A History Lesson For The Philippine Atheists

I read an article the other day about atheists in the Philippines trying to do good works to convert people to atheism.

They admit they are copying what they have (wrongly) interpreted as a strategy Christians have successfully used in the past.

Interestingly, this is not the first time a concerted effort has been made to copy Christian conduct for a non-Christian purpose. It failed in the past, and it will fail again for one very good reason.

In 312AD Constantine the Great became the first Christian Roman emperor, ending nearly three centuries of state sponsored persecution against the Christians. What many people don’t realize is Constantine’s successor, following the rule of Constantine’s sons, was  “Julian the Apostate.” Julian the Apostate, right named, attempted to reverse Constantine’s policies regarding Christians and Christianity.

Julian re-established paganism as the state religion, reopened pagan temples, confiscated church property, prohibited Christians from teaching, and allowed heretics who had been exiled to return in an effort to foster schism within the church. Julian even attempted to rebuild the Jewish temple in Jerusalem to get back at the Christians. Julian’s very intentional strategy was to eradicate Christianity, particularly from the governing class, in the empire.

Julian noticed how the Christians’ charitable acts attracted pagans to Christianity. Julian wrote, These impious Galileans not only feed their own poor, but ours also; welcoming them into their agapae, they attract them, as children are attracted, with cakes.” So, Julian, much like the atheists in the Philippines, attempted to foster a similar strategy with paganism, by engaging in state sponsored acts of charity in the name of paganism. Continue reading…

A Life Lesson On Whom To Trust

So, this doesn’t really have anything to do with the kingdom per se.

I’m going off topic.

But I was recently hired to defend a company sued in an overtime case by a young attorney who used to work in the same building with me. In fact, because he was a young attorney and knew I was a specialist in employment law, he would ask me for advice on and questions about employment law.

When I was hired to represent the defendant in this case, because of our cordial relationship, I thought it would be an enjoyable experience working with him. Boy was I wrong.

As it turns out, he won’t agree to anything—even the most basic rudimentary procedural protocols that everyone agrees to—because he seems to think I (or my staff) always have an ulterior motive. I thought it bizarre that someone who so eagerly sought my advice just a few months before would so eagerly distrust me or others in my office on the simplest of issues. I also thought it odd because I have a reputation for being a straight shooter.

So, one of my associate attorneys decided to do some research on this attorney. Continue reading…

How Your Sanctification Happens

“Work out your salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and work according to His good pleasure.” Phil. 2:12-13.

This scripture has always interested me.

In speaking about salvation here, Paul must be talking about sanctification. As I mentioned in my last post, this is the “being saved” part of the salvation process.

What interests me is that in admonishing the Philippians, Paul reveals insight into the process by which we are conformed into the image of Jesus. We are to “work out” or bring it about through our own will because God is at work in us. It is a partnership, or as we say in the law, a joint venture. Continue reading…

Why Your Sanctification Matters

Salvation in theological terms consists of justification, sanctification, and glorification.

Justification is what happens when we first give our lives to the Lord and are reconciled to the Lord. It is being born-again. It is what happened at Billy Graham Crusades when people walked forward to repent and pray the sinners prayer.

Sanctification is the process by which, after being reconciled to God, Christians are progressively conformed to the image of Jesus. We all start at different places on the continuum toward Christlikeness, but all Christians should be moving in that direction.

Glorification occurs upon the Christian’s death and spiritual resurrection whereby the Christian is given a glorified body and enters into eternal life.

This is why Paul speaks in different places in the Bible of of us having been saved (Ephesians 2:8), being saved (I Corinthians 1:18), and states that we will be saved (Romans 5:10).

Unfortunately, evangelical Christianity has for too long been focused almost entirely on justification and, to a lesser extent, glorification. We have been quick to count how many people raise their hands or get baptized and less concerned about seeing them discipled and developed into Christlike human beings. Continue reading…

Post Inauguration Advice for Kingdom Citizens

Well it happened.

Few believed it would happen. The polls said it wouldn’t happen. The press said it wouldn’t happen. I don’t believe Donald Trump even thought it would happen.

But it did happen, and now that Donald Trump is the 45th President of the United States, it is time to consider how Kingdom citizens in America should conduct themselves during a Trump presidency.

If you voted for Trump

If you voted for Trump, you have the more difficult task ahead. It is very likely Trump will achieve some quick, conspicuous accomplishments that will seem good for America. Trump is a man of action. He is used to getting things done. He opens his negotiations with outlandish positions (e.g. build and wall and Mexico pay for it) he knows the other side will not agree to so as to frame the negotiation favorably to achieving lesser, reasonable goals. “America First” may strike a patriotic chord, but as I have suggested in other posts, I do not believe those to be Kingdom chords. Continue reading…