Friday, January 31, 2014

Astrology: syncretism

I notice that many Christians look at their daily horoscope. It's got to be good. Right? It's there in the paper next to Billy Graham's syndicated column. Not so! It's there because it too is a religion. Those who participate in multiple religions are syncretic. Jews, for thousands of years, were syncretic. They not only worshiped the one true God, but flirted with pagan Gods as well.

Deuteronomy 4: 14 "And the Lord commanded me (Moses) at that time to teach you statutes and judgments, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go over to possess it. 15 Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the Lord spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire: 16  Lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female, 17 The likeness of any beast that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged fowl that flieth in the air, 18 The likeness of any thing that creepeth on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the waters beneath the earth: 19 And lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the Lord thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven."

Those who look beyond God for solace and comfort have corrupted themselves. Lifting up ones eyes toward celestial bodies for guidance is as corrupt as graven images, beast worship, or fish worship, all of which the Egyptians did!  You say "I don't worship the stars. I merely read the horoscope for entertainment!" I ask "Would you read the Koran for entertainment?" Unlikely.

The horoscope is a prediction of a person's future based on the alignment of celestial bodies. Hence, the reading of the horoscope is soothsaying!  Astrologers use the horoscope in their study of the stars and constellations. Astrology is the study of the bodies as effects human behavior. The astrologer predicts people's outcomes based on the positions of those bodies. It's a cause and effect relationship. Rather than your life being in God's will, you're a product of the gravitational pull of stars and galaxies. In effect instead of faith on God, those who read horoscopes put theri faith in material bodies. Although they are not graven images, they are likenesses of male and female pagan gods and goddesses.

The practice of astrology is a violation of The First Commandment "Thou shall have no other Gods before me."  "Well", you say, "I put God first." "Before" doesn't mean "prior to"; it means "in God's presence or in his face"!  When a person reads the horoscope they do it in God's face. He's appalled! Those who believe in or practice astrology are in effect spitting in God's face, because God commands that it's not to be done!

The Jews weren't punished for failing to worship God, they were punished for worshiping other gods alongside the One True God! That's a critical thought! Christians must never participate in popular activities associated with other religions. Examples are: horoscopes, yoga, the martial arts, meditation, positive affirmations and the like.  There is much more, all similar to the following:

Jeremiah 8:2 "And they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, whom they have loved, and whom they have served, and after whom they have walked, and whom they have sought, and whom they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried; they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth."
Remember that relying on the horoscope is soothsaying (fortune-telling). Here's what God says about that:
Micah 5:12 " And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers: 13 Thy graven images also will I cut off, and thy standing images out of the midst of thee; and thou shalt no more worship the work of thine hands."
Yes, soothsaying is as bad as witchcraft. That's what it is!  It's serious business for Christians because there is spiritual war going on. We're battling with principalities (dark angels).  If humans dabble with the occult, humans lose! It's just the way it is! However, if we obey God and his commands  we'll separate ourselves from occult practice and God will shield us!
People always say "I don't take it seriously!"  "In vain" means "without value"! Since we're not to use God's name frivolously, I might add, it's provocation to participate in false religions in vain!
Archeologists have said that ugurats such as the Tower of Babel were towers devoted to astrology. They were structures of twelve levels with each level having colors of the zodiac; and on the top deck were astrological symbols. It's clear that mankind was confused because they dabbled in astrology! That's how important it is to God that we practice no other religion in his face.
It's nothing to me, but I hate to see God dishonored! With that said, how do you think God feels about such blatant irreverence? He told us not to do it, but we just can't stay away from stuff which is an abomination to him! I'm glad we have a merciful God!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

I've got your back! (You hope!)

People are tempted!  Rather than let the apples fall undisturbed, they step on them and decay ensures. That takes clarification, I'm sure.

Today I encountered approximately 100 people since I only went to the post office and Walmart. Most people whose paths crossed mine formed impressions: fat, pretty, sophisticated, humorless, friendly, etc. You get the picture. We tend to form opinions of people with little input.

Of the 100 people I saw today approximately 5 were  acquaintances. I formed even more profound impressions of them: wise, caring, thrifty and the like. I have gone one step beyond superficial categorization based solely on physical characteristics and speech. These categories are based on experience and multiple interactions.

Other than Terri, I saw no friends today. Friends are the ones who are most like family and often are preferred company over most family members. However, on some days I do see friends. They are special!

What makes friends special? We first must know the person. Since the root word for friend means "love", we must "like" that person. I'm using "like" as a substitute for philio (brotherly) love. Lastly, we must trust the person who is a friend. It's hard to imagine having a friend who will "knife you in the back" so to speak. The modern catch-phrase for the trust of a friend is "I've got your back!"  "Sophia" at had the best definition of "I've got your back.":

"It means that if you ever get into any trouble, or anything bad, the person will be right by your side and will help you out no matter what and stick up for you. they wont leave you by yourself in any bad situation, youll always have someone by you to help you out."

That's a great definition, but would you not say that one word, "trust" sums up that entire paragraph?

A person who's "got your back" 1) is there for you, 2) they are there unconditionally, 3) they are non-judgmental, 4) they are in step with you, 5) together you're a unit, 6) they will support you, 7) they won't abandon you when there are digressions, 8) they always are of a help.

Proverbs 17:17 "A friend loveth at all times..."

Exodus 33:11 "And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend."

Job 2:11 "Now when Job's three friends heard of all this evil that was come upon him, they came every one from his own place; Eliphaz the Temanite, and Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite: for they had made an appointment together to come to mourn with him and to comfort him."

You get the point. The Bible defines "friend" fairly well. Job's friends have "got his back"!  From just these three passages we see that friends have enduring love, friends are trustworthy and straightforward and they are there for you!

We know what we desire from friends. However, sometimes we get something a little different: unfair criticism even judgment, conditional love, dislike, criticism, gossip, abandonment, ridicule, disharmony, obstruction, and aloofness.  If we get "qualities" such as these from friends, what would it take to behold an enemy?  Sure, we can overlook a friend who has some of these characteristics, but how many does it take to reclassify a person from friend to an acquaintance, or even an enemy? 

One of the qualities I respect, but is tough to take is for a friend to speak "face to face". Yes, friends can reprove a friend, but it must be a loving rebuke; not one done out of anger, spite, a personaliy disorder or just plain old meanness!  One of my friends "set me straight", and I changed sinful behavior as a result, but when a friend does the same without a spirit of love, change is not forthcoming, but anger sure is!

Now, I've  established prideful credentials of who's falsely a friend. The daily routine of that person is to establish himself "king of all"! The self-righteous king sits on their perfect throne and condemns all:

1) That person is really stupid.
2) That lady dresses so tacky!
3) He's so hypocritical.
4) She sure is fat.
5) They should do it the way I told them.
6) I am better than they are.
7) I'd never do that... wear that... say that, etc.
8) Things would fare much better if they were at my set standard.
and on and on...

The "King" above has a critical spirit, and is a false friend.

Those who seek to condemn have unrighteous hearts. They may be one of the village people in this account:

John 8:3 "And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him (Jesus) a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, 4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? 6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. 7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."

Yes, the village people were ready to stone the sinful woman when they were guilty of sin; maybe even the same sin as she!  Jesus put the self-righteous judges in their place, no matter that the woman was obviously a sinner in need of a savior. What would Jesus have done if the woman had only PERCEIVED to have been a sexual temptress? Jesus would have been even more emphatic in his accusations!  People spread false perceptions all the time, It's human nature!  However, we should expect friends to be different!

I heard something one time that I really like! I forget the source (sic), but it's profound: "Love thy neighbor as thyself!" What a novel idea! Maybe we should put that into practice some day. It sure would change things. It might even lead to a better world.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Noah and Baptism?

The Noahic Covenant is extremely important to Christians. We just need to think about it! The destruction of the earth by water is a picture of a New Covenant to come; a Covenant of Grace!  As with all the Old Testament, I ask myself "What's this got to do with Jesus?" I'll summarize by outline the story of Noah and the flood:

We know the story of Noah from Genesis Chapter 6 through 9:
(Preparations for the flood)
Verse  5: Man was wicked and was evil continually
Verse 6: The Lord was grieved
Verse 7: The Lord, being sorry he made them, said he would blot out man and the animals from the face of the earth.
Verse 8: Noah found favor with the Lord
Verse 9: Noah was blameless and walked with God. He was faithful.
Verse 10:  Shem, Japheth and Ham were his three sons.
Verse 11: The earth was filled with violence.
Verse 12: The earth and the flesh upon it were corrupt and violent.
Verse 13: God will destroy the earth because of the violence of man.
Verse 14-16: How the ark was to be constructed.
Verse 17: He will  bring the flood waters on the earth and everything thereon will die..
Verse 18: God established a covenant with Noah, his wife, his three sons and their wives (8 in all).
Verse 19-21: Animals and provisions are put on the ark
Verse 22: Noah did all that God commanded of him.

Chapter 7: (The flood)
Verse 1: Because he was righteous God told Noah to enter the ark.
Verse 2-3: The ark was loaded.
Verse 4: Seven days warning" There will be deluge for 40 days destroying all.
Verse 5: Noah did all that God commanded.
Verse 6: Noah was 600 years old when the flood came.
Verse 7: Noah's family of 8 entered the ark.
Verse 8-9: Two of every kind of land animals entered the ark.
Verse 10: In seven days the water came. (The seven day warning was up).
Verse 11: The heavens and the earth burst forth their waters when Noah was 600 years old. (This is the first mention of what's now known as a Tsunami).
Verse 12: It rained for 40 days and 40 nights.
Verse 13: A reminder that Noah's family had also entered the ark.
Verse 14-16. A reminder that all the animals had entered the arc and God shut the door.
Verse 17: The waters rose above the earth in forty days.
Verse 18: The arc floated as the water rose.
Verse 19: All the high mountains were covered in water.
Verse 20: The water rose 15 cubits above the highest mountains. (22'-6")
Verse 21-22: All land animals which were air breathing died as did swarming animals. (This really limits the number of animals species which were on the ark).
Verse 23: Only the 8 included Noah were left of those kinds destroyed.
Verse 24: The waters crested 150 days.

Chapter 8: (The flood subsides)
Verse 1: God fulfilled the covenant by making the waters sub-side.
Verse 2-3: The rains stopped and the waters subsided.
Verse 4: The arc came to rest on Mt. Ararat.
Verse 5: The water receded for 10 months and the mountain tops were exposed.
Verse 6: The windows to the ark were opened.
Verse 7: After 40 days Noah sent out a raven and it flew until the waters subsided.
Verse 8-9: Noah sent out a dove to find dryland, but it returned finding no dry land.
Verse 10: Noah waited 7 days and sent out another dove.
Verse 11: The dove came back in the evening with a fresh twig. The waters had receded.
Verse 12: Noah waited another 7 days and sent out a dove. It never returned.
Verse 13: The covering of the ark was removed and there was dry ground.
Verse 14: The earth had dried out.
Verse 15: God spoke to Noah.
Verse 16: Noah was instructed to leave the ark with his family.
Verse 17-18: Noah was told to remove  his family and all the animals left the ark and all were to mulitply.
Verse 19:  Noah removed all.
Verse 20: Noah built and altar and offered a clean animal and clean bird.
Verse 21: The Lord smelled the aroma of the ofering. God pledged to never again to curse the ground because man's heart is by nature evil. Neither will he ever strike down the animals. (Promise of grace).
Verse 22: God says that life will go on!

Chapter 9:  (After the flood):
Verse 1: God blesses the earth and tells them to fill the earth..
Verse 2-3: Everthing is given to man for his use.
Verse 4: Flesh with blood is forbidden to be eaten.
Verse 5-6: Man is forbidden not to kill beasts nor man.
Verse 7:  God repeats to multiply and fill the earth.
Verse 8: God speaks.
Verse 9: God established a covenant with Noah.
Verse 10-12: The covenant described. Never again will the earth be destroyed by water.
Verse 13: The rainbow set as the sign of the covenant.
Verse 14-16. With the rainbow God will remember the everlasting covenant never to destroy man or the earth with water.
Verse 17: God speaks again. This is the sign of the covenant.

Now you know the story. Let's see what that has to do with Jesus! Firstly, let's examine what Peter says about Noah:                 

1 Peter 3:20 (NIV) "to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, 21 and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God."

Peter says that the Noahic Covenant is a "symbol of baptism". (I should have thought of that!) As Noah and his family by faith were saved "baptism that now saves you also"! (I won't go into the efficacy of baptism here. There is much controversy whether baptism is a sacrament or an ordinance).

Looking at the chain-of-events from above, here's tha analogy to the New Testament:

We're evil as in the days of Noah. Nothing has really changed except that each day mankind grows more evil and violent! (chapter 6 verses 5, 11, and 13 corresponds with our spiritual condition today.) It's going to get worse!
  1. Matthew 24:37 (ESV) "For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man."
  2. Matthew 24:38" (ESV) For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark..."
How bad were things in the days of Noah? The world was a violent and wicked place and evil was continual. Likewise, in the time of Christ, little had changed. Man was still evil. After Jesus came evil continues! The "Lord was grieved" (Gen 6:6) then, he was grieved in the time of Christ, and he'll still be grieved when Jesus comes again because man is still evil and rebellious.

Ephesians 4:29 (ESV) "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice."
Today and in the time of Jesus we know:
Romans 3:23 "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God..."
Noah represents those who are saved. Their faith is what saved them. They are a picture of the believing Christian! Noah was so faithful that he spent years building an ark. Nowhere in the Bible does it say how long it took to build the ark. By calculation of birth dates of children and Noah's age, etc. some have estimated that it took 55-75 years to build the ark. (For calculations see 
Just as with Noah and his family, we too are saved through faith in Gen 6:7 :
Ephesians 2:8 (ESV) "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God..."

If you look at the situation, it wasn't the ark that saved Noah. It was his faith in God and his grace which brought Noah to do something about his life. He could have died too, but he turned to God! It wasn't easy. It looked so foolish, building a boat on dry land! The fools were those whose heart was darkened by the pleasures of the flesh! Salvation by grace for us is a gift just as salvation by the ark was God's gift to faithful mankind.
Noah was blameless because of his belief, Gen 6:9. Likewise, today those who turn to Christ are blameless:
Philippians 2:15 (ESV) "that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world..."
Those today who seek not the salvation of God are just as foolish as in the days of Noah:
Romans 1:21 "For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened."
God tells us of our destruction just as he did in Verse 6:13 above:
Romans 6:23 (ESV) "For the wages of sin is death..."
Just as the punishment for unbelief in Noah's time was death by destruction, nothing has changed for today except the method of destruction. Whereas in Noah's time they were punished and died by water, in the end we'll die by fire!
Genesis 6:14-16 tells how the ark shall be constructed. That's God telling Noah what he must do to be saved. The ark was built rigidly and securely.
1 Corinthians 3:14 "If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward."
That foundation; that ark is Jesus! He's the stone on which the church was built. The cornerstone. The church was built on solid rock in contrast to the ark afloat on water, with little foundation. However, that ark was built  solid to take the troubled waters for Noah. Likewise, Jesus is a solid rock that never let's us sink!
As you can tell, the ark was the foundation built which was to save mankind. God told him how to build the ship which was the device for salvation. It was to keep Noah and his family safe. The ark represents Christ. God sent Christ to save us, the same as he sent the ark. The ark Noah built had a certain size. It would have been great if all mankind had a place on the ark by being "good", but that just wasn't the case. God designed the ark to accomodate just a few! Salvation is for all, but most fail to accept it:
Matthew 7:14 "For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."
Just as in the time of Noah when it was "work" to be saved, that work was just too hard for most. Today we're saved by the "work of faith". Those in Noah's time had too little faith to join in the task of being saved! Now is just as it was then; the "way is hard that leads to life". "Those who find it are few!" The narrow gate we have today is just as the narrow door on the ark Gen 7:14-16. Few entered it! They could have, but they didn't. They could have helped Noah and got saved. They were of no faith! Earth was reprobate. They were damned.  Likewise, those who fail to listen to the message of Christ are reprobate!
God established a covenant with Noah Gen 6:18. It was a covenant of salvation! God had no intention of killing off all mankind so he saved Noah and his family! It was a covenant of grace, much like the Covenant of Grace because of Jesus' death for us. The Covenant of Grace was a "covenant of blood":
Matthew 26:28 (ESV) "for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins."
The New Testament was a "covenant of blood". The grace was in the sacrificial blood of Jesus. The Noahic Covenant was by water. Man was destroyed by water, but the earth was saved by water! By destroyimg evil, salvation was provided to the faithful.
In Gen 7:1-10. A seven-day notice was given that destruction was coming. We now have the same warning:
Matthew 24:37-39 ( ESV) "For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. "
We, like Noah, need to be prepared for the coming of Jesus. His faithful will be caught up in the air (as with Noah being caught up in the water), but most will be lost. They fail to heed the warning made here just as God gave a seven-day warning to mankind before the flood.
Noah was told to board. Then the ark was loaded with animals and and Noah's family. (Gen 7:1-16). These were the few to be saved and animals were on board that life may continue. There were animals enough for multiplying, for food and for sacrifice. Then in seven days the water came. It's now time to close the door to the ark.  In Gen 7:11-12 the rain came for forty days and forty nights. Man was confronted with water for the same period that Jesus was confronted with temptation. With Jesus it was in the desert. With man it was the water.
Water came from beneath the earth.  Water flowed profusely. Moving water here destroyed, but at the same time, those on the water were saved. "Living waters" is an important theme in New Testament times:
John 7:38 (ESV) "Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’”
The depth of the water is important! Now for the key point! The flood is a picture of Christian Baptism. For the earth to be cleansed, the water covered all. The earth was completely submerged!  Gen 7:19 says that the water stood about 23 feet above the highest mountain. Nothing was left unexposed. For this reason I believe complete immersion is the acceptable means of baptism and ideally it should be in moving or living water. Likewise, baptism is described as:
Romans 6:3 "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life."
By being "buried with him" means just that! Not partially submerged, but totally buried. Immersed!
With Noah the dirty earth, the old earth, was totally cleansed by water. Out of that water a new earth arose! God cleansed the earth of evil and made a new earth. That's just as baptized Christians. We "walk in newness of life". After the old person is buried in the water, the water cleanses and a new clean person arises from the water. That's the way the earth was. Noah wasn't baptized by the water, but the entire earth was! Not because the earth was saved. On the contrary, those dying in the water never came up, but a new generation of man arose out of the flood and started life anew!
God fulfilled the covenant.  The ark landed on Mt. Ararat. As mankind was saved on top of a mountain, man was saved on Mount Calvary. Whereas, water was at the foot of the ark, Jesus' blood was mingled with water at the foot of the cross:
1 John 5:6 (ESBV) This is he who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not by the water only but by the water and the blood."
When Jesus's side was pierced, out flowed that living water... and blood. Salvation was by the blood and water was how we were cleansed.
In Gen 7:7 God sent out a raven and it didn't return. The raven is symbolic of uncleanliness. What was dirty was symbolically disposed of. Likewise, when man arises from the water of baptism, he's a new man and the uncleanliness is gone, never to return. However, Noah next sent out a dove! The dove is a symbol of purity and when Jesus was baptized the Holy Spirit was likened to a dove. Hence, when the entire earth was baptized, the dove represented cleanliness. The earth had been purified. When we're saved and baptized we become pure and receive the Holy Spirit; the dove. The second dove returned with a live twig in it's beak. That twig represents life! When we're born again and baptized we indeed are a new creature with a new life. As the dove stayed with Noah, likewise, we shall have eternal life!
The reader should be understanding not only the signficance of the Noahic Covenant, but it's symbolism as a picture of salvation and baptism. I leave it to the reader to examine the remainder of the outline above and draw parallels which seem fitting.  However, Gen 9:15 mentions the rainbow as a symbol that God will never destroy life again by water.  Water will no longer be destroying, but "saving". It is inexplicably linked with Christian baptism. When the water subsided man was saved and the rainbow appeared out of the clouds. The rainbow, for the Christian, is symbolic of God's grace. Hence, when we see the rainbow we should think of Christ's sacrifice on the cross, our own salvation and baptism. In other words we are to think of God when we see that rainbow:
Revelation 4:3 "And he who sat there (God) had the appearance of jasper and carnelian, and around the throne was a rainbow that had the appearance of an emerald."
Isn't God all-knowing? He had our own salvation in mind when he saved the earth from it's own destruction. When he cleansed the earth, he had us in mind. It was a symbol of our cleansing. When the waters receded and the earth was again dry (Gen 8:14) we had a new earth. It had been resurrected! Likewise, when we die we too shall be resurrected. Some day there will be a new heaven and a new earth. The sinful earth will be destroyed by fire next go around. From the ashes will come a New Earth! That is likened to our own resurrection. As we receive the Holy Ghost as by fire, the next time earth will be baptized by by fire and will be resurrected.
Man, in his primitivity, communed with God. Few did. However, those with wisdom listened. That would be Noah. He and his household were saved!  Sound familiar? Look at what Luke wrote:
Acts 11:14 (ESV) "he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.’"
The message to Noah was "build an ark on dry land". It was a curious, but saving message. Likewise, God's message for us is that Jesus is the way and the only way to be saved! He's our ark! His ark is afloat and holds the Covenant of Grace. Jesus is our message. He is the Way!




Colossians 2:10 "And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: 11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; 15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it."


Monday, January 20, 2014

God's First Command and it's meaning for all times!

Sometimes we don't think enough of the words of God. What he said is often taken too lightly or superficially. With that in mind the following verse should be further examined:

Genesis 2:16 "And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."

This was said to Adam before Eve even existed. The command was to Adam. He was man so this command was for all mankind!  Let's take a look at the meaning of Adam's name. It's Hebrew. Many believe that Hebrew was the original language of mankind!  "Adam" means "one formed from the ground". Hebrew adamah means "ground". In Latin homo means "man".  Humanus means "human" and humus in Latin means "earth", "soil" or "ground". Therefore, one can readily see where Adam, ground and man or all synonymous.

Notice that Genesis 2:16 is a command of God. It's the first time God put limits on man's behavior. Before this command, for that short duration in time, there had been no laws, rules, regulations nor anything. Man was completely free to do as he pleased and was totally innocent of any wrong-doing. This is the state in which Adam was created and it's the desired state for all mankind. Some seek a "Return to Paradise" by making it to heaven while others attempt in futility, I might add, to create Paradise or Utopia here on earth!

God's "command" was a "law"! For what reason are there laws of God?

Galatians 3:19 (ESV) "Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary."
The law was given to man "because of transgression". Transgressions are stepping out of bounds or going beyond the limits God expects of his creation. Eve was deceived by Satan and broke the law; the only law that existed at that time. "Eve you say?"
1 Timothy 2:14 (ESV) "And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor."
We normally think "Adam sinned". That he did, but it was Eve who instigated it! The serpent beguiled her and she then beguiled her husband. Adam too is responsible for breaking that one law:
Genesis 3:17-19 (ESV) "And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed ...  for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
Here we see that Adam should not have listened to Eve "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife..." God told Adam, not Eve, the command. Again, the command was made before Eve was even created. Adam's role was to instruct Eve. He apparently did, but Eve didn't listen well for she got the message confused!
Genesis 3:3 "but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’”
God didn't say that! It seems that man never gets it right. Not only do we fail to hear, but we fail to understand. Eve added her own take on God's command. She did that because Satan deceived her and used what we now call "spin" to encourage her to believe a lie. Because Adam listened to woman and did as she did, his sentence was death: "for you are dust, and to dust you shall return".   This is death. God gave a command and gave a penalty for breaking that command. It was death! God's definition of death is "returning to the dust from which a person was created". Think about that! Our body is nothing more than the compounds found in the soil mixed with 80% water. We're so accustomed to adding water to a packaged recipe to have instant food, so guess what? We are no more than "instant man"! If it wasn't for the gift of mind and body we'd be little more important than Lipton's Soup!
In that same verse is more! Since we're not merely packaged soup, it is seen that Genesis 2:16 establishes our "free will". We are given freedom by God and given a command. What was Adam to do with that command? He had a choice! He could either obey God's law or violate it. That "choice" indicated that God had given him a "free will".
Probably the best definition of"free will" is our ability to make a choice without intervention by God or any others. It's an individual's own faculty. Choice is made by "reason", which is "logical thinking". Cognition is when we think and the faculty of "thought" lies in the brain. This passage from Genesis continues to grow! It's God's "First Commandment", punishment for disobedience is provided, it shows man's freedom, it acknowledges man's free will and it establishes reason in mankind. "Reason" is virtually defined by "the knowledge of good and evil". Knowing what's "wrong" and what's "right" requires evaluation. Man must reason to make a logical decision.
In order to reason it demonstrates man's unique mental capacity, going far beyond the other animals. God enhanced us with the capacity to learn by constructive thought. However, in their innocent state, learning was for befriending God, tending the garden, interacting with the animals and with each other. By eating of the fruit of the tree that knowledge was expanded to include "wrong". With the eating of the fruit was when man gained a "conscience". It's an aspect of man where our reason evaluates what's set before us. It's the "good" and "bad" scale between mind and spirit! Our mind is on the side of the flesh (body), but our spirit is our soul which must do "good" to be in harmony with God. The conscience is the check-valve which encourages, but not demands, that we obey! The interaction of mind, body and spirit is our free will and that will is inherent in the conscience.
One of the last lessons in Genesis 2:6 is not as clear. It's the first time that the "First Commandment" is stated:
Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before me."
Where in Genesis 2:6 does it say that? It's implicit, but consider first what God said later about their disobedience:
Genesis 3:22 (ESV) Then the Lord God said, Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—”
God said about Genesis 2:6 that by eating of the fruit, man sought to become a god. Hence, it is implied that Genesis 2:6 is a command for man to not make himself a god, or in plain terms "You shall have no other gods before me." Thereby, using scripture and reasoning, it is truly apparent that God's first commandment in the garden is the same as the First Commandment of the Decalogue! In the beginning "God said it." and on the mountain "God wrote it down!". In stone, no less!
There is much to be learned from that one verse. The depth of it is only scratched. Books could be written to explain that one statement of God and what it has meant for mankind and what the consequences were. Consider how important the First Commandment is! It's the "Greatest Commandment"! The Greatest Commandment is:
Matthew 27:37 (ESV) "And he said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment."
"Loving God" is having no other gods! You see, it's the same thought! It's the same thought as loving God to the extent that a person does not make himself a god!
The Bible has continuity! That's called "internal consistency". All valid works are internally consistent. A writer can't change gears, so to speak. The message must be clear and the same throughout. Scripture shows that when God spoke to Adam back in the garden in the beginning, it was the same message which he gave to Moses on the mountain and the same message Jesus gave to all mankind during gospel times. Jesus spoke the same thoughts as God did back in the garden because he IS GOD and He was there! There were no other intermediary and the same message was god-breathed!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Are addictions behavioral or genetic: Bible vs. Disease Model

A Christian where I worked, a reformed alcoholic, told me "You know alcoholism is a disease don't you? They discovered that in 1956!" Wait a minute! People have become addicted to alcohol for thousands of years and yet it was just termed "a disease". Something sounds fishy in Denmark!

To avoid modernism I look first at older volumes. The revised original 1913 Version of Webster's Dictionary states that a "disease" is "An alteration in the state of the body or of some of its organs, interrupting or disturbing the performance of the vital functions, and causing or threatening pain and weakness; malady; affection; illness; sickness; disorder; -- applied figuratively to the mind, to the moral character and habits, to institutions, the state, etc. "

First off, according to this definition, a disease is a change in the normal state of the body or its organs. It's not a mental condition or of the mind. Although the brain is an organ, it's the brain that's damaged by excessive alcohol consumption. "Addiction" is mentally engrained by behavior according to the pre-modernistic definition:

From the same resource (1913) an "addiction" is "The state of being addicted (devoted to a customary practice); devotion; inclination."

It's not the alcohol which is the source of addiction, but the behavior associated with the use of alcohol! People who are addicted have lives devoted to consuming alcohol. One can see from the definition of "alcoholic" is:

(ibid) (1913) an "alcoholic: is "A person given to the use of alcoholic liquors. "

Brief and to the point! A person who consumes alcohol on a regular basis is an alcoholic. My, how times have changed. By that definition most people are alcoholics... and maybe they are!

Hence, from the 1913 pre-modernistic definitions, alcoholism is not a disease, but a lifestyle of devotion to consuming alcoholic beverages. It's a behavior problem!  What does scripture say?

Ephesians 5:18 (ESV) "And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit..."

"Debauchery" is "extreme gratification in sensual pleasures."  Pleasures are "of the flesh", but we are to be "filled with the spirit". Hence, getting drunk is a behavior problem, according to Paul.

Sin are thoughts or behaviors. It's disobedience. God doesn't penalize people who have diseases. In fact, the afflicted are uplifted by Christ and he performed miracles on many! Alcoholism is a sin as can be seen:

1 Corinthians 6:10 (ESV)  "Nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. "

Failing to "inherit the kingdom of God" is eternal damnation. Drunkards (alcoholics) are damned, unless of course they repent.

Isaiah all but used the word "alcoholic" in this passage:

Isaiah 5:11 (ESV) "Woe to those who rise early in the morning, that they may run after strong drink, who tarry late into the evening as wine inflames them!"

Rising early to start drinking is a fairly consistent description of an alcoholic's behavior. With the preceding it should be clear to the Christian that alcoholism is not a disease, but a sinful behavior. Who is wrong? God or enabling psychiatrists? It's obvious that the Christian is to believe God who is Truth rather than those who have "what is falsely called knowledge".

I seldom read texts or listen to documentaries published or produced after 1940. It seems that modernism began to creep into American society exxponentially at about that time due to progressives in government and education.

What is modernism? It's a socially progressive trend of thought that affirms the power of human beings to create, improve and reshape their environment with the aid of practical experimentation, scientific knowledge, or technology." (Wikepedia).

Hence, modernism and progessivism are synonomous. Whereas, religious tradition and faith puts full confidence in God, modernism discredits God and desires to establish science as pre-eminent to God and scientists as well as philosophers know mor about the creation than the creator!

The progressive movement is a product of The Enlightenment. This is the period where science and philosophy took precedence over religion.  Like socialism, another product of The Enlightenment, religion is said to enslave man in ignorance and is an impediment to social justice and societal development. Clearly, modernism is atheism  or the religion of "Reason".

Modernism teaches Epicureanism. People, on social issues, are encouraged to do as they please, There is no right or wrong. Truth has shades of gray and what's wrong for some is alright for others. Modernism is the "pleasure principle". People are intolerant and hateful if they criticize the behavior of others! Hence, modernists remove any type of condemnation of people's behaviors. Their method of excusing bad behavior is calling behaviors of debauchery "disesases". This is reflected in the modern definition of alcoholism:

"Alcoholism is a broad term for problems with alcohol, and is generally used to mean compulsive and uncontrolled consumption of alcoholic beverages, usually to the detriment of the drinker's health, personal relationships, and social standing. It is medically considered a disease, specifically an addictive illness..." (Wikepedia).

Note that according to God, alcoholism is a sinful behavior. According to modernists alcoholism is a disease. Someone's wrong! Diseases are deterministic. If their is no cure for a disease the person is doomed, maybe not now, but with time. However, behaviors can be changed. It may be difficult, but is possible. With the assistance of God who answers prayers, behaviors can be changed!

Anecdotally, this is obvious! Salvation changes people. I know many addicts of alcohol, heroin, morphine and other hard drugs who were instantaneously delivered from the addiction of drugs when they turned their lives over to Christ! What medical treatment or psychiatry failed to do, God came through. All we need is faith. Yes, God can heal diseases with prayer, but with a disease there is little that you can do. With behaviors, it's possible to change by changing one's life.

Not only is the "disease model" used as an excuse for alcoholism, but that same model excuses homosexuality, bestality, theft, and even murder. Now, people do things wrong, not because they are evil, but because they have a "disease". (Of course I realize that homosexuality has been removed from the list of disorders by the modernists. Incidentally, modernists in the APA have recently stated that sex between adults and children can be helpful is some cases! How twisted is society going to get  before we destroy ourselves?)

There is hope for alcoholics. It's not a "higher power". It's God who became flesh. Jesus delivers us from sin! It's not a psychiatrist. They are perpetrators of modernism. Many are crazier than the crazies who come to them. They're not even accountable in most cases for ruining lives!

God is the "sin doctor". He repairs the mind, body and spirit. Trust him to deliver from sinful behaviors!

On Giants and their origins

There was some discussion about the term "giants" in the following verse:

Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

I've been taught to look at the King James Version as the Authorized Bible in that the scholarship and resources used to translate it from the Septuagint were the most superior. Each of the translators were "giants" in their field!  Therein lies the problem. Modern usage of the word "giant" includes those who're outstanding in some or many aspects of life.

Firstly,  it pays to look at the history of the word: how it was derived and its common usage. That's called emtomology and from the "Online Emtomology Dictionary" we see:

Giant is a noun whose usage came circa 1300, from Old French geant, earlier jaiant (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *gagantem (nominative gagas), from Latin gigas "giant," from Greek gigas (genitive gigantos), one of a race of savage beings, sons of Gaia and Uranus, eventually destroyed by the gods, probably from a pre-Greek language. Replaced Old English ent, eoten, also gigant. The Greek word was used in Septuagint to refer to men of great size and strength, hence the expanded use in modern languages. Of very tall persons from 1550s; of persons who have any quality in extraordinary degree, from 1530s.
The emtomolgy says that "giant" is used to describe great size and strength. Since Supermen and Spiderman, normal size men are scarce in history, it would appear that "great strength" and "great size" are complementary and surely proportional!
If the origianal Hebrew language used a form of the word "giant" then we can accept this emtomology.  The Hebrew word, Strongs Number H5307 indicates that in the original Hebrew language the word is nĕphiyl pronounced (nef·ēl'). The usage in the Bible is "giants, the Nephilim". Hence, the word translated in English as "giant" as used in  Genesis 6:4 is "men of great size and strength".
Seventeen more times in the Old Testament are human "giants" referred to:

  1. Numbers 13:33 "And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight."
  2. Deuteronomy 2:11 "Which also were accounted giants, as the Anakims; but the Moabites called them Emims".
  3. Deuteronomy 2:20 "(That also was accounted a land of giants: giants dwelt therein in old time; and the Ammonites call them Zamzummims;"
  4. Deuteronomy 3:11 "For only Og king of Bashan remained of the remnant of giants; behold his bedstead was a bedstead of iron; is it not in Rabbath of the children of Ammon? nine cubits was the length thereof, and four cubits the breadth of it, after the cubit of a man.
  5. Deuteronomy 3:13 "And the rest of Gilead, and all Bashan, being the kingdom of Og, gave I unto the half tribe of Manasseh; all the region of Argob, with all Bashan, which was called the land of giants."
  6. Joshua 12:4 "And the coast of Og king of Bashan, which was of the remnant of the giants, that dwelt at Ashtaroth and at Edrei..."
  7. Joshua 13:12 "All the kingdom of Og in Bashan, which reigned in Ashtaroth and in Edrei, who remained of the remnant of the giants: for these did Moses smite, and cast them out...."
  8. Joshua 15:8 "And the border went up by the valley of the son of Hinnom unto the south side of the Jebusite; the same is Jerusalem: and the border went up to the top of the mountain that lieth before the valley of Hinnom westward, which is at the end of the valley of the giants northward:"
  9. Joshua 17:15 "And Joshua answered them, If thou be a great people, then get thee up to the wood country, and cut down for thyself there in the land of the Perizzites and of the giants, if mount Ephraim be too narrow for thee."
  10. Joshua 18:16 "And the border came down to the end of the mountain that lieth before the valley of the son of Hinnom, and which is in the valley of the giants on the north, and descended to the valley of Hinnom, to the side of Jebusi on the south, and descended to Enroge..." 
  11. 2 Samuel 21:16 "And Ishbibenob, which was of the sons of the giant, the weight of whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of brass in weight, he being girded with a new sword, thought to have slain David" 
  12. 2 Samuel 21:18 "And it came to pass after this, that there was again a battle with the Philistines at Gob: then Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Saph, which was of the sons of the giant."
  13. 2 Samuel 21:20 "And there was yet a battle in Gath, where was a man of great stature, that had on every hand six fingers, and on every foot six toes, four and twenty in number; and he also was born to the giant."
  14. 2 Samuel 21:22 "These four were born to the giant in Gath, and fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants." 
  15. 1 Chronicles 20:4 "And it came to pass after this, that there arose war at Gezer with the Philistines; at which time Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Sippai, that was of the children of the giant: and they were subdued."
  16. 1 Chronicles 20:6 "And yet again there was war at Gath, where was a man of great stature, whose fingers and toes were four and twenty, six on each hand, and six on each foot and he also was the son of the giant."
  17. 1 Chronicles 20:8  "These were born unto the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants."
  18. 1 Samuel 17:4  "And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span."
1. Anaks sons were giants and they were so large that the Hebrews "appeared as grasshoppers".
2. The giant sons of Anak were called also "Emims" in the Moabite language.
3. There was a "land of giants" who dwelt there since times of old. Ammonites call them Zamzummims.
4.  King Og was a remnant of giants. His bed was described as fitting a man with size "nine cubits was the length thereof, and four cubits the breadth of it, after the cubit of a man.".  In our system that is 169.8" or 14'-2". The width of his bed was 4 cubits or 6'-4". This was a giant bed for a giant man! Og's bed was of iron to hold his weight!
5. God gave to the half-tribe of Manasseh "the region of Argob, with all Bashan, which was called the land of giants". This is another reference to King Og's land; a giant person.
6. Joshua referred to "Og king of Bashan, which was of the remnant of the giants".
7. Moses killed off most of the giants as can be seen from the kingdom of Og in Bashan.
8.  The valley of Hinnom is referred to as the "valley of the giants".
9. The wood country Joshua referred to as "the land of the Perizzites and of the giants".
10. Joshua referred to " the valley of the son of Hinnon as  "the valley of the giants".
11.  Ishbibenob,the one of the sons of the giants, the weight of whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of brass. In our weights that is a 7.5 pound spear! The weight of normal spears are 2-3 pounds.
12. Sibbechai killed Saph, which was of the sons of the giant.
13. There was a man in Gath who was "a man of great stature" (Goliath). He was born a giant!
14. This giant had four sons "four were born to the giant in Gath (Goliath)".
15. Sippai, that was of the children of the giant.
16. Chronicles repeats 13. There was a man in Gath (Goliath) who was "a man of great stature". He was born a giant!
17. David killed those whowere born unto the giant in Gath (Goliath).
18. Goliath was 6 cubits and a span (9.45 feet) plus (0.75 feet) equals 10'-2", a man who was a physical giant.

It is certain that the giants referred to in Genesis 6:4 were there before and after the sons of God came unto the daughters of men. Furthermore the Book of Enoch in the Apocrypha of the Bible says "The Book of Enoch 7:2  describes "giants" as the offspring of "Fallen angels" and mortal women. Enoch is a pseudepigrapha book, is history, but not accepted as divinely inspired. However, it must be considered just as we consider history written by modern writers.

In summary it would appear that giants resulted because of an intermarriage between angels and mortals and that those giants were in fact those men of humongous stature and strength, fitting the use of the word "giant" from the Bible. Since all mankind was destroyed in the flood save Noah and his sons and daughters-in-laws (8 people) it would appear that the giants were destroyed in the flood! However, they existed after the flood. That would mean that one of the wives of either Shem, Japheth or Ham were giants, or carried the "giant" gene.

With modern genetic techniques and the discovery of DNA we know that physical characteristics recurr in families long after that characteristic appeared to have died out. As an example I'll use an Indian friend of mine. He is dark black. His sister is as white as I am! They have the same parents. A recessive gene arose to restore that once dominant physical characteristic.  The Bible is not wrong. DNA and genetics are by God's design!

Over time giants died out. It's obvious that Moses killed many, but due to their size the land just would may not been able to support them. Their diet or lack of food would over time cause the largest ones to die off and hence their gene pool. However, giants existed past the time of David and there exists today tribes of giants in Africa. (Not 14 feet tall, but many 7-1/2 ft).

If one looks at the world in the time of Adam it was a perfect environment to support growth and health. Men lived longer and had children into old age. Men were virile for hundreds of years. With virility growth may have continued. Even King Saul was a giant by today's standards!

Dinasaurs existed. We know that and can't deny it. Most have died out, but some continue on a smaller scale: elephants, giraffes, whales, etc. We know that the environment in Adam's time supported those animal giants. Likewise, there is no reason to believe that men giants didn't exist as well! Their origination from sons of God (angels) also accounts for from whence did others come to marry into Seth's family. His family married angels which we know look like humans! They too were created by God in his own image (just like Jesus was designed from the start)!

We need to be careful when people with modern ideas insert new meanings into old writings. It's called "modernist revision". We may find angels intermarrying men and thirteen-feet tall impossible, but with God all things are possible!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Denial: We don't do that do we?

Years ago I had good friends ask me to let them know whether their son used drugs. I found out that he did use drugs and gave them the proof of it. However, rather than being greatful so they could get him help, they ceased to be my friends. There response was pretty much "Not my kid!" They never spoke to me again because they heard what they didn't want to hear. They were in "denial".

Denial is " An unconscious defense mechanism characterized by refusal to acknowledge painful realities, thoughts, or feelings." (American Heritage Dictionary).  My friends faced their most painful fear, the thought that their loved son used drugs! There were two choices to make: either deal with the truth or refuse to accept the facts.  The parents refused to acknowledge truth to spare themselves hurt. If they admitted that their son was a drug-user then they had to deal with their own pride in perceived failure as a parent, recognize that their son had a problem, deal with the problem and maybe lose their son permanently to the drug world.

I don't know the outcome, but I feel sorry for them. Being an "ostrich" may be consoling, but the only thing one changes is where there head is! They gave up good friends who could have helped them get through the ordeal. On the other hand, with denial they could have lived happily ever after. That's one reason people are in denial. It's much easier and the boat isn't rocked!

Proverbs 25:26 (ESV)"Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked."

A righteous person, who knows truth when under pressure, may give in to wickedness. Why would a righteous person cave in to what's wicked? It's easier than facing truth, because sin has consequences. Consequences usually mean dire results with depressed feelings. Acceptance (the opposite of denial) is the righteous way, but not necessarily the less painful!

Let's examine what is, but should not be, a controversial subject!  I write on many things and get favorable responses on whatever I'm writing about. However, there is one subject where everyone is silent. If I mention abortion I can hear the pregnant silence! People just don't want to discuss what they know is wrong and prevalent.

Let's not argue when life begins. However, we do know that after 24 weeks an unborn baby is quite viable. Those babies born that early live healthy lives and eventually catch up to others in growth.  I believe that we can all agree that a 24-week baby is a human being? (Fools may deny that, but I'm writing of rational people!)

Unborn babies are killed every day, oftentimes for poor reasons: poverty, Down's Syndrome, stress of the mother and any other excuse that can preserve "the mother's health" so they say. Let's admit it. Most of us sit idly by while millions of unborn babies are murdered and are with the assistance of the law and judges! What are you thinking? "I never thought about that before!" If that's your excuse you are in denial. Your head has been in the sand. You're an ostrich!

Others have thought about it, but deny the humanity of the unborn child. They tell themselves "It's only fetal tissue!" or some other readily accepted lie. Any one at all who knows biology and knows true law will tell you that an unborn baby is a human in the early stage of development and that civilized nations have always recognized that abortion is murder. Folks who reject this are in extreme denial!

In Nazi Germany people saw their neighbors herded onto trains and assumed the roll of ostrich. If they don't known for sure what's going to happen, why should they care about it? Millions died because Germans were in denial!  They told themselves that Jews weren't fully human. They were told that Jews were parasites on humanity! These are the same reasons people are ostriches regarding abortion!

After the war the ostrich citizens who lived near the extermination camps were called in to witness the carnage and murder which happened there. After facing truth, and in no position for denial, they cried, they threw-up and were in horror at the atrocities occurring right in their back yards! If citizens in America were taken to the garbage pails of abortion clinics they would be so sickened that they would beg for changes in the law! Rather than being honored, judges would be ostracized for their inhumanity! 

However, you won't see that happen. People are in denial. The rationale: Those unborn babies would have a life in poverty. Those babies with defects could never live productive lives. There are too many blacks already. Those young mothers' lives will be destroyed if they have an unplanned preganancy. Society will be better off without being over-populated... and the denial list goes on! The fact is that people desire to pleasure themselves at the expense of a life. That's the ultimate selfishness.

The time for "choice" is at the time of conception!  If people obeyed God, unwanted babies wouldn't be an issue for two reasons: 1) People would quit fornicating and 2) people would plan children, not around pleasure, but around God's will!

Romans 12:2 ( ESV) "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

Firstly, we're called to tell others of the grace of Jesus. That's not happening. Secondly, we tell those "Christians" that they aren't to be as the world is, but let God change them. What was once pleasurable will become anthema! Faith in God changes things. The mind is to be renewed. We are to discern what is in God's will. God's will is that we do good, acceptable and perfect things, not in the world's view, but His!

Is allowing abortions "conforming to the world"? Most certainly! Christian women get abortions because society accepts it. Some churches accept it! They have conformed. Likewise, "pro-choice" people have conformed. They put the civil concept of rabid "freedom" over God's sanctity of life.

Those in denial are not transformed. They hang onto the same old lies that they did before Jesus "reborn" them. Such people deserved to have their spiritual life "aborted", but by the grace of Jesus, he allowed them to be "reborn" and escape death.

Any Christian should know that abortion is not God's will!  Not only does the Fifth Commandment say "Thou shalt not kill.", but the Bible even specifies penalties for causing an abortion!

Exodus 21:22  (ESV) 22 “When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman's husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine.  23 But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe."
What if Jesus had been aborted. We would never have been reborn! Chances are that because of evil, we would never have been born in the first place. What if even one of our forebears had allowed abortion? We would not exist today because we're a composite of all the ancestors we've ever had. The absence of even one would have thrown destiny to the scrap heap! Thank God for wisdom that preceded this evil denying generation.
So what can you do? Quit being in "denial". Accept truth: killing an unborn baby is murder. Quit voting for parties and politicians which allow, even sanction, abortion. Have Christian principles! Sign petitions to change laws. Write letters to wicked judges criticizing with civility their own denial. Write openly of your opinion. (After you have an opinion). Be an active Christian. Pray!