Salvation

Do you worry about moral decay in America and the world?


Recently I read a very disturbing article, captioned: “What is this world coming to?” The article arrived in my Inbox, and I believe Stephen Altrogge whom I do not know wrote it.

Obviously, Stephen is a follower of Jesus Christ, and he is every bit as concerned as most of us are about the moral decay of our society and the world in general.

Here are some excerpts of what Stephen writes:

“Every so often I hear someone say in despair, “What is this world coming to?” This kind of comment usually comes in response to a doomsday report of some sort.
1. Statistics shows that kids are more sexualized now than ever and that 70% of kids will have sex before graduating high school!
2. A new report says that 45% of Americans think that God wants them to be happy more than anything else!
3. A pew poll report shows that church attendance is at the lowest mark in twenty years!

When we hear these kinds of reports and stats, our gut instinct can be to throw our hands up in despair, panic, or disgust. We are shocked at the behavior of young people these days. Shocked at the levels of immorality at universities. Shocked at the apathy of people toward spiritual things. Shocked at the spike in gay marriages. Shocked at the smut being produced by Hollywood. Shocked at the increase in sexual promiscuity in our culture. What is this world coming to?”

The apostle Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, warned us about these things. In a letter to Timothy, he writes the following:

“You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. 2 For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 3 They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. 4 They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure than God. 5 They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!

6 They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires. 7 (Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.) 8 These teachers oppose the truth just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses. They have depraved minds and a counterfeit faith. 9 But they won’t get away with this for long. Someday everyone will recognize what fools they are, just as with Jannes and Jambres” (2 Timothy 3:1-9).

So, my good friends, do not be dismayed about the troubling things you see today. The worst is yet to come. But if you stayed committed and faithful to God, the one who gave up His only Son as a ransom for your sins, then at the end you will hear the words, ‘Well done thou good and faithful servant.’

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Why do you worship God?


Victoria Osteen, wife of mega church pastor, Joel , may have redefined the purpose and reason Christians worship God. In one of their recent weekly broadcast, Victoria raised eyebrows in the Christian community when she said the following:

“I just want to encourage every one of us to realize when we obey God, we’re not doing it for God—I mean, that’s one way to look at it—we’re doing it for ourselves, because God takes pleasure when we’re happy. That’s the thing that gives Him the greatest joy… So, I want you to know this morning: Just do good for your own self. Do good because God wants you to be happy,” she continued. “When you come to church, when you worship Him, you’re not doing it for God really. You’re doing it for yourself, because that’s what makes God happy. Amen?”

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Are you a modern day Pharisee?


The Pharisees in Jesus’ time were revered by the people, but Jesus had very harsh words for them.

These pompous, holier than thou men towered over the people like mighty guardians. They were members of a religious sect who often clashed with Jesus over His interpretation of the Law.

The name Pharisee means (separated one). Hence, the Pharisees separated themselves from society to study and teach the law, but they also separated themselves from the common people and labelled them religiously unclean.

Regardless, the Pharisees commanded respect from the masses because of their pious persona. Still, Jesus was not impressed. He saw them as empty shells and scolded the group for unnecessary punishments they placed on the poor.

In a scathing rebuke of the Pharisees found in Matthew 23 and Luke 11, Jesus called them hypocrites and exposed their sins. He compared the Pharisees to whitewashed tombs, which are beautiful on the outside but  are filled with dead men’s bones and uncleanness on the inside.

 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. ” (Matthew 23:13).

“Woe to you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore the more important aspects of the law—justice, mercy, and faith. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things” (Matthew 23:23).

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs that indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness” (Matthew 23:27-28).