Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things."

Friday, February 07, 2003

This may be one of the most dangerous times in our history for treachery. Keep praying for our intelligence services, and our readiness to deal with any threat from anywhere. As our potential for freedom increases so does the devil's attention. Think about it: our nation has made a significant turn again toward freedom, and has made many gains in recent years toward that state. Satan hates freedom and would love to enslave any nation. He doesn't like what is happening here, and would give just about anything to betray us.

Does anyone else think the French are about the most arrogant nation on earth right now? Last night I was teaching from 2 Peter 3:5-7, which describes the earth on which we stand as the funeral mound for antediluvian civilization. Many in Peter's time claimed that there was no divine intervention even since the beginning of creation, all the while standing on the majestic funeral mound of Noah's Flood. That takes a lot of blindness. The French are like that. They stand on the terrible funeral mound of two World Wars, and cling to appeasement doctrine like it was the world's last hope. Verdun. Meuse-Argonne. Normandy. Alsace-Lorraine. All battlefield monuments to their political asaninity. It's like the entire nation has become a Clouseau Political Collective. My eye twitches at the very thought.

Courage and Faith.
"A time for war." Ecclesiastes 3:8.

Wednesday, February 05, 2003

Thinking about Josh reminded me again that 15 years into this ministry we are bearing fruit in our first generation of children who have grown up here. I strongly believe that they are the fruit, first of their parents, but also of the idea that remains at our center: that saturation in truth results in a marvelous child. We also have a wonderful prep school organization, and the credit has to go to those teachers who have done such excellent jobs. But I believe what is missing in our church is also of great significance. We don't have a youth group or program. I think that many of my peers would offer scathing criticism for this, and I do believe there is a place for such ministries in the church, but still we have done without and produced great young men and women.

I believe there is a place to for evangelistic and transitional youth ministry in our church, even though the Lord hasn't taken us in that direction yet. By transitional, I mean to do what our prep school does so very well... to prepare our children to be in adult Bible Class as soon as they can. In order to do this, we would have to have someone with the spiritual gift of evangelism, and the ability to support him.

Our church has grown by word of mouth and by evangelism, but never by effort of mass evangelism. Mass evangelism is a part of church ministry too, and we ought to pray toward the development of that. We have had a few abortive attempts toward this, but have always run into obstacles. My ideal would be in-house ministry, so that we have someone on our own staff who coordinates and executes mass evangelism in our geographical periphery. Something else to pray for.

Courage and Faith.

During lunch hour today, we went to watch Josh Clayton sign his national letter of intent for the Air Force Academy Prep School. After a year there, he will go on to his four years at the Academy. Josh and his parents became a part of Front Range Bible Church just a few months after I took over the helm. He has overcome much adversity in order to get this far, and I have every confidence in his eventual success. He begins basic in mid-July.

Monday, February 03, 2003

Below is a portion of a message that I wrote for the 30th Anniversary of the Apollo moon landings. The Eagle landed, and effected a dramatic change in the view of man. We often look upward now, not wondering what it is like, but in wonder that we've been there. This past weekend we received a reminder that it takes guts to do what astronauts do. That our country produces so many citizens who aspire to break the atmospheric bond at great risk to their own lives is symbol of a culture of courage.

There is more than symbol, and more than science in our space program. The program initiated by our visionary scientists and promoted so boldly by President Kennedy is our current strategic advantage. It is the Maxim Gun of our own time, the technological breakthrough that gives us such clear advantage over our enemies that as long as we show the national will to use it, our enemies will remain cowed, and our freedom and security protected.

But we ought not to forget the faith advantage, which is far more important than technology. The battle is the Lord's, and that principle abides for any nation - outnumbered, out-teched, behind in any other category.

Courage and Fatih.

Reflections on the 30th Anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s Walk on the Moon
20 July, 1999
I. We Built the Tower of Babel.
A. Genesis 11:1-6, “Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words. 2 It came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. 3 They said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly." And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. 4 They said, "Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name, otherwise we will be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth." 5 The LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 The LORD said, "Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them.”
B. Thirty years ago this week, America built the tower of Babel. We reached into the heavens by the thoughts of our imagination and sweat of our brow, and how often we have said, “Now nothing is impossible for us.”
C. It all began back in the administration of John F. Kennedy, who inspired American taxpayers to foot the bill for a very expensive undertaking. The motive was twofold:
1. To beat the Soviet Union in the space race.
2. And to do something that was truly difficult and at the same time noble. The moon was an Everest of Everests, and we were going to climb it.
D. The Lord allowed that we should break the Babel barrier, and build our own kind of tower to the heavens. By His grace He blessed our efforts, and we succeeded.
1. This grace blessing occurred right in the middle of the second greatest crisis in our history, a close second behind the Civil War of the 1860's. I am convinced that the late 1960's were a spiritual crisis on a greater scale than what we endured a hundred years before.
2. In a way, it was a heritage blessing, something bestowed on the past generation - because the men who accomplished it were a generation older than the unrest of the college campuses.
3. But maybe you should think about the blessing of that achievement, because it was given as a blessing to America.

II. My ninth birthday, 20 July, 1969 - Concord, California.
A. We celebrated a day early, going over to my Aunt Mary and Uncle Hearl’s house. They decided to have my birthday coincide with the moon landing.
B. I can still see my father walking out of their house with a look of wonder on his face to tell me to come in and watch the event on the television - to watch the Eagle land on the moon’s surface. What a thrill that was! And later that night to hear those historic words of Neil Armstrong. Few words in the history of our world have been more historic; they will endure the test of time.
C. And on that day in America, everyone was proud of what we had done. What an amazing accomplishment for everyone. We cheered in the streets, and in our homes; we had a moment of unity when we were perched on the brink of civil war - hell, we were in a civil war.
D. This was America in Vietnam; America divided and in an unparalled crisis of moral and spiritual decay; America after Tet and just after Dong Ap Bia, Hamburger Hill; America after the assassinations of a president and also civic and spiritual leaders; America in the summer of Woodstock.
E. And yet through the dedication of 400,000 American citizens, we landed a man on the moon.
F. I saw my parents and my aunt and uncle and older cousins, and their awe at what had been accomplished, and I knew it was a special day - one that no one would forget.
G. We repeated Neil Armstrong’s words to ourselves as a holy mantra - we knew the truth of his gospel of the American Tower of Babel. “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

III. The Message: Give Your Thanks to God.
A. So we went to the moon. It was mankind’s second greatest achievement.
B. We went to the moon that God created. Another unforgettable moment of the Apollo program came when Apollo 8 astronauts Lovell, Anders, and Borman read from Genesis chapter one on Christmas Eve, 1968, giving hope to the “good earth” in the midst of the one of worst years of all time. You want to know why God blessed us? Because so many Americans had the humility to understand this principle.
C. We were merely climbing our Tower of Babel to reach the top of something that God had made. We journeyed 250,000 miles to the moon, but God made the heavens and the earth.
D. But Jesus Christ made something much greater when He died a criminal’s death on a little hill in Jerusalem of Israel two thousand years ago.
E. Man’s greatest achievement was “one small death for a man, one giant death for mankind.” For Jesus Christ won salvation for everyone by His substitutionary spiritual death.
F. With a lifetime of works, with the greatest work of martyrdom, your thanks won’t equal the sacrifice of the Son; you can never equal that work.
G. Even the work of 400,000 brilliant Americans in putting a man on the moon cannot equal that work of one man in dying for the sins of mankind.
H. But be thankful nonetheless, and remember that the greatest thanks of all is imitation. That is exactly what God wants.
I. Give what you can to the God who saves.
J. Make your life into an imitation of the sacrificial service of Jesus Christ; make your life an epistle of love for God through everything.
K. And remember to look at the moon this week with wonder in your heart to remember the cross.