LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

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Location: Phila Metro, Pennsylvania, United States

Tentmaking Evangelist (Architect). An Evangelist with the Anchor Bay Evangelistic Association (non-denominational). Co-Founder of Kingdom Gospel Ministries, a ministry now in its 31st year with a mission to reconcile people of different racial, ethnic, and economic situations, and the producer of two weekly radio programs - a Sunday morning verse-by-verse Bible Study on Radio Delaware Valley and a weekly radio drama on the Wilkins Radio network. He also has archived many, many programs on the Internet. John is also a PA/NJ Architect with his own practice in its 38th year working on a wide variety of projects. Acutely interested in politics since a teenager with many articles published over the last 50 years and served as a guest on a Talk Radio show discussing race relations and on It's Your Call TV show with Lynn Doyle dealing with the subject of interethnic marriage.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

MR. CAMPING IS NOT ALONE IN FOLLY

A whole lot of people are dismayed about Mr. Camping's folly, and probably none more than those who gave up everything to follow what to most people was an extremely far-fetched argument. My point is, how many other people dogmatically proclaim things just as foolish, and just as contrary to the word of God? People say Christ died so people could have a lot of money or that some secular person is God's man to bring the Kingdom of God to maturity. Just yesterday a woman preacher said it was Adam, and not Eve who was deceived (180 degrees from what Paul wrote in I Timothy 2:14). And she got WILD applause. We need to be centered on Christ, and stick 100% to his word, and we will be safe. Many false prophets and teachers are on the scene. Do not dignify them by listening to anything they say, even those things that tickle your ears. So many think they can pick and choose, but if a well is polluted, my friends, can you parse your drink by the drop? Jesus didn't seem to care in Matthew 24 whether they did a lot of good - heal the sick, cast out demons, you name it. He sent them to you know where. We must be 100% loyal to the Bible and give NO ROOM to the devil!

AVERTING DISASTER!

(this message is a close transcription of the one delivered at Community Memorial Park in New Holland, PA on May 21, 2011, at the God the Father Concert Tour event - as we all well know now, Christ did not come at 6 pm that day as Harold Camping had predicted, but this message is essential to our understanding of the times)

I have been inundated with news of physical disasters. Earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan. Violent groups of tornadoes. Huge wildfires. Massive flooding here and abroad. The devastation is broad and wide and in some cases deliberate when floodgates were opened to flood rural folks to ostensibly save city folks.

Destruction is not unthinkable – it is inevitable. It has happened before. It will happen again. Volcanoes, tornadoes, fires, you name it. What we see here pales next to what has happened in other parts of the world such as the floods in Andhra Pradesh, the “Rice Bowl” of India. A village of 15,000 was wiped off the map just like that. However, all of this was allowed by God.

Many who mock today are compared by Peter to those in the days of Noah. They mock much about the judgment, particularly when Christians ill-advisedly set dates. Now depending on how old Eve was when Cain was born and how many kids she had, there could easily have been anywhere from 1 to 5 billion people who died in the Great Global Flood of Noah’s day. People who believe that a God of love would never allow such catastrophe ignored the ample physical evidence be have in geology that points to it. There are fish fossils in the Himalaya mountains, taller than any mountains in this country. And bear in mind that most of the water in the flood came from below, not from above, and the terrain was much flatter than now. The tallest mountain ranges are more recent than before the flood, and if you really wanted to explore it, it really is true that with deeper oceans and higher mountains now, the water that exists now could have covered the whole earth including the mountains extant at that time. I love math and the math works!

Now I am an architect by trade to support myself and I care for the earth – most architect do, and we try to preserve trees and resources and make it as beautiful as possible. But what God will soon do to the earth will show clearly that he cares more for souls and justice than for the earth itself. In fact, it will be fully destroyed by fire – God-caused global warming you might say. He did it once with the flood. He will do it again with fire, and that will be more devastating than the flood.

Now for real there are disasters other than environmental ones..

Many are suffering economic disaster. Even Dubai with some of the wealthiest people in the world had to be bailed out a couple years ago. My wife and I were watching a program on TV on the United Arab Emirates, where Dubai is. A phenomenally luxurious place. They even have a huge indoor skiing facility and hundreds of manmade islands.

Here in the United States, true unemployment and underemployment is epic. You hear numbers in the media of about 9%. But when you add in those who have given up looking for work – and most out of work for more than six months are considered unemployable – and students out of college who are trying to join the workforce or those for whom unemployment compensation has run out or the millions of 1099 workers and the self-employed who are ineligible for unemployment compensation, it is at least double that –the government calls the two rates U-3 and U-6, but only the lower one ever seems to be in the news. People keep talking peace when there is no peace and recovery when there is no recovery, but we have to deal with truth.

I am an evangelist, and as I said, I primarily support myself by being an architect. In our field, the unemployment rate is 25% and the underemployment rate is 75%. A firm north of me in Doylestown than specializes in houses had the boss and 15 people working for him. Now it is just the boss who is handling a couple renovation projects. Now there is a business devastated, and there are thousands upon thousands of cases where people have plowed endless money and energy into what the economy has devastated. Union construction men are out in epic numbers. We needed a steel railing man to quote a handicapped ramp we are doing in West Philadelphia and he was out in an hour. He must have had a cordless phone and been in his car by the time he hung up.

This is truly a disaster of epic proportions! 28% of homeowners owe more on their home than it is now able to be sold for. 10% of homes are empty. New home construction is down 80%.

Yet the people of our nation are pressing on without missing a beat - the programming on TV gets worse and worse. Hardly any movies are produced that do not use the name of our God in vain many times along with filthy communication and ideas. Christ is mocked, Christians are marginalized, and even saved folk are often living greatly compromised lives. How much longer should Christ wait to judge the world?

I sort of feel if I were God, I would have done it long ago.

How about when Christians were set afire and used as lamps by Nero?

How about when Christians were tortured and killed in the Inquisition or burned at the stake like John Huss?

Or when pastors in our own United States were jailed in Virginia for preaching the true gospel in the 1600’s. You know that famous sermon by Jonathan Edwards was preached in 1741 here in America - Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. He was preaching to Americans. He became President of what was to become known as Princeton University. It was known perjoratively as Princeton Bible School because of the faith of its early leaders. Harvard and Yale were apostate even before the American Revolution and I bet you didn’t know this –

Harvard was founded in 1636. It was headed by Puritan ministers for its first 71 years. Ministers had to preach from the Greek and Hebrew Texts, be familiar with philosophy, history, and the like, and were the most highly educated people around.

No sermons downloaded off the Internet or doctorates purchased for $100 which have diminished the respect for the profession today.

According to Sam Blumenfeld in THE NEW AMERICAN

“A learned clergy was the immediate and pressing social need that Harvard was expected to supply; Harvard students were reminded that the object of their literary and scientific studies was the greater knowledge of God; and that the acquisition of knowledge for its own sake, without "laying Christ in the bottom, as the only foundation" was futile and sinful.

Such was the basic philosophy of the College. There was always the fear among the colonists that without religious education, their children would become barbarous. Which is exactly what has happened today. Secular education without biblical religion is indeed creating an ignorant and barbarous youth.

By the 1690s, liberal, anti-Calvinist influences began to infiltrate the governing body of the college. And by 1701, Harvard's liberal tendencies had become so pronounced that a new orthodox college was founded at New Haven, Connecticut, which became Yale University. All the founders of Yale were Harvard graduates in the Connecticut Valley or on Long Island Sound.

On October 28, 1707, John Leverett became President of Harvard. This was the first time that a layman and a theological liberal was elected to an office hitherto held by an orthodox Puritan minister. Although Leverett instituted no changes in the curriculum, his liberal policies began to be reflected in student behavior. He wrote in his own diary in 1717 that the faculty was having trouble with "profane swearing," "riotous Actions," and "bringing Cards into the College." Many college clubs were formed by students, which encouraged questionable behavior.

By 1800, the liberal seed, first sown by Leverett, became the full-blown fruit of Unitarianism, which rejected the Trinity, rejected the divinity of Christ, and rejected all the tenets of Calvinism, along with centuries of even older orthodox Christian theology. The final battle that ended the ongoing war between the orthodox and Unitarians took place in 1805 when Reverend Henry Ware, a Unitarian minister, was elected Hollis Professor of Divinity.”

And a not-dissimilar pattern developed at Yale, and Princeton University was born. In its early years, they pejoratively called it Princeton Bible School. Princeton still has some excellent ministers coming out of it such as Darius Daniels over at Kingdom Church in Ewing Township, NJ, but many others are not following the word of God.

Back when my Father was in Seminary in the 1930’s, our country had just gone through the shock on many seminaries going modernist and denying the fundamentals of the faith. Now today, many equate fundamentalists with people who have thousands of rules and who parse every scripture verse to the nth degree.

However, the term came simply for people who insisted on the fundamentals of the faith.

- The infallibility of scripture.

- The virgin birth.

- The sinless life of Christ.

- The eternal trinity.

- The death and physical resurrection of Christ.

- Salvation through Christ alone by faith alone, and not by works.

- The literal return of Christ.

- Eternal glory for the saved and eternal punishment in hell for the damned.

Now I stand for all those and will fight for all those. There are other tenets of faith perhaps where we can agree to disagree, but these are the most basic we cannot compromise on ANY of them.

But back then, many pastors were preaching a feel good message. This was after the set-up at the Scopes Trial – some called it the Monkey Trial, where an ill-prepared William Jennings Bryan could not answer simple questions asked by Darrow. Although Christians won legally, they lost overall because it was now open season on the Bible which continues to this day. Every Easter, like clockwork. major magazines and TV specials cast doubt on the fundamentals of our faith, especially the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ.

People began to doubt the Bible and there was a great falling away. Hitler was ascending, the Zionist movement had begun in Israel, the whore of Babylon seemed to have collapsed in the Great Depression, and many people expected Christ to come back quickly – all the signs seemed to be in place. Some didn’t have dental work done because why waste the money? But Christ did not come. Sound familiar?

Moving to today, Christian colleges are moving further and further away from their Biblical base. The creation account in Genesis which was verified as literal throughout the Bible including by Christ himself when he wrote the reason for the commandment on the Sabbath in stone for Moses to take to the people is now rejected by about 70% of CHRISTIAN colleges. Universalism is creeping in. What Carlton Pearson shocked people with a few years ago is now commonplace. People are allowing for folks to NOT know Christ and still not be condemned.

Behavior has also descended to pagan standards. Now men and women of the worldly view may expect sex on the first or second date, but in the church couples may wait longer but are still engaging in premarital sex without giving it a second thought.

I was invited to hear a female rap artist from Delaware by a Pastor I knew. I am not into rap, but the Pastor said he was reaching those kids, so I went. The girl was actually pretty good, but in between songs, she was testifying about something she said the Lord had told her and noted she was trying not to wake up her boyfriend beside her. Perhaps it was shock to have caused no reaction, but perhaps is was a yawn for many.

I was in a diner just this last Tuesday morning in Horsham where I live for an early morning breakfast.

Our regular waitress introduced us to another bubbly young waitress who commented to us how she loved Jesus and prayed to him about everything. Then she noted that it was messed up that people thought having sex and babies before being married sent folks to hell. Well, the Holy Spirit is the one who said fornicators cannot enter the kingdom of heaven. Of course far more than fornicators are on that list. It includes homosexuals, swindlers, and greedy folks as well. Of course, any of these WHO REPENT can easily enter heaven. Paul said in I Corinthians 6:9-11

“9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men 10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

Many believe Christ will come soon – they site Israel becoming a state, the increase in wars and earthquakes and what not. The fall of Egypt’s government and their stated intention to break their treaty with Israel and the announcement this week at the State Department in Washington that represented a major policy shift toward Israel has set the hearts of the prophetic folks all a-flutter.

Time does not permit, but you should read the following scriptures that proclaim that ALL nations will gather against Israel. That could easily happen soon if our nations continues down that path.

Zechariah 14:1-2, Joel 3:1-2, Revelation 16:13-16

Many thought that the United States would never turn against Israel. However, anti-Semitism has seen a revival on American Campuses, and regardless of the feelings of a majority of the American people, the official policy is one that would result in Israel having indefensible borders with other peoples sworn to their destruction. Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke eloquently, but if this is God’s time, our nation will join almost the entire world against Israel.

One could easily see why many would expect Christ to return even today, May 21st, 2011..

Now I am well aware that the world is frolicking today because today was declared to be judgment day by a famous radio personality. The Bible says many will mock and ask where Jesus is.

Unfortunately, when religious folk set dates and times which is contrary to the word of God, and believe me the assumptions and the math are totally hooey, they open up Christians to ridicule.

The world likes to say that it is sincerity that counts. As long as you are sincere, God will be pleased.

Well, Mr. Camping is sincere. He took no salary this year and put $175k of his own money into the publicity effort. Some of his followers quit their jobs to go about warning people. You HAVE to be sincere to quit your job in THIS economy or to part with 175 big ones. But we will know in a few moments that they were sincerely wrong. Families will suffer, people’s faith will be shaken. Being sincerely wrong is a disaster. A disaster we need to avert.

However, let me play Devil’s advocate and ask you this.

If Christ were to come at 6pm today, would you be ready to go with him? First off, are you born again and enjoying a life with sins forgiven and led by the Lord himself? Secondly, are you born again but in rebellion or sin of some kind that would make you fearful if he showed up? Thirdly, if you are a person serving the Lord like the ten virgins were, would you be one of the five who had oil in their lamps and full of the Holy Spirit, or would you have run out of oil and seek to get ready when it was already too late?

You see, we have to be ready whether Christ comes 6pm today, right after I am finished, or decades from now. We are to live in expectation of his coming and are to ANTICIPATE IT EAGERLY. As the Apostle John said in Revelation chapter 22, Even so come Lord Jesus.

When I was young, I was eager to drive. I didn’t want the Lord to return until I could drive.

Then I wanted to enjoy sex. I didn’t want the Lord to return until I had been married.

Well I have driven for 44 years and I have been married for 36 years, and I am ready, eager, and desirous of the Lord coming. The only reason I wouldn’t mind a little delay is to see some folks precious to me come into a better relationship with the Lord Jesus.

So I ask you. Are you ready? Are you eager?

Are you hoping that Christ really won’t come at 6pm. Just minutes from now?

If so, we need to pray.