Monday, February 15, 2010

2 hot 4 church? Your Questions Answered

2 hot 4 church? Your questions - Answered

During our 2 hot 4 church? Series you submitted several questions you would like more information on. Please note that these are not exhaustive answers to each topic nor are the below scripture references the only scriptures found in the Bible in regards to answering these questions. This is an effort to answer your questions with truth and with brevity.

1. In light of last Sunday’s lesson on family planning are you saying we all have to be Duggarliscious and have nineteen children? No, first not every woman will be physically capable of having that many children and secondly it is God who gives children, God who creates life….not us. See Genesis 1, 29:31, 20:18, Psalm 139-13-14, Psalm 127:3-5

2. Are you saying that birth control and fertility drugs are wrong? No. Not all birth control and fertility drugs are wrong. What I am saying is that believing that we control life is wrong and putting faith and trust in anything other than Jesus is idolatry. Also, some forms of birth control can cause abortions by stopping a fertilized egg from implanting like the morning after pill and the copper and progestasert IUD.

3. Is abortion ever OK? No in the sense of abortion on demand, abortion out of convenience or abortion as a last means of birth control. We make arguments around definitions like – fetus/baby, tissue over a person but the Bible does not make this distinction. Luke 1:41, 1:44, 2:12, 2:16 all use the same Greek word for baby making no distinction between born and unborn. I will not say never as there are rare cases which might warrant such procedures but those are rare – 2004 over 1.2 million abortions performed, 95% were for birth control reasons! Less than 1% were due to the mother’s health and less than 3% due to rape

4. What is the Bible’s view of capital punishment. Yes – See Leviticus and Deuteronomy

5. Is tithing a requirement? Requirement for what? Salvation? No! As believers should we give to support the church God has called us to? Yes above and beyond the tithe. Malachi 3:6-10, Matthew, 10:8, 19:21 – everything we have is given to us freely by God and as His children we are to give freely to those in need

6. Can any of the defendants in the Newsome/Christiansome case go to heaven after committing such horrible acts? What if they become saved while they are in jail? Yes if they are born again. We often say “you must ask Jesus into your heart” but what does that mean? The Bible never uses that language. It does speak of repentance and faith – 2 Corinthians 7:10, 1 John 4:10 Jesus is our propitiation taking on all of God’s wrath at the cross in our place for our sins…all sins, meaning at the time of the cross Jesus became a murder, a thief, a liar, a blasphemer etc and paid the full penalty 1 Peter 3:18 that is why His grace is so amazing!

7. What does the Bible have to say about women preachers? Women are not to be preachers – The Bible clearly outlines the qualifications for pastors/overseers in 1 Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:6 also women are to never be in a teaching position over men 1 Timothy 2:11-12

8. Homosexuality, how do we love the sinner but hate the sin? 1. Remember that homosexuality is a sin, a sin that God hates and has given the death penalty to – Leviticus 20:13, 1 Corinthians 6:9 those who practice will not inherit God’s Kingdom, Romans 1:26-27 against the laws of nature. 2. Love them – pray for them, give them a Bible, invite them to church, small group, Bible Fellowship, share Jesus with them and how only He can save them and how only He alone can forgive them. If they claim to be a follower of Jesus you have to look at 1 Corinthians 5:9-13.

9. What constitutes a Godly sex life with your spouse? How often is normal? What’s OK and what isn’t? The Bible doesn’t give lists of acts that are and aren’t permissible within a marriage and it doesn’t speak to specific frequency. Why? Because of our tendency to take something beautiful, like sex which is a gift from God and to moralize it calling things good and bad and seeing it as a contract verses a loving act between a husband and wife. God’s original plan, Genesis 2:24, is that one man would be united with one woman for one lifetime becoming one flesh and making the Song of Solomon sing which contains some very explicit details. 1 Corinthians 7:1-5 does promote fostering a healthy sex life with your spouse. Yet we live in a culture where many have been sexually abused and used which makes intimacy difficult so you may need to seek counseling to deal with the past, past sins committed by you and committed against you. Also, it is sinful to use your partner as a means to an end – to satisfy your sexual addiction, to perform as a baby maker etc

10. If someone is raised in an Islamic controlled environment, and never has a chance to accept Christ, is that person condemned to hell? What if they live a moral life, they don’t steal, kill, covet, commit adultery, use God’s name in vain, etc. The just live a moral life, but not under Christian or Biblical rules, is that soul condemned? The question posed here really is…can religion save someone? If they follow the rules can they get into heaven? The answer is no. First, the Bible says that there is no one who is or does good – Romans 3:10-12 everyone sins, everyone deserves to be punished, to die, to be condemned. Yet God loves us John 3:16 and has provided one way for us to be forgiven and that is through Jesus. Romans 5:8, 1 Timothy 2:5, Jesus said He is the only way John 14:6 – Therefore the urgency of the great commission is upon us to share with family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, near and far for all who die without Christ die in their sins and will be condemned to hell for eternity. Romans 1:18-23 states that no one is without excuse.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

2 hot 4 church? Family Planning and the Believer - Lesson


What do you consider to be a big decision in your home? How do you make those decisions? What's the process? Do you pray? Rely on past situations? Seek counsel? How do you know when you have made the right decision?

How did you choose your job? Was it because of money or career path?


How did you decide on who to marry? They were breathing and had a heartbeat?


Where to live? Was it because your neighborhood had a pool? Tennis courts?


How did you decide on your church home? Was it based on the music? The preaching? The church's ability to "feed" you?


Have you already planned out what your family will look like with the number of children...one boy for me a girl for you...two and we are through!

All of these are major questions that most of us are dealing with right now and how we answer them has far reaching consequences on our lives...not just for today, but far into the future as well.

Ruth 1:1-5


We see this is in the day when the judges ruled which was a dark time in the history of Israel. The government was corrupt, wicked, and sinful. We also learn that there is a famine in the land which causes Elimilech to begin asking some very tough questions - Do we need to look for another job? Sell our house? Downsize? Do we need to hold off having babies or starting a family for a while? So we see Elimelech take his family and move to Moab.

When hard times hit, Elimilech looses his job, or maybe he starts job hunting and sees that they are hiring in Moab..."look honey, this job in Moab pays really well....has a career path...has two weeks of paid vacation...will be close to shopping for you...right now things are tough...there is a famine...let's go!"

So they loaded up the truck and moved to Moab...swimming pools/movie stars.

So what? Was this a good decision or a bad decision?

Unfortunately it turned out to be a fatal decision for Elimelech and his family. Moab is the city founded by an incestuous relationship between Lot and his daughter, Genesis 19:37. Moab is a perverse city that worships false gods and it is no place for God's people to work or to live.

Yet Ruth 1:2 says they moved there and they remained there and soon after Elimelech dies...the very thing he was trying to avoid when they moved in the first place! Like so many of us he thought he was making a wise decision, providing for his family, leading. Not only did Elimelech die but his two sons ended up marrying Moabite women and died as well leaving Elimelech's wife, Naomi, a widow with two pagan daughter-n-laws in extreme poverty.

Naomi is left alone, no children, no church, no small group, no family, no help, 50 plus miles away from home in a perverse, wicked city.

What began as a seemingly harmless decision to take a job ended up having dire consequences.

World view is described as the filter by which we run all our our thinking through. It is how we see the world, how we process, how we make decisions. Sometimes it is with great thought and consideration yet often it is without thought, subconsciously.

A world view seeks to answer at least three questions: 1. Creation - how? 2. Purpose - why am I here? 3. Correction - can what is wrong be made right?

The predominant worldview today is secular humanism [link]. Secular humanism is seen in almost every commercial, TV show, movie, and unfortunately churches and the lives of believers like you and me.

How does SH answer the three basic questions of creation, purpose, and correction?

1. Creation comes from evolution. You, me, the universe are part of a series of random processes and chance that came about over billions of years.

2. Purpose - our purpose is to eat, drink, and be merry, to consume, make money, buy toys, and he who dies with the most toys wins.

3. Correction - can what is wrong be made right? SH would not say that there is really anything wrong but that the reason people struggle is that they do not have adequate education, or resources, or government.

SH answers the following crucial questions -

What job? The one that makes the most money.


Marriage? Who looks the best or will serve me. Could be one man/one woman, two men, two women...it doesn't matter as long as I am happy.


Where to live? Based on connivance and amenities.


Where to go to church? Don't go! But if you do look for a church that caters to you, meets your needs, has great "programs" that can "feed" you.


Family? No, but if you must do not have more than two children. One child is OK two children is pushing it and any more than that is extreme. SH says that we control life by using birth control and fertility drugs. We say when we have babies and we say how many we will have.

Statistically most couples are waiting longer to have children putting career and money first. SH says that children are a burden, expensive, get in the way and are a problem [link].


My fear is that many of us...God fearing, Jesus loving, Bible toting, Christians...have bought into this worldview hook, line, and sinker.

If that is secular humanism then what is a Biblical worldview? How does it answer the three questions?

1. Creation - Genesis 1:1 - God created by speaking. Genesis 2:7 God created man with His own hands in a very personal intimate way. Genesis 1:26 that everyone is created in the image and likeness of God and that everyone has inherent dignity, value, and worth because we are all image bearers of God. That's why Christians do no support abortion and we do not support assisted suicide.

2. What's our purpose? I love how the Westminster Catechism answers this [link]. "Man's chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever." See Psalm 86, Psalm 16:5-11. Our purpose isn't about buying stuff, toys...it has always been and will always be about God. Knowing God in an intimate, deep, trusting, loving relationship.

3. Correction - can what is wrong be made right? The Bible clearly states our problem is sin. Sin has placed a curse on everything, our relationships with each other, our relationship with God...sin destroys, separates, and kills and the answer to the world's problems isn't more money, education, or government. The Bible tells us that the answer is found in the free gift, John 3:16, of God's love, grace, and mercy found only in Jesus, John 14:6. The Bible says that Jesus will make all things new and will remove the curse from creation and us once and for all, Revelation 21:1-6.


So how does the Bible answer the same questions of work, marriage, home, and family?


The Bible says that when we work we work as towards the Lord, Colossians 3:23, not for money or stuff but as worship to God. The Bible says that marriage is a gift from God, one man and one woman coming together to form one forever, Genesis 2:24. The Bible says that I am in this place at this time because God has ordained it and has plans for me Acts 17:26. The Bible says it is God who builds the church and it is God who calls us to His church and when it comes to family and children the Bible says that it is God who opens the womb, Genesis 29:31 and God who closes the womb, Genesis 20:18.


While there is nothing inherently wrong with most fertility drugs and birth control anyone who places their trust and hope in them is believing in a false gospel and some forms of birth control are abortive by nature with many women murdering their own babies each year without ever knowing it!


The Bible says that children are wonderfully made by God, a heritage, fruit, a reward, joy, and a blessing, Psalm 139:13-14, Psalm 127:3-5. Yet very often we make the decision to limit God's blessings on our lives by limiting the number of children we will have. We say things like:


Children are too expensive.

Children interfere with my career.

My home is not big enough.

Being pregnant will destroy my body.

The time is not right.

Two or fewer children is the responsible thing to do.

Having more than two children is irresponsible.

I won't be able to love more than one, two, three, etc children.


Just so you know none of these reasons are Biblical reasons and all of these are prevalent stances put forth by the world.


When God invites you into His family He invites you into a new life through Jesus, 1 Corinthians 5:17, and He invites you to a new way to live.


How do you make the big decisions in your life? Is it through the filter of secular humanism or is it by filtering everything through God's word?


Some of you in reading this will be convicted of your sinful thinking, decisions, and planning.


Will you turn to Jesus first in repentance and secondly for guidance and direction?


My fear is that many of us will make decisions today and tomorrow without much thought, based on emotion, feelings, not the Bible, and just like Elimelech reap the sad fruit of those decisions.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

2 hot 4 church? Open Line Sunday - Your Questions Answered


This Sunday we will conclude our 2 hot 4 church? series by answering your questions about alcohol, sexual immorality, family planning or any other question you might have about the Bible, theology, etc.

Text any question you have about today’s lesson to – 99503 in the body of the text please use 96840

Example: “96840 If God didn’t want me to eat cows why did He make them out of meat?”

All submissions are anonymous.
Here are just a couple of recent submissions -
1. Are you saying that birth control and fertility drugs are wrong and using them are sinful?

2. Will there be wine in heaven? Is it sinful to drink on earth but not in heaven?

3. Are you telling me that I have to be all Duggarliscious and have 19 kids?

This promises to be fun.
See you Sunday.

Family Planning and the Believer - Is Birth Control a Sin?

The world will tell you that children are a burden, lots of work, and expensive. Secular Humanism will tell you that having one child is OK, having two children is acceptable but that any more is irresponsible both to society and to the planet. In fact a recent article states that having children is the single largest contributor to green house gas emissions [link] and that the best way to combat global warming is by not having children.

As believers and followers of Jesus, born into the family of God by His blood we are confronted with mixed messages and complex choices as more and newer technologies and advancements in science are available to us. Often we make decisions based on the advice of trusted doctors or take the counsel of Godly friends, or walk in the ways of those around us...never asking or praying if our decisions are in line with God's word.

If you are married and if you are taking birth control and if you are a born again believer there are things you need to know about birth control. You need to make informed, prayerful decisions.

Here is a sermon from Mars Hill Church in Seattle where pastor Mark addresses this question in great detail.



Blessings!

Monday, February 1, 2010

ONE is now using Twitter!

We currently use the following means to communicate to the class:

1. Website – http://www.sevierheights1.blogspot.com/,
2. Facebook
3. Email.

Some of you may not be able to frequently check your email, log into Facebook or visit our website so we are now utilizing Twitter as another way to communicate.

What is Twitter?

Twitter is a free resource – www.twitter.com – where you create your own account, much like Facebook. Once you have registered you can then add people or organizations to your account to follow. By adding our class and church to your Twitter account you can now receive text message updates wherever you are even without access to the web.

Why use Twitter?

Did I mention that Twitter is free? Twitter is a great way to communicate to a large group of people, quickly without having to directly access the web.

How do I follow ONE using Twitter?

Once you create your free account at – www.twitter.com – go to our link - https://twitter.com/oneshbc - and add us to your account. Make sure you check the box next to our site that allows you to receive mobile updates.

It’s that easy!

You can also hit the follow me button below or on the right of the page and it will take you directly to Twitter.

Follow oneshbc on Twitter

Snow Happens - Revised Schedule


So the local meteorologists were right...we did get snow! Did you and your family have a chance to play outside? Did you build a snowman? Go sledding? Or did you use the weather as an excuse to sleep in, wear your snowflake sweater, and drink large mugs of hot chocolate with marshmallows?

Weather permitting we will pick up where we left off this Sunday in our 2 hot 4 church? series.

To bring you up to speed we have already covered Alcohol and the Believer [link] and Sexual Immorality and the Believer [link].

This Sunday we will cover Family Planning and the Believer.

Sunday, February 14 we will do our class breakfast and wrap up our 2 hot 4 church? series by answering your questions about the Bible, Church, Jesus.

Have a question?

Text any question you have to – 99503 in the body of the text please use 96840

Example: “96840 If God didn’t want me to eat cows why did He make them out of meat?”


See you Sunday