THEY WERE ALL WRONG

A good many years ago, a preacher went into a town where there was no New Testament church. He preached in a house of worship and then in the market place of the city.

Soon the religious leaders of the city heard him and invited him to address them. They thought if his religious claims seemed meritorious to them, they would fellowship him. But, to their dismay and confusion, he preached that they were wrong and he was right; that their worship was not acceptable to the God of heaven. He preached that the church to which he belonged was the only true church of the living God.

Such a preacher! Don’t you know he hurt their feelings? Evidently they were sincere. Surely he could have made a nice talk and got away without causing any discord!

Who was the preacher anyway? His name was Paul, and he preached this sermon in Athens. It did cause some stir. It did not please those leaders at all. They got up and left before he finished. But the sermon pleased God. You can read it in Acts 17. There is no room in Christ’s church for a compromiser.

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Ac 17:16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. 17 Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him. 18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection. 19 And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is? 20 For thou bringest certain strange things to our ears: we would know therefore what these things mean. 21 (For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.)

22 Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. 23 For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

 24 God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; 25 Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; 26 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; 27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:  28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. 29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. 30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:  31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.  

32 And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter.

 33 So Paul departed from among them.  34 Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areopagite, and a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

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TOO MUCH FUN

Is it possible to have too much fun? Perhaps…

We are ruining our lives. One way we’re doing this is by viewing entertainment as our highest priority. None of us wants to be bored. By using amusement as the remedy it becomes the norm, we learn to crave constant amusement and entertainment. We’re striving to create magical “DISNEY LIKE” moments every day which make them less magical requiring us to search for more and more.

Boredom also leads to spending money in our pursuit to thwart boredom. We go to the mall, movies or amusement parks seeking that ever elusive fix called excitement.

There’s a song called, “Too much fun”, but it only refers to meaningless or harmful things as fun. Yes, we CAN have too much fun when that is the only type we pursue.

The radio host, Dennis Prager, says that fun can be categorized 3 ways; Harmful fun, Meaningless fun, and Meaningful fun. Let’s look at these…

Harmful Fun, this is the entertainment that causes us harm. These can be summed up in Galatians 5 called the works of the flesh. “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness…” The list also includes drunkenness, drinking parties and the like. Any fun that is taken from this list may seem pleasurable for a time, but in the end leaves us empty and unhappy. [Heb 11:26; Pr 23:32]. Harmful fun can also be spending too much time with Meaningless fun…

Meaningless fun, this is the entertainment that is not sinful or wrong in and of itself but adds little to no value to your life. Video games, certain fiction novels, TV watching and the like. Meaningless fun can be described best as entertainment that is passive as opposed to active. When we watch TV, whether it be sitcoms or sports, we’re actually just watching other people making a good living at their jobs.

Meaningful fun, this is the entertainment that adds value to your life or the life of another. Reading of good literature or of non-fiction. Better still, the reading of Scripture [Eph 3:3; 2Tim 2:15], yes, studying your bible can be entertaining. Meaningful entertainment choices are those things which require you to be an active participant rather than a passive watcher.

Another area that very few consider fun is work. Our society has demonized work, but there are millions that truly enjoy their work (and not just for the money). I’ve met teachers, doctors and even janitors that like going to work because of the joy it brings to them.

Can service to your fellow man be fun? Certainly so. Many hours have I sat at the feet of one of my elders, listening to the stories of the depression and the War. Joy was to be had by both of us, myself for the valuable insight of a life well lived and for them, to have someone, anyone, showing an interest in their lives.

Is there a remedy to this problem of “TOO MUCH FUN”?

First, we need to examine other methods to combat boredom, rather than just taking the easy path of passive, mindless fun. The 10th chapter of Proverbs say, “He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of the diligent maketh rich. 5 He that gathereth in summer is a wise son: but he that sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame.” [See also 10:16; 13:4,11; 18:9]

Service to another can be fun and overcome boredom. In service that is voluntary or money making, either way, we can find joy and be entertained in it. There’s value beyond ourselves in service when you consider God’s word on such things. [Mat 25:35; John 13:17]

Now go out and have some fun.
Pr 13:4 The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.

Is God telling YOU what to do?

Is God Telling Me what to do?

Is God Telling Me what to do?

WHY ARE PEOPLE so ignorant about God’s word? I keep asking this question over and over. Can’t they see what I see when I read?

The answer is in the question; In my years as a Christian along with my time as an evangelist I have figured it out…. THEY’RE NOT READING THEIR BIBLES!

However, everywhere I speak to people about God and Jesus the Christ, I find that folks have very strong opinions about what saves and what doesn’t save. From where are they getting this stuff? I think they’re making it up and/or assimilating ideas from pop culture.

Some tell me that, “the Lord spoke to me.” I even found an organization, designed to encourage women, that has a direct quote on their website from God, that this founder heard in her mind.

This can be exciting for some folks, to actually have God speaking to you! How fantastic that would be, if it were true.

Being the open minded man that I am, I offer this flow chart to answer the question……

IS GOD TELLING YOU WHAT TO DO?