MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

The Problem With the Culture Argument

February 25th, 2008 Viewed 2929 times

Bible Header

There are many things in the Bible that we do not adhere to in today’s church.  We do not teach them as commands.  We don’t encourage people to follow them.  We try to ignore that they are even in the Bible.  And we do this because they are counter-cultural and inconvenient.

And this is part of the reasons that Christians aren’t taken seriously.  I can’t tell you how many conversations I have gotten into with unbelievers that follow this basic order:

  • We’ve all sinned and the Bible defines sin.
  • The Old Testament says that you shouldn’t do XYZ.
  • You do XYZ.
  • Aren’t you sinning?

And then after trying to get out of that one, the real fun begins.

But It’s Not My Problem!

July 19th, 2007 Viewed 7815 times

It’s inevitable.  Whenever a conversation is started and modesty is brought up– especially if women are told to cover up– some lady will say something like “It’s not my problem if he is lusting after me.  After all, I can’t control his mind!”

However, we must keep in mind that we’re not only responsible for ourselves, we’re responsible for others.  I mean, central to the whole Christian theme is Christ’s command to love one another.  How can we love one another if we are not concerned with how what we do effects other people?  And if Christ can say that looking on a woman to lust is sin, and we don’t want our brothers to sin, then we should do our part to prevent the opportunity to sin– and I think that’s the key.

Three other passages talk to us about the duty we have to our brothers and sisters:

Cain and Able

Genesis 4:9 – And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?

Cain was caught red handed.  He had just killed his brother because God preferred the offering that obeyed His commands rather than just bringing the best of whatever was available.  So, the first murderer tries to shirk his responsibility by saying that it wasn’t “my turn to watch him” and hoping to absolve himself from the responsibility.

The only problem was that God knew what had happened, and he also knew that Cain should have been concerned about his brother.  So, the answer to the question is yes, Cain.  You are.  You were the oldest.  You also knew about his offering, so you were aware of him and responsible for those things that you were aware of.

Stronger and Weaker Brother

Romans 14:15 – But if thy brother be grieved with thy meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died.

Paul is in the middle of a brilliant discourse on freedom in Christ.  He it talking to the Romans about how, under Christ, we are at liberty not to be under the ceremonial law, how we can eat meat that has been offered to idols, and how we don’t have reverence certain days– but there is a catch.  We must do everything to the glory of God.  So, if we can’t eat that meat and give glory to God, then we should not eat it to the glory of God.  Get it?

What’s important in this passage, though, is the dynamic between those that believe that they can eat meat and those that do not.  It would be the same as some of the more modern dilemmas– should Christians go to movie theaters?  Should they go to the video store?  Should they own a television?  I can find people that believe all of these are scriptural principles and believe that they are glorifying God by their abstinence.  But what should we do if we are less strict?

Paul says that we should not put a stumbling block in front of our brother.  So, in other words, if my brother believes that he shouldn’t go to a movie theater, I shouldn’t take his wife and him out to dinner, and then drive over to the theater with purchased tickets and try to talk him into going inside.  That doesn’t mean that I should forsake everything because someone might have a problem with it, but it does mean that I should be paying attention to the standards and principles that people have and make sure that I do not intentionally present them with opportunities to violate their conscience.

And for those that are weaker, they should not judge the stronger for those things that fall outside of the clear boundaries of Scripture.

Bear One Another’s Burdens

Galatians 6:2 – Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.

Simply, how can we bear one another’s burdens if we do not know what they are?  If we’re not involved in someone’s life, how can we fulfill this command?

So, How Does This Apply?

Simply put, ladies, it is your problem because you are to be concerned about what is going through the mind of the Christian brothers that are around you.  However, men, don’t think you’re getting off easy.  You see, we are also responsible for what we see, and how we look at the ladies around us.

We’ve been teaching my children the song “Oh Be Careful” and as you know, the first verse is talking about your eyes.  Men, in a highly sexualized culture, we must be careful about what we look at.  We need to make sure that what we allow ourselves to look at is something we should be looking at.  You see, the more we see, the more desensitized we become to those that are around us.  And the world definitely wants us to see the “ideal” look rather than the “real” look.

By constantly letting ourselves look at women’s bodies we are programming our mind to accept that– and to let our mind memorize or even visualize things we should not.  Our Christian sisters can only do so much to help us guard against temptation.  It is up to us as men to train ourselves to look away, to avoid places of temptation, and to encourage the women that we have influence in their lives to dress in a manner fitting the child of the King.

Godly Husband: You Must Be Born Again

November 20th, 2006 Viewed 4683 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgMen, the first step in having a strong and healthy marriage is to first make sure that you have been saved from your sins and that you are following Christ.

There are many things that will come up in your marriage: finances, children, decisions, etc.  You and your wife will have differences of opinion on these things, but if you have the same Lord and Savior, you will be able to rally around and look to Jesus for the answers to the tough ones.

The Generational Effect

October 2nd, 2006 Viewed 4535 times

Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God [am] a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth [generation] of them that hate me; – Exodus 20:5

This is pretty scary to me on one level. Notice, it’s the sins of the fathers that the Lord would visit on the children unto the third and fourth generation. This tells me a couple of things.

First, that God places real importance on what the father does, for it’s his sin that’s visited, not the mothers.  We saw this yesterday with Adam and Eve.  More importantly, we see it throughout the Old Testament where, especially a king, whole families were judged for what the father did.  Remember Achan?  In the book of Joshua, the children of Israel were commanded not to take of the spoil of Jericho, and yet Achan did.  Because of that sin, Achan and his whole family were destroyed.  God takes sin seriously.

God Told Adam…

October 1st, 2006 Viewed 5953 times

I was talking a couple of weekends ago with a friend, and the discussion turned to Creation, the Fall, and other related issues and it caused me to think more about just how much responsibility God gave to man and just why Paul laid so much at the father’s feet in a family. I’d like to take this opportunity to look through some Bible passages with you and see just what fathers and husbands have to be responsible for. Just so you know how we’ll go about this study, I’m going to do searches for fathers and husbands in the Bible and then address passages that talk about a father’s or husband’s responsibility.

I do want to start out with the one that got me going, just to get you thinking.

Fashion’s Effect on Men and Women

August 31st, 2006 Viewed 41277 times

Warning- You may find the original photo offensiveIt is no secret that the culture today is pressing onto men and women a certain look— and that look is not one of inner beauty, but it is an appeal to the carnal desires of the world. God made men and women to be appealing to one another to look upon– for obvious reasons. But ever since the fall, there have had to be barriers put into place to protect us from inappropriate desires and to lead to sexual thoughts and sin.

Indeed, for as long as there has been modest clothing, there has been immodest clothing. If we take a chance to look back through history we will find that prostitutes (no, it’s not the world’s oldest profession, since Adam could be considered a farmer or engaged in husbandry even before there was a woman on the face of a planet) were identifiable. Why these women chose to do this is a discussion for another time, my point is that they dressed in a way to advertise what they were selling, and it was clear what they were doing.

A Wise Heart Will Seek God

August 4th, 2006 Viewed 3693 times

Which WayIn order to know how to evade his plight, David looked at it the plight in two different ways– as a person and as a prince. As a person, David clung to the fact that God was merciful, compassionate and just. His unchanging nature condemned David when he was in sin, but was also something that David could cling to when David was in trouble. David knew that if he put his faith in the Lord, if He trusted in God alone, God would have to get the glory and God would take care of him.

Homosexuality is Sin

May 6th, 2005 Viewed 1733 times

Happy CoupleI was reading Mona Charen’s latest article today, and something struck me as interesting. She was discussing the school in Maryland and their sex ed class. The curriculum seemed to have a pretty glaring contradiction, and on this note we’ll end our series looking at the Biblical Role of the Sexes.

Early in the article, the curriculum states that “[M]ost experts in the field have concluded that sexual orientation is not a choice”. Later on, it also states regarding the transgender movement that “biology is not destiny”. For sake of argument, doesn’t that mean that just because one was “born a homosexual” does not mean that they have to be one?

The Frog in the Pot

July 10th, 2004 Viewed 2305 times

Frog In Hand

The old saying goes, if you want to cook a live frog, place the frog in a pot of cold water and gradually raise the temperature. The frog will not notice the gradual increase in temperature and will cook. However, if you place him in hot water, he will jump out right away.

Our society has been gradually taken down a road that would shock anyone from a few centuries ago. Pick a subject, and you can find it.

Light vs. Darkness

March 30th, 2004 Viewed 1626 times

Light is used as a mark of holiness or right living. Consider, if you will, John 3. Jesus tells Nicodemus that men love darkness better than light because their deeds are evil. He also states that man do good deeds in light for them to be seen. Jesus also states in Matthew’s Gospel that we are to be lights to the world.

So, make sure that you’re doing your work in the light, for the light, to be a light, and to eradicate darkness.

Red light buld in darkness

Red light buld in darkness (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.