikers Guide, and most of all Charles Haddon Spurgeon. In return we sent them the comedic stylings of the drain circling Episcopal Church

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

6 Fitness Tips for Senior Church Members

Several (actually very many) weeks ago Jason Lewis of Strongwell.org asked if he could write a guest column centering on the health of our senior saints. Being a member of a church with quite a few folks with longevity I said "Sure!" and proceeded to allow life to interfere and his article got pushed back as much as my articles did. Here at long last is his article, and being a veteran of various forms of physical therapy I can say the advice for physical fitness for the elderly in this article is perfect. I personally like the advice on walking because I know for a fact that cardiologists set great store in walking

6 Fitness Tips for Senior Church Members

For seniors who are concerned about their physical health, they may not know where to turn for help and support. Fortunately, many seniors who are active in their churches find exactly that from fellow congregation members when they make a commitment to getting fit. From exercise groups to accountability partners, church families are a blessing for seniors who want to improve their physical health.

1. Join Group Exercises

Churches often have large fellowship halls and education wings that they can open for various classes throughout the week. And, many churches across the country are opening their doors for group exercise classes for seniors
who want to enjoy socializing, getting fit, and improving their overall health and balance. Some churches set their exercises to Christian music. Other churches focus on daily devotions to guide yoga classes, stretching exercises, and  meditation.

No matter the type of exercise being offered, seniors find that joining exercise groups at church provides them with a welcoming, comfortable atmosphere that they have difficulty finding at gyms and other fitness centers. Seniors enjoy participating in exercises with their friends from church and are more likely to attend class in their church than elsewhere.

2. Designate a Fitness Buddy

Studies show that people who exercise with a friend and have a fitness buddy stay committed and enjoy their workouts more than those who don’t. Seniors who want to get and stay fit are more successful when they have a support system because fitness buddies provide support, accountability, motivation, and perhaps even healthy competition. The key is for seniors to find a fitness buddy who motivates them and pushes them to keep going.

Churches that promote fitness buddies as a critical component of getting fit also should welcome members and non-members to participate in their group exercises and fitness classes. Seniors will feel more comfortable when they can choose their fitness buddy, and the buddy may be a non-member. And, churches have a better chance of gaining new members when they open their doors to everyone.

3. Start Working for the Church or Another Church Member

If you are a senior who likes to stay active but does not enjoy working out, you should enquire about becoming the housekeeper or groundskeeper for your church or for fellow church members at their homes. People who clean for a living bend, stretch, lift, and move quite a bit; becoming a housekeeper will keep you fit even if you don’t feel like you are working out while cleaning. Groundskeepers also find themselves getting more fit as they complete tasks such as raking leaves, using a push mower, and shoveling a walkway.

4. Invite Fellow Senior Church Members to Go for a Walk

Walking is an ideal way to exercise and get fit regardless of your age or athletic skill level. The more you walk, the more time you spend outside, and the more you will relieve your stress. Walking has been shown to stop bone mass loss in older adults, strengthen muscles, improve circulation, improve sleep, increase mental sharpness, improve balance and stability, and increase your lifespan.

If you don’t like to walk alone, invite your fellow senior church members to start walking with you. You may walk to church on Sundays when the weather cooperates, plan to walk after Sunday services, or meet during the week at a nearby park or large shopping center that welcomes walkers to get fit indoors when the weather does not permit you to walk outside. Seniors who walk in groups tend to walk a little faster and a little further than when they walk alone. If you don’t get enough interest in your walking group, advertise in the church newsletter or bulletin to gain more members.

5. Become a Mentor

To get well and do good at once, consider becoming a mentor to one of the younger members of your church. Many youth and young adults attend church because they want to be closer to God and better themselves, and having a senior member to advise them on both faith- and life-related subjects could be extremely meaningful to both of you. This kind of partnership is also a great way to get in your daily dose of physical activity: ask your mentee to go on a walk with you as you discuss this week’s sermon, or invite them to tend to the church garden with you while you explore ways he or she can work out a personal issue at home. You’ll be so engaged in your conversation and bonding that you won’t even notice you’re exercising.

6. Seek Guidance

Your mental wellness is just as important as your physical wellness. Your faith will provide you with a framework to tackle life’s challenges as you age, but being a church member also offers you great opportunities to seek counsel from others. Whether you suffer from a substance abuse problem or are simply lonely and depressed following the loss of a spouse, your pastor and fellow church members, especially Sunday school class members, will offer support, advice, and a listening ear, when needed. Sometimes simply knowing there’s someone out there who cares about how you’re doing can make you feel a lot better when you’re struggling.

Senior church members have several options when it comes to getting fit. You may want to try joining an exercise group at church, designating a fitness buddy, working for the church or a fellow church member, inviting fellow senior church members to join you for a walk, or becoming a mentor to a younger congregant.

Image via Pixabay by ZOE-Animation-Studio

Monday, May 21, 2018

How To Tell if it’s a Prosperity Gospel Church

How To Tell if it’s a Prosperity Gospel Church
by Tim Challies
The prosperity gospel is a diverse, popular, and worldwide movement that understands faith to be the instrument through which Christians can attain physical health, material riches, and divine favor. There are countless thousands of these churches around the world with various levels of adherence to the key tenets of the wider movement, yet they rarely advertise themselves as prosperity gospel churches. So how can we know if a church is part of this movement? In Kate Bowler’s book Blessed, she provides some helpful guidance.
Look for Keywords. There are certain keywords that may demonstrate an association with the prosperity gospel. The first place to look is in the name of the church since most churches have names that reflect their ethos. Words like “victory,” “abundant,” or “conquerors” provide what may be key information. Beyond the name, look at the language used either in the church’s material or in its services. In different ways these churches will emphasize their core conviction that faith is the instrument through which believers attain their desires. This leads to language like, “releasing your faith,” “speaking your faith,” or “believing God for” things. 

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Spurgeon Thursday - Thank You Charles

So much has been swirling around in my head lately, so much turmoil this year, and the year is not half done. Stepson #1's broken leg, Mom's passing, my health ups and downs, my sister's emotional trauma over mom's passing, my Stepson #2's problems, his wife and children's reaction to those problems, and my poor dear wife who can only stand firm and let the waves of adversity wash over her.

Have you ever had one of those Job days/weeks/months/years? We all have and yeah, it's tough. Sometime Proverbs 3:11-12 makes God's love bittersweet 
11 My son, do not reject the discipline of the LORD Or loathe His reproof, 12 For whom the LORD loves He reproves, Even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights.
Sometimes you just want to shout "SIR? Can you please spread the love around a little bit?" Proverbs is a great great book to follow when you're following God, and it doesn't soft pedal anything. Proverbs gives wisdom (not advice; wisdom) on matters pertaining to personal conduct, sexual relations, business, wealth, charity, ambition, discipline, debt, child-rearing, character, alcohol, politics, revenge, and godliness. But sometimes you need God's word explained to you in just a different sort of way, a way that eases your soul like Milk of Magnesia eases the knots in your stomach. Charles Spurgeon had such a gift and here, 126 years from his passing, his words give me joy that God's plan will work out:

Spurgeon, Charles, Delmarva Publication, Inc. (2015). “The Complete Works of Charles Spurgeon, Volume 78”, p.92, Delmarva Publications, Inc.                                                 

Friday, May 11, 2018

Random Bits

Looking At The Numbers: In His wisdom God gave us 10 fingers and once that fact was recognized, His greatest creation's greatest past times quickly became counting things. Blogger and Wordpress gives us bloggers lists of things that have been counted, for us. Things like the fact that last week more people in Russia read my blog than that of folks in the United States (736 to 557 page views) which is very interesting. Is it Christianity or is it English that is becoming more widespread in Russia?

I also learned that over the history of this blog some people have been accessing it using computers with a Unix operating system. That is seriously űber nerd! I can also see that Internet Explorer is still quite a thing, while Opera is hardly a thing at all, (Seriously - try Opera with Duck Duck Go, you'll thank me) and that my #1 most viewed post is still the Cult Of Furtick.

Recently Mr. Furtick's antics made me want to do a full post of on his latest comedy stand-up routine about "Sneaky Jesus" just to see if the pageview count of that entry could beat the pageview count of the Cult of Furtick. But I can't. I just don't have the stomach for that. Furtick starts off dressed in his hungover-just-rolled-off-the-couch best and opens his monologue by insulting the sovereignty of Jesus (or is he insulting the Christians that actually have READ the bible and understand the sovereignty of Jesus?) If you have the moxie to watch his undisciplined screed, ask yourself "How can someone whose coming was foretold for centuries sneak up on anyone?" Keep in mind this was brought to you by Charismamag.org, the folks who brought you the Sneaky Squid Spirit.  remember John 18:22. Most of all, keep the goats ensnared in the Cult of Furtick in your prayers that they get the message from the Holy Spirit that it's not about them, it's not about Mr. Furtick, and it's not about Mr. Furtick's money, it's about the sovereignty of Jesus, because they are not getting that message from Mr. Furtick.

Dr. John MacArthur elucidates Apostle Paul’s “characteristics of false teachers and the very works that mark them” in Galatians 5:7-12.

Speaking about Mr. Furtick and his money, it's not just real Christians that want him to tone it down, his neighbors want his satellite church to dial it back a notch also.

Hillsong Theo-eroticism

I've steered clear of the Michael Brown - NAR uproar because it seems pretty divisive to me, even though the NAR is a theological ISIS in a sheep suit. But, as Holly Pivic points out, Michael Brown is the NAR's own Baghdad Bob

Yet another "Christian" pastor has been accused of sexual misconductWith the sexual antics going on in the Roman church for the past decades (and more) the world's eye is on Christianity as a whole. Pastoral search committees and church boards need to concentrate on 1 Timothy 3:2-3 and Titus 3:7-9 because the Pastor is the the face of the church that the whole world looks at.

Mr. Pope calls for a ban on all weapons. Since he didn't specify what kind of weapons he wants banned he clearly must be talking about all weapons: guns, artillery, bombs, missiles, rockets  bows and arrows, cutlery of all forms, motorized vehicles, stones, sticks, and firm language. Unfortunately for Catholics who believe that God is not a god of confusion, Mr. Pope doesn't bother to read his own rules