A Man Rules

(© Rev. Dr. Curtis I. Crenshaw, Th.D.)

I keep hearing liberal politicians complain that Christians want the USA to be a theocracy. Christians oblige them by denying such; we want our little turf inside our churches and Christian schools. You liberals can have the rest. It is always easy to answer when the mic is not in front of you, but here is what I would like to say.

We already have a theocracy, and it is ruled by one dictator, a Man, the King of kings. He will judge every action that He disapproves, especially those actions that are egregious against the Ten Commandments.

But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. (Matt. 12:36 NKJ)

From the Holy Scriptures we see that Jesus warned us of His coming judgment:

25 “Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, 27 and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man.” (Jn. 5:24 NKJ)

Rebelliously, too many Christians today think that the Lord Jesus’s Kingship will only come after His Second Coming; and though He will judge then, His sovereignty has always been in the sense of deity. But as a glorified Man, He is NOW ruling over the world. What do we make of Matthew 28:18-20:

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying,


18 All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.      (statement)

19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,                       (two commands: GO and MAKE DISCIPLES. Here is what they are to do: baptize and teach)

baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

      20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you;

and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.   (statement)


This is Trinitarian theology in baptism and growing in grace by giving our the word.

This is another Joshua, for here as there, the LORD commissions His men to go in to conquer the land, except in Joshua the land was limited but here it includes “heaven and earth.” As in Genesis the Triune God created “the heavens and the earth” and gave man dominion over it. Now the new resurrected, ascended Lord, is over all things, and He has given charge to His people to take the “land.” This means not only is that Man over all things, but we, as His vice-regents, are also over all things. We conquer by the Gospel, by the two edge sword coming out of His mouth, and thus also coming out of ours.

Moreover, we see from this Matthew 28 passage that the Church is being built by making disciples, and baptizing and disciplining them. This Church is a kingdom now all over the world, literally in every country, and growing by the power of Jesus’ Gospel and the omnipotence of the Triune God.

What did Peter say in the first Christian sermon?

“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” (Acts 2:36 NKJ)

Now we are to follow what the Lord God said to Abraham when He told him that everywhere he stepped, that property belonged to him and to his seed. As St. Paul said:

And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. AMEN.  (Rom. 16:20 NKJ)


If Satan is crushed under His feet, we, along with the Son of God, do the same:

And I will put enmity           between you and the woman,

And                                            between your seed and her Seed;


He shall                                   bruise your head,

And you shall                         bruise His heel.” (Gen. 3:15 NKJ)


If these things are true—and they are!—we have a theocracy under His Sovereign Majesty, the Man, King Jesus. Our weapons are the gospel and our lives spent in His service.

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb

and by the word of their testimony,

and they did not love their lives to the death. (Rev. 12:11 NKJ)



Reformed Episcopal Church Statement


Adopted by General Council, May 28, 1993; revised April 18, 1998:

Built upon the foundation of the authoritative Word of God, the Holy Scriptures, the Reformed Episcopal Church sets her highest priority on Biblical worship, and declares her commitment to the work of evangelism, the bold and unadulterated proclamation of salvation by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 8:4).

In keeping the faith once delivered to the saints, the Reformed Episcopal Church, however, does not believe evangelism to be the end, but rather the beginning of her divinely given vocation.

Thus, she is deeply committed to discipleship, the work of training evangelized men and women in Christian living (St. Matthew 28:20). When the Gospel is truly proclaimed and the mercies of God are made known, the redeemed must be led to offer their bodies as a living sacrifice, which is their spiritual service of worship (Romans 12:1).

Thus, the Reformed Episcopal Church understands the Christian life to be necessarily corporate. The Gospel call of salvation is not only to a Savior, but also to a visible communion of those who have been saved (I Corinthians 12:27), which communion, being indwelt by Christ’s Spirit, transcends both temporal and geographic bounds.

Therefore, the Reformed Episcopal Church is creedal, following the historic Christian faith as it was affirmed by the early undivided Church in the Apostles’ Creed (A.D. 150) and Nicene Creed (A.D. 325); sacramental, practicing the divinely ordained sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper as outward and visible signs of His inward and spiritual grace; confessional, accepting the doctrines and practices of the English Reformation as found in the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion; and episcopal, finding unity with the Church of the earliest Christian eras through submission to the government of godly Bishops.

In this fashion, by embracing the broad base of doctrine and practice inherent in the historic Church of the Reformation, the Reformed Episcopal Church has a foundation for effective ministry in the name of Christ to a world which is lost and dying without him.

Oxford Martyrs’ Day

OxfordMartyrsDayOn this day, October 16, in the year 1555, Bishops Nicholas Ridley and Hugh Latimer were tied to a stake in Broad Street in Oxford, and burned to death.  The following spring, on March 21, 1556, Archbishop Thomas Cranmer was burned at the stake.

This was at the time of the English Roman Catholic Queen Mary (“Bloody Mary”).  Cranmer was the architect of the Book of Common Prayer.  Ridley was one of his chief advisers and right hand man in the reforms of the Church of England.  Hugh Latimer was a godly, aged bishop who had also helped the cause of reform in England.

Today is called Oxford Martyrs’ Day in Anglican circles, because on this day we remember all three martyrs who died so bravely in that city.

When bishops Ridley and Latimer were tied together to the same stake on that day, 460 years ago, Latimer addressed his brother bishop in one the greatest statements in our history:  “Be of good comfort, Master Ridley, and play the man. We shall this day light such a candle, by God’s grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out!”

May God give us a double portion of their courageous spirit to stand for what is right in our culture and in our context.


God bless,



 A Collect for Oxford Martyrs’ Day

Almighty God and everlasting Lord, in whose sight the death of Thy saints is precious, we beseech Thee to look down upon upon us with favor as we commemorate this day the deaths of Thy servants, Hugh Latimer and Nicholas Ridley, Bishops of the Church of England, and Thomas Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who were burned to death in Broad Street in Oxford, England for their faith; Grant to us the same steadfastness of faith, that we, standing firm in Thy Holy Gospel and belief in the Mighty Resurrection of Thy Son, Jesus Christ, may prevail against all the assaults of the world, the flesh, and the devil; and at the last, come to Thy eternal joy, through the same, Thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Rev. Jonathan O. Trebilco

Saint Francis Anglican Church

(Reformed Episcopal/ACNA)


The Sovereignty of God Guarantees My Safety


“In Him also we have obtained an inheritance,

being predestined according to the purpose of Him

who works all things according to the counsel of His will” (Ephesians 1:11 NKJ)

(© Curtis I. Crenshaw 1 October 2015)

Time to make you mad.

If you want to know why people hate Christianity, there are several reasons: their favorite sins are condemned; God—not them—is sovereign; the Holy Trinity does not make sense to them; they hate the atonement; they hate that Jesus is the only way to God, and other matters. But it is especially because we preach a sovereign God (the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit) who will judge everyone at the Last Day that they despise with zeal. If you want to know what everyone guards with enmity, it is their “free will” (whatever that is). If you want to know what god people will worship, it is the one who will let them be “master of their fate and captain of their soul,” as Henley (1849-1903) said in his horrible poem, Invictus, which is often quoted by graduates who speak at their graduations, thinking they determine their own future fates. Have you noticed that unbelievers will create a god after their own image who just happens to smile on their favorite sins?

People want to qualify Him, to pretend He can be controlled, so that the sovereignty of God has been dying a slow death of a 1,000 qualifications, or so they think. What is protected and not qualified is the alleged sovereignty of man, but it is only in the sovereignty of God that we have hope, peace, and comfort. If God is not sovereign over our circumstances, but we are, then we can be defeated, Satan can crush us, and there is no security for tomorrow, just more chance and chaos. Indeed, if we are sovereign, then which one of us is really sovereign over all others, for if all are sovereign, then you are my enemy. Is that not what we see in politics–each party, each committee, each politician, trying to out-maneuver the others with lies, schemes, and deception, and the devil seeking to bring havoc on His elect often through them.

There are two tenses that should be noted in the above quoted verses: “being predestined,” past tense, done, over, blueprint printed, no creature consulted; “who works all things,” plan now being executed, no creature given to thwart His proceedings, our salvation is secure. Over the years I’ve tried to rid myself of a common expression: “Let God.” How many times do I hear a Christian on the radio that all we need to do is “let God” do something because He has done all He can. Now we are in charge. I beg to differ. The Church begs to differ. The Bible begs to differ.

Our so-called “free will” does not hinder the work of God, does not change His blueprint, past or present. Once a lady called me at home because she was very upset that I did not believe in “free will.” I asked her if the unbeliever’s will was free from our indwelling sin (Mark 7:19-23), to which she correctly answered No. I asked her if the unbeliever’s will was free from the devil, to which again she correctly said No (2 Timothy 2:26). I asked her if the unbeliever’s will was free from the controlling power of the world (1 John 2:15-17), to which again she rightly said No. Now there was only one logical conclusion: man’s will is not free. Then I asked, “What is the unconverted person’s will free from,” to which she floored me with, “It is free from God!” Then I in expiration I said: if his will is enslaved to the flesh, to the devil and to the world, how can anyone become a Christian?” to which she said, “I don’t know; that is God’s problem.” To which I said, “That means God is sovereign!”

No military enemy, no terrorist plot, no college professor who delights in deceiving youthful minds to embrace the devil and his immorality, no two-faced politicians who speak with forked tongue, no conspiracy theorists—nothing, can thwart the predestined plan of the Sovereign Triune God.

In Ephesians one, we see why each Person of the Holy Trinity did His part: each one to His own glory. See the underlined words:

THE FATHER (before the foundation of the world; completed His blueprint):

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He has made us accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:3-6).


THE SON (two thousand years ago; completed His cross-work)

7 In Him [Son] we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence. . . . hat we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. (Ephesians 1:7-8, 12 NKJ)


THE HOLY SPIRIT (ongoing as He applies the merits of the Son to us):

that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. 13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory (Ephesians 1:13-14 NKJ)

Notice that the underlined words in each stanza reveals why the Holy Trinity does what He does: the Father chose us, the Son redeemed us, and the Holy Spirit applies to us . . . each for His glory. His glory will not be stopped.


Before the world was created, God the Father chose His elect. His predestination work was done. Two thousand years ago God the Son redeemed us on the cross. His work was done. Now the Holy Spirit is sanctifying us; His work continues. They work as One so that those the Father chose will certainly be saved; those for whom the Son effectually died, cannot possibly be condemned; those for whom the Holy Spirit applies His merits, must persevere in faith and holiness (Phil. 2:12-13).

I feel like a newborn babe in his father’s arms, all snuggly warm in a blanket, looking at him looking back at me with a big smile, daring anything to harm me. Now from Romans 8:


31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.


34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”



37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God [Father] which is in Christ Jesus [Son] our Lord. (Romans 8:31-39 NKJ)

What does the devil do?

10 Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. 11And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. 12 Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.” (Revelation 12:9-12 NKJ)


Bottom line:

14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. 16 For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham. 17 Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. 18 For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted. (Hebrews 2:14-18 NKJ)

For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. (1 John 3:8 NKJ)

Jesus’ earthly policy: They lose, we win.

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore . . .” (Matthew 28:18 NKJ)

End of story.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost; as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. AMEN.

Which God Is Lord?

© Curtis I. Crenshaw 7 September 2015

As you may have heard, Kim Davis, a Kentucky county clerk, has refused to issue marriage licenses to a gay couple. She has chosen jail over compromise to King Jesus. This test of the gods was sure to come, and the only surprise is that anyone is surprised. The world thinks that anyone in power has the right to make the laws of the land, that morality is arbitrary, that the highest law in the USA is the Constitution, which is really not true. The founding fathers wrote the Constitution with the idea that we would have a nation of laws and not of tyrannical leaders. BUT we now have not a Constitution but an oligarchy, a nation ruled by five judges who interpret the law, which really means, they make the law. There is absolutely nothing in the Constitution to change the definition of marriage, just as there is nothing there to give mothers the moral right to kill their babies.

I do not know the demeanor of Kim Davis when she refused the marriage license, but I hope it was one of humility and grace. While we Christians disapprove of LGBT, we do not disapprove of those in the movement. We do not have to affirm their actions to affirm them as creatures made in the image of God. My personal prayer is that the leaders in the group will be converted to Christ. Rosaria Butterfield was a tenured English professor at Syracuse University and living with her lesbian partner. But she was thoroughly converted to Jesus, left her lesbian partner, gave up her tenure, is now married to a male pastor, and they have four children! Another pastor befriended her with grace, and challenged her to read the Bible, which she did for several years, five and six hours a day, and she never looked back. (See her video here on YouTube.) So this blog is not meant to throw stones at the LGBT people per se, but to challenge us Christians to be understanding, and to stand with Kim Davis. We are in spiritual warfare, the battle that St. Paul spoke of clearly in Ephesians 6:9-13:

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (NKJ)

This battle is especially heating up in West in general but in the USA in particular. Things are coming to a head, finally. By this polarization, Christians, and all people in the USA, will have to choose who is the god around this country, Jesus or Caesar? The Supreme Court has drawn a red line through the middle of our culture, and has demanded that all people recognize their new definition of marriage, virtually the first time a whole nation has embraced such in history, that I’m aware of. It is not enough for us Christians to passively agree to same sex marriages, but our culture wants to make us endorse it is morally ok or else. . . . We must have the same confession or creed that they do. We must give up the Triune God or be persecuted. Consider the three Hebrew men in Daniel when they were so confronted.

Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the gold image which I have set up? 15 Now if you are ready at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, and you fall down and worship the image which I have made, good! But if you do not worship, you shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you from my hands?” [Notice the challenge to the God of heaven.]

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.” (Daniel 3:14-18 NKJ)

When the music plays (when government commands), all its citizens are expected to bow.

The judges are no longer bound by the chains of the Constitution. Now judges will want to make an example out of Kim Davis for not bowing to them when the “music” is played. Kim has drawn a line in the sand and has appealed to the ultimate Supreme Court, King Jesus.

We know how the story ends: the three Hebrew men are cast into the fire, but they are not burned. The pre-incarnate Son of God walked in the furnace with them, and they were delivered. But even if they had not been delivered, they made it clear that they would still not worship false gods. Those who die in Christ, go to be with Him, so they are delivered even in death (2 Corinthians 5:8). Christians always win; again, Christians ALWAYS win. If we are delivered from death, we win; if we are delivered through death, we win! The world has never understood that death is not our enemy, as it is for everyone else, but our friend.

“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD shall be safe” (Proverbs 29:25 NKJ).

14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage (Hebrews 2:14-15 NKJ).

Who is in trouble, Kim, or the Supreme Court? We Christians are peaceful, loving our country, maintaining a non-violent stance, being kind to (or should be) those who would force their idolatry on us. But that is not good enough. Everyone is exclusive in his worship, and those in power want Christians to knuckle under and confess a new god whose immorality is idolatrous. We cannot do that; we must not do that; we will not do that.

As I’ve said many times, the ungodly powers do not mind us worshipping a private Jesus, but He allegedly has no jurisdiction in public—that sphere belongs to the Caesar god. We humbly disagree. We cast ourselves on the mercy of the Court, the ultimate Supreme Court, the court that the King of kings dominates, the court that rules in all affairs of mankind. We often hear that such a stance brings religion into the public sphere, which allegedly ought not to happen, for the public sphere is where Caesar rules.

It is amazing to me that even Christians fall for such obviously rebellious statements. By “religion” those who oppose us mean statements about God, or our beliefs about Him, which they take perhaps to be well meaning but having no relevance in the culture as a whole. Sincere beliefs, they maintain, are ok, just irrelevant. My responses to that are several:

  • There is no such thing as a non-religious belief; all beliefs have transcendent referents or they are cannot be communicated. For how can one say Caesar is Lord unless he invokes the laws of logic and grammar of language that are over everyone, which in turn are created by the Triune God.
  • Every law enacted by the government is either an application of God’s law or an act of rebellion; there is no moral neutrality.
  • Every law enacted by mankind is someone’s morality.
  • We Christians love our country (I have a Bronze Star and Purple Heart from Vietnam), but for the good of our country and our souls we must do what St. Peter said:

27 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest asked them, 28 saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” 29 But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Act 5:27-29 NKJ)

But someone will say: “Did not Kim sign an oath to uphold the laws of the land.” The obvious answer is “Yes.” But she is under a greater oath to support the law of King Jesus. When man’s law conflicts with God’s law, we must humbly and with non-violence obey God rather than man, which, in the long run, is indeed good for our county.

When I was in Vietnam, we were forbidden to mistreat prisoners. “William Laws Calley, Jr. was a former United States Army officer found guilty of murdering 22 unarmed South Vietnamese civilians in the My Lai Massacre on March 16, 1968, during the Vietnam War.” [Wikipedia, accessed 5 Sept 2015] Some soldiers offered the excuse that they were commanded to kill those innocent civilians, but the prosecutor’s response was that he (and others, like myself) were trained not to obey such an order. A higher law ruled.

In our culture, people do not take the Triune God seriously; they do not believe in the Last Day and final judgment so they seek to make Him irrelevant and man’s law relevant.

I heard Obama comment on Kim on the news in the last few days, and he said she was required to obey because we are a nation of laws. What incredible hypocrisy! What did he do about the IRS that he promised to do? What did he do about Benghazi?  Did he order an attack on Fox News to be investigated in disobedience to the First Amendment? Do you recall, “If you like your health plan, you can keep your health plan? If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor?” Not to mention that each family would save significant money per year by taking the new plan, only to find it costs more, etc.

The national outrage against Kim has little to do with her refusing to obey man’s law and everything to with her Christian beliefs. It is the War of the Worlds where the unseen dominates the seen.

In the movie The Matrix, Morpheus (Greek god of dreams) takes Neo to see the Oracle, who reveals the truth and the future to Neo (change order of letters and you have One, Neo was the One); and right after Neo was martyred, Trinity resurrects him from the dead with a kiss, at which point he becomes invincible. All happens according to prophecy given by the Oracle. The unseen Matrix controls reality for everyone. The betrayer (Judas) of those who oppose the Matrix wants to be deceived so he gives himself to it for temporary peace, prosperity, and safety. Those who know the truth about the Matrix are the enemy; not those who live according to the Matrix’s rules. (Excellent movie; I’m describing the first one in the trilogy; others are not as good, in my opinion.)

No wonder Christians compromise because they have been trained not to take God’s law seriously, especially when we hear things like “We’re not under the Ten Commandments.” Really, the law is a revelation of God’s character (Leviticus 11:44-45; 1 Peter 1:15-16) so does His character change? Or, “It is still ok to worship God in our churches so what is wrong with that,” we hear? BUT the issue is, “Who is God?” A culture reveals its true god when its cultural beliefs are enshrined in its laws. Christians must not fall for the idea that Jesus is Lord in the churches but Caesar is lord outside the churches.

WE are being de-Christianized as a nation. We Christians are increasingly being moved to the fringes of our culture, being marginalized to irrelevance. But most of the guilt belongs to us for allowing such. If we stand, perhaps even now, we can turn things around, but it will cost us something. Let us Christians be like the three Hebrew men standing before a tyrannical king; let us be an anvil that wears out many hammers. AMEN. Ὡ

Joy in Trials

© Curtis I. Crenshaw 26 August 2015

(James 1:2-4 NKJ)

My brethren, count it all joy

     when you fall into various trials,

     knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.

But let patience have its perfect work,

that you may be perfect and complete,

lacking nothing.

There are two commands in these verses: count it something and let have something. The first command combined with its extra words is to “count it all joy” when, not if, we fall into various trials, and the second command is to let patience have its perfect, or maturing work, that we may be complete; that is, made holy. Trials are God’s sanctification on steroids, making us speed up into holiness to keep His commandments. As David said,

  “It is good for me that I have been afflicted,

That I may learn Your statutes” (Psalm 119:71 NKJ).

My favorite passage of scripture when I was a child was Job chapters 1-2. I had my mother and grandmother read the first two chapters to me many times. I guess that Job chapters 1-2 being my favorite passage was somewhat prophetic as I’ve had a major affliction each decade of my life.

You recall Satan appearing before the Lord God, and who started the contest between Satan and Job? It was the Lord:

6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7 And the LORD said to Satan, “From where do you come?” So Satan answered the LORD and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.” 8 Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” 9 So Satan answered the LORD and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? 10 Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” 12 And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.” So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD. (Job 1:6-12 NKJ)

The first affliction I recall was when my mother married a Baptist preacher when I was eleven. Unknown to her, he had been run off from his last church when he was involved with a teenage girl. Two years into his marriage with my mom, a woman in the church lost her husband to an accident. She received double indemnity pay out. Thus, he tried to murder my mom pregnant with my half brother, make it look like an accident so he could keep his church, marry the new woman, and have the money, but it did not work.

(I’m not going to rehearse all my trials. I have a book titled Why Is God Always Late? that does that.)

There are two huge assumptions that underlie Job and James. Can you see what they are? Without these assumptions we would not appreciate or even really understand Job and James.

(1) How can we possibly consider it joyful (James) when we enter trials unless our loving Jesus is in control? We see that in Job: God started the context between Job and Satan, and controlled it from the beginning. Moreover, it is one large assumption in James, for if we were in control or Satan was in control, I can guarantee it would not be joyful but miserable. In 1 Corinthians 10:13 we have confirmation of who is in control:

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. (1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJ)

The words in bold clearly state the Triune God is in control and that He will not allow us to be too sorely tempted or crushed. He knows just how much pressure to put on us, how long it should last, and when to remove it, which may not be until we die. But let us see what the Lord of glory seeks to produce in us by His trials:

“Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:11 NKJ)

“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14 NKJ).

Notice two things from these verses in Hebrews: (1) no trial seems to be joyful, but we are to mentally by faith declare it such according to James. (2) And why should we? It is because of what He is producing in us: righteousness or holiness, without which we shall not see the Lord in mercy but only in judgment.

(2) Second assumption given to us in James is the little four letter word “when.” We see the same teaching in Hebrews 12:6: “For whom the LORD loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.” There is no true child of God without some trials and suffering. Even the Son of God “learned obedience by the things He suffered” (Hebrews 5:8). (Not, by the way, that He had to learn to overcome His sin—He had none!—but that He learned how to keep from sinning by suffering.)

Other applications: from Job (and the Lord’s angst in the garden just before His crucifixion), we know that it is ok to feel the strain of a trial. If someone we love dies, we cry (John 11:35). If we get hurt, we feel the pain. AMEN. Ὡ

No Creation

© Curtis I. Crenshaw 31 July 2015 Once we gave up the doctrine of creation, we have been gaining momentum in our downward moral free-fall. It has been said that the first verse of the Bible contains the whole Bible. If we believe “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,” everything else is downhill. Is it any wonder that Satan has attacked that part of the Bible more than anything else? Evolution rules the day, and if anyone challenges it scientifically, the pseud-pundits turn into piranha, devouring everything in sight with emotional frenzy. Logic goes out the window, as does science, hate comes in, and the scientists rail against anything Christian, or anything that challenges their mental darkness, such as Intelligent Design. Truly we can see the Apostle John’s words in action: “And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil” (John 3:19). We can see LGBT people and evolutionists screaming out in rage against moral and scientific truth, and “screaming” is the operative word. The implication of creation is judgment by the infinite, personal Triune God. Men love their sin; ergo, creation must go.

So what has happened since Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species went public? There were many who took evolution to its logical conclusion. Papers on eugenics[1] were being written by the hundreds on both sides of the pond, with the idea that if random chance made humans so superior to other animals on planet earth, what would happen if we humans controlled our own evolution. Nietzsche said that God was dead, by which he meant that we are now in charge of our own fates and that if evolution is true, there is absolutely no morality except what we humans choose for ourselves. Thus,  fellow humans are now candidates for guinea pigs, for the end now justifies the means.

The idea of the Superman came from Nietzsche, a superhuman who could advance mankind to another level. In philosophy I read his Joyful Wisdom, which was neither joyful nor wise. Nietzsche wanted to take evolution very seriously so he said we should be able to kill with no conscience, just as nature does. There is nothing transcendent to nature; death is a large part of what nature is about, which is improving the human species by death and reproduction through the survival of the fittest; thus we should understand the implications of these things. There is no Christian God; He is now dead. There is no morality, just interpretations; and the most vocal imposes their morality on the rest. Now that God is gone, there is no truth (and that is true), so we must have “the revaluation of all values.” We must eliminate all Christian vestiges from our societies, to stop fooling ourselves that there is something when there is nothing, for that holds back “progress.” Each individual is his own god, his own morality, and whatever promotes this is good, and whatever challenges this is bad. Nietzsche wanted to rid us of the idea of morality as submission or obedience, for there is nothing above us. We should embrace our animal instincts to survive, such as aggression, which is what we see the animals doing. (It is fitting that Nietzsche spent the last ten years of his life absolutely insane, dying in 1900, having been taken care of by his sister.)

Nietzsche drew the conclusion from evolution that the weak should be eliminated, and especially that they should not be pitied, for pity is weakness. [2] Christianity supports the weak and has mercy or pity on them, which Nietzsche despised and found contemptible. In fact, the law of the survival of the fittest demands that we do not have pity or exercise compassion on the weak, such as those with handicaps. Evolution eliminates these in nature, and so should we, Nietzsche reasoned. If we did not spend so much time and money on helping the weak but in promoting the strong, mankind could advance much faster, and who knows what kind of super-race that we will become.

We know that Hitler visited the place of Nietzsche’s death, and that he admired Nietzsche greatly. We further know that Hitler was interested in eugenics from the experiments he performed on Jews and other undesirables. But Nietzsche and Hitler were not the only ones who denied creation and promoted eugenics.

Margaret Sanger, who founded Planned Parenthood (What a euphemism!), also wanted to eliminate undesirables from the human race. In founding Planned Parenthood, she stated: “More children from the fit; less from the unfit—that is the chief issue of birth control.”[3] Have you noticed that most of Planned Parenthood’s death mills are in minority neighborhoods? Now you know why. AMEN.

[1] Allegedly improving genetic human features through artificial human breeding and manipulating of human genes.

[2] Alister Kee, Nietzsche Against the Crucified, ch. 7, “The Will to Power.”

[3] Richard Weikart, From Darwin to Hitler, p. 135, excellent historical research. For an excellent work on Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood, you must read George Grant, Grand Illusions: The Legacy of Planned Parenthood. These books are MUST reading.