One Thing You Lack

One Thing You Lack

He was apparently raised in a very religious home, and was still a highly religious man. Not only did he know the commandments, but had kept them all since his youth – up to and including to this very day. Now we see him asking Jesus to help him with his desire to inherit eternal life (Mk. 10:17-20). The next fifteen words in this text are some of the most vital, critical, and essential to our understanding of the Lord, the lost, and the truth about what real, sincere, and Christ-like godly love looks like in the entire New Testament. “Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, ‘One thing you lack…’”(vs. 21a). And there you have it!

lack correction

They correct you in love so you will not be lacking.

Amongst the many vitally essential lessons to be learned from that one, fifteen-word phrase alone, is that despite what the walking-in-darkness-world (Ephesians 4:17-27) all around us says, thinks, or does, disagreeing with or correcting someone who needs correcting in order to get them either onto, or back onto the straight and narrow pathway to heaven, does NOT mean that the one teaching and/or working to correct them doesn’t love them (2 Tim. 2:24-26) – “Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, ‘One thing you lack…’”. In fact, it means just exactly the opposite – see: Proverbs 3:11-12, 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 13:6; 2 Corinthians 12:15; and Hebrews 12:5-17.

When this seemingly devout and religiously-knowledgeable young man came to ask Jesus for His help with his desire to inherit eternal life, Jesus loved both His own heavenly Father, as well as this young man, way too much to tell him anything other than the absolute truth as to what it was going to take in order to legitimately accomplish that desire. Jesus’ all-consuming love for the young man would not allow Him to stretch, water down,edit or avoid the absolute truth which he so desperately needed to hear – whether he knew it or not,and/or whether he really wanted to hear it or not – in order to make it to heaven. Jesus’ pure and unadulterated love for this young man (whom He would later die to provide forgiveness of sins and eternal life to) demanded that He tell him exactly what the correction was which he needed to make, in order to eventually make it to heaven (“Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, ‘One thing you lack…’”).

The young man’s response to Jesus’ honestly, truthfully, and lovingly answering his inquiry? Exactly what Jesus knew it would be long before He ever gave him the answer to his question…he wasn’t interested; and that in his youthful selfishness and shortsightedness, he would walk away (never to come to his senses and return as far as we know):“But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions” (Vs. 22).

Jesus’ very loving, very honest, and very much-needed response, would require far more from this young man than he was willing to give. It would require the complete surrendering up of his own personal, prideful, and self-serving agenda, pursuits, and possessions. It would demand that he truly put others ahead of himself; and to do so in a most humble, selfless, and Christlike way (Philippians 2:1-8); something which he was just not willing to do – even if it meant losing his long-anticipated and worked for eternal reward.And so, he walked away. And Jesus …just let him go.

Now, make no mistake, Jesus didn’t stop loving the young man – even after His departure. You never see such in Scripture anywhere. He would still die for him. He still loved him. And it surely must have broken Jesus’ heart to see him depart. But He still just let him go. Why? Because that’s exactly what real, godly, Biblical and Christ-like love, by its very nature has to do,with those who prefer their own, self-centered and self-serving pursuits – whether those pursuits pertain to money, power, pleasure, popularity, or a simple and sinful lack of willingness to humble ones’ self and fully submit to the truth of God’s word.Godly love means… letting those who are like that, go. That’s what Jesus did with His disciples who wanted to leave in John 6 – He just let them go… because that’s what godly love does. That’s what the Father of the so-called prodigal son did when His son decided to leave in Luke 15 – He just let him go… because that’s what godly love always does. That’s what godly love always does because that’s what godly love has to do!

The reason why godly love just lets those go who wish to do so is not at all hard to understand. In fact, it makes perfect sense. The reason why, is because we have all lovingly been given the gift of total free will by God; a free will to come, and go, and do as we please – answering for it all in the end of course (John 12:48; Rom. 2:4-10). God, in His all-knowing wisdom, also knows you can’t force a being with complete free will to choose to love you, or to always choose to do the right and godly thing (no matter how much you might love, labor, teach, invest in,or try to get them to). For to do so, would be to rob them of that very same gift of free will which they were given in the first place.

Therefore, if they choose to buy the lie and leave the love, wisdom, training, and correction of the Lord and/or those who love and are sincerely seeking to help correct and get them to heaven(and are hence serving in their best interest), then there is nothing else that true and godly love can do, other than to simply let them go… And then hope and pray that those who have left will somehow, some day, some way,be brought to their knees and hence back to their senses out there in the world like the prodigal son was;all the while turning still-loving and ever-hopeful eyes toward the horizon, for their much anticipated and prayed for, much more humbled and ready-to-do-the-right-thing, return…

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Costa Rica 2020

Costa Rica 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

We are about 2 months away from our Costa Rica Campaign. It is our goal there to spread the gospel and encourage the Saints. This trip will be my fifth and April’s 3rd.  The work is rewarding and the people are very receptive of the Gospel.  We will be heading out in January and will be following up with our work from last year in the area of La Fortuna.  That work resulted in many favorable outcomes and we pray our continued efforts will add to the blessing.

Currently, we are $2560 short of our needs.  If you are able to assist in supporting us, it would be deeply appreciated.  For those of you who have supported us through prayer and/or financial assistance in the past, thank you!  We again ask for your prayerful consideration in supporting this effort to spread the gospel to the people of Costa Rica.

Our total need again this year will be approximately 2,180 apiece for a work of 10 days.

The campaign expenses (approximately) per person are as follows:

  1. Flight – $800
  2. Alajuela 2 nights – $70.00
  3. Accommodations for 7 nights – 225.00
  4. Meals – 10 days @ 40.00/day – $400.00
  5. Translator – $300.00
  6. Airport tax – $25.00
  7. Vehicles and Fuel – $260.00
  8. Food for local Brethren – $100.00

Total $2180.00

We are excited to spread the Gospel message in Costa Rica. We would be happy to answer any of your questions and provide a report after the campaign is completed. Please contact us at 816-341-0659 if you have any additional questions.

Below we have provided information in regard to mailing address and our ability to follow up with those contributing.  We provide a follow up report to all who contribute.

In Christian love,

Travis/April Main

 

Contributor Information

Costa Rica Campaign  January 2020

Travis and April Main  (816) 341-0659

To:       Travis Main

P.O. Box 772

Steelville, Mo65565

 

Contributor Information

Contact Person:   __________________________________

Address:              __________________________________

City/State/Zip:      __________________________________

Phone:                 __________________________________

Amount Enclosed:_______________

Congregation:      ___________________________________

City/State:            ___________________________________

Phone:                 ___________________________________

 

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Global Warming: God The Heavenly Firefighter

Global Warming: God The Heavenly Firefighter

A few days ago, I was studying with a young man who has walked away from the church. During our discussion of what he believes, he said: “I don’t believe their exact theory for the Big Bang. I believe there had to be stuff going on. I believe in some type of superior being out there. I just don’t know how it all got here.”

I followed up by asking the young man, “Okay, so if there is a higher power out there, then what is His role?”

His exact words were, “I think His role is to keep this planet from catching on fire.”

Huh? Say what? God is a heavenly firefighter?  This young man continued by saying, “I think this whole thing with Global warming and stuff, I think if we keep abusing the planet and it keeps heating up, then I feel like the planet is just going to burst into flames and it will be a so-called hell.”

global warming hoax

Man does not control the weather.

For the next few minutes we discussed Global Warming/Climate Change. It was extremely obvious that this young man had bought into the idea of Global Warming hook, line, and sinker. When I asked him where he got his information from he freely admitted his textbooks.

When I asked if he had actually looked into the data and researched whether Global Warming was real, he kind of chuckled and told me everyone knew it was real. (I made sure to share with him some of the real research that clearly pointed out it was a bogus political sham.)

But here was a young man who had been raised in the church who believed that if there was a higher power out there then His only role was to be a heavenly firefighter.

On that very same day, I received a newsfeed that discussed Union Theological Students who had gathered together to confess their sins to plants. Yes, you read that correctly. These students, who were majoring in Bible, gathered together to confess their climate sins. These “progressive” students were taking part of a class titled Extractivism: A Ritual/Liturgical Response.

While many people recognized the ridiculousness and theological bankruptcy of what these seminary students were doing, the Washington Post covered the story and opined, “I think there is a pressing question that many Christians and people of no faith are grappling with: What is our moral responsibility to nonhuman life-forms?” Moral responsibility to plants? Plants are not self-aware and have no conscientious!

Paul warned in Romans 1:25 about people, “who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.” Do your children worship the creation or the Creator? Parents, just how much of the Global Warming Kool-Aid have your children drank?

This goes far beyond recycling and thinking “green.” There are young people today who put caring for the earth far above religion. In fact, Josh McDowell conducted the largest survey ever conducted on Global Warming, and in his survey he discovered young people consider not recycling worse than viewing pornography. I suspect many Christian parents might be surprised to learn just how indoctrinated they are. It’s all throughout the textbooks today.

Do I believe we should be good stewards and dominion keepers over what God has given us (Genesis 1:28)? Absolutely! I believe this is biblical and it is what mature Christians ought to do! But do I think we should be worshipping “Mother Nature” rather than Father God? Not in any form! Our God is a jealous God, and nothing should ever come before Him!

So, am I one of those crazy loons that does not believe in Global Warming? Absolutely! I’ve examined the real data. And I think it is exceptionally arrogant for man to think we can have that much control over the weather and God’s creation (see Psalm 135:7).

In the April 28th 1975, issue of Newsweek the publishers warned the public of the coming Ice Age. Money was appropriated to fund research and now here we are 34 years later consumed with the idea that the earth is warming. Laws are being enacted and once again money is being appropriated.

I asked the question initially what was the motive—and I believe it comes down to one thing: money. Politicians can clamor on for decades with this as a part of their platform, knowing it will be hard to disprove “climate change” and that money will be needed. They recognize no sensible person would advocate destroying the earth. Fear has always been an effective motivator—and that remains true today.

I also think Global Warming allows individuals to overlook or ignore the truth that God is in control. By alarming the world propagandists have been effective at causing many individuals to take their eyes away from God and His power. Unbelievers are trying to satisfy a purpose in their own lives, and climate change has become their purpose. Satan has pulled these individuals into his web of deception. The writer of Proverbs urged mankind to not lean on their own understanding, but rather to trust the Lord (Proverbs 3:5).

The weather we are experiencing today is the result of a global Flood that was delivered to this world because of sin. Prior to that God had described His creation as “Very Good” (Genesis 1:31). As faithful Christians we are to be good stewards His creation (Genesis 1:28; Matthew 25:14-30) in anticipation of the return of Jesus Christ when true Global Warming will occur!

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Degrees of Heaven and Hell in Eternity?

Are there varying degrees of Heaven and Hell?

There’s no biblical evidence that our human spirit will be fundamentally and basically changed after death.  Thus, it’s likely we will be capable of various degrees of satisfaction in eternity, depending upon our capacity for such, since we are capable of different levels of satisfaction in this life.

Eternity happy sad

Whatever you choose by your actions upon this earth, you will deserve the result.

The Bible implies varying levels of reward for the saved.  Jesus’ parable of the 10 minas teaches such (Luke 19:12ff).  He promised to “repay each person according to what he has done” (Matt. 16:27).  “According to” (kata) implies a norm, a standard by which rewards or punishments are given, signifying a proportionately fair dispersal.  Paul knew he would have both joy and glory for converting souls (1 Thess. 2:19-20), yet he also cautioned us to seek true converts over superficial ones because if one’s converts did not endure, he himself would still be saved while also suffering “loss” of the joy and glory of knowing his work of converting those souls would be fruitful for eternity (1 Cor. 3:10ff; cf. Gal. 4:11).  In other words, the more of our converts who endure and finally arrive in heaven, the greater our joy and reward will be.

In like manner, the Bible also implies varying levels of punishment for the condemned.  Cities in Galilee were told it would be “more tolerable” for Tyre, Sidon, and Sodom than for them (Matt. 11:20-24; cf. 10:15).  The knowingly disobedient would be punished more than those who were punished because they ignorantly disobeyed (Luke 12:47-48).  Pilate was told that those who had delivered Jesus to him “have the greater sin” (John 19:11), implying a greater punishment.  Willful, unrepentant sinners under the New Covenant would receive a “worse” punishment than unrepentant sinners under the Old Covenant (Heb. 10:26-31).  The “last state” of apostate Christians would be “worse” than it would have been should they had never been converted in the first place (2 Pet. 2:20-22; cf. 1 Pet. 4:17).

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Joash Stay In Your Lane

Joash Stay In Your Lane

When Amaziah, king of Judah, wanted to meet face to face with Joash, king of Israel, he was warned to stay at home and not “meddle” in some thing that would just bring him harm. Good advice from an evil king.

joash busybody

Mind your own business, don’t seek to meddle in what is not your own.

But the King of kings gives us the same advice even today. By inspiration the apostle Paul instructed that Christians should “aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands”) 1 Thessalonians 4:11. When he wrote his second letter to the church at Thessalonica he said, “We hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies” (2 Thessalonians 3:1).

Seems like mankind has always had this problem. WE tell our children all the time that “it’s none of your business” or “ Mind your own business.” However, where do you think they learn to meddle? Let each of us concentrate on our own business. We will be more productive and less apt to bring harm upon ourselves.

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