Wednesday Testimony – Voddie Baucham

Dear ones, this, like most testimonies, was a cause for tears. Dr. Voddie Baucham is one of those preachers that commands a room without trying to, with his deep booming voice, impressive beard, and intimidating size. However, every time I hear this great man preach I never go away from it considering Baucham greatness, but Gods. This is because the center focus of this mans life is to bring glory to God, and you can hear it begin in his testimony.

Somehow, sharing the Gospel with our family is more difficult, and seemingly shows less fruit. Often times, because our family knows who we were, it’s the change in us that makes the greatest difference in our conversations. But for many of us, our families are not near us enough to see that change. When Voddie talks here, in his testimony below, about his family back in California I wonder how hard it was for him to reach them. Don’t we all have those relatives that are so far away from us that we’re not sure how to reach them? Voddie friend, such an important part of his testimony, has some great advice. I hope it will bless you as much as it blessed me. As always beloved brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

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Monday Creation Science – Humanities Family Tree: Dr. Purdom’s Lectures

Hello everyone, I hope this post has found you all doing well! I realize I have not posted in quite some time, I apologize for my absence. We’re still waiting for housing, hanging out in hotels, and site seeing. All four of us jammed into a small room filled with luggage and beds make my inability to focus on what to write a lot harder. So, rather than give you a confused explanation of the next “branch” in our family tree I thought I’d share some very helpful lectures.

Dr. Georgia Purdom is a geneticist that works for Answers in Genesis. She’s one of my favorite modern scientists, not just because she’s a Biblical young earth creationist, but also because she’s really good at explaining things to my level. In the videos below, she deals with Adam and Eve. Particularly, she goes through the evidence for their literal existence. There is a great deal of professing Christians that suggest Genesis is poetry, or stories for moral examples, rather than historical narrative. Many will say God used evolution over millions of years to get man from ape ancestors. This comes with steep consequences, such as calling our Lord and Savior a liar, as He frequently talked about Genesis. It alters or does away with, fundamental doctrines of the faith, like original sin.

We do not, and should not, base our faith in scientific evidence. The Bible is our standard and authority, the Word of God is where we stake our claim to salvation by the grace of God alone. We enjoy science, we study science and praise God when we see how He has designed things. His creation cries out, as a witness to His existence. As such, especially when we discuss the “evolution” of man, we can look and see that He has left us without excuse. Science has failed utterly to show mans evolving but has found some truly beautiful evidence of Creation. I hope these lectures will bless you as much as they blessed me, and I hope to be back to a normal posting schedule soon. As always, beloved brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Two Year Anniversary!

I got a little notification that today is the two year anniversary of my blog! How exciting is that? Two years learning and growing with you all, my beloved brothers and sisters in Christ! I’m a blessed young woman to have you all to edify and encourage me. I pray the Lord continues to allow us each to grow in the grace and the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ!

We’re still waiting on housing here in northern Idaho, bouncing around from cabin to hotel until things get situated. I’m sorry my posts have been so infrequent. I hope you are all doing well! As always dear friends, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Stuck On a Mountain – Travel Update

Hello all, I hope this post finds you doing well. We finally made it to our next destination. Northern Idaho. For the majority of the trip it was quiet, tranquil, with everything moving smoothly. We saw Glacier National Park which was so much more beautiful in person than the pictures show! Unfortunately, as we drove east through Montana, our technology failed us. IPhone directions took us off the highway onto a one lane street and up into a mountain. The road was rough but drivable until it suddenly changed to snow covered dirt road. We got stuck, but by unhitching our u-haul we were able to get out and kept going about another mile. Then we got stuck in much deeper snow. We tried for a couple hours and eventually had to give up the fight. It was going to get dark, so we loaded up and started walking back down the mountain.

Kayliegh had an absolutely blast, pretending we were on an adventurous nature hike. We finally made it to a house, back off the road a bit, with solar panels, a generator, and lots of dogs parking. No one was home. We kept walking and the owner of that home drove up. He was a retired sniper, who had been shot in Afghanistan. Dear ones, all down that mountain I prayed and sang hymns, wondering why we were unable to get out of that snow. Then our new buddy Will pulls up and is the kindest human being I have ever come across, along with his neighbor Jerry, who has been pulling families off that mountain since GPS started. It’s always had the directions wrong, and no one has taken the time to fix it. Will set us up a bonfire, offered us blankets, water, and food, then went to get Jerry. Jerry showed up with a huge tractor, and took my husband up the mountain to get our truck back.

While they were gone Will sat and told us stories of all the other families that had gotten stuck like we had. He also told us the history of the mountain and how it was populated. Once our truck was ready and back down the mountain these two friends gave us directions and sent us on our way. I’ve never been shown so much hospitality in all my life. We’re here, safely, and I thank God for His kindness in stopping us before we got so far they wouldn’t have been able to get us out. I thank God that we didn’t encounter any wolves, bears, or mountain lions. I thank God that He showed me what it means to be a neighbor. I hope that this story blesses you all as much as it has us. As always, beloved brethren, be good Bereans and study to show yourselves approved.

The Problem with Princesses

Friday before last, dear ones, I mentioned that I had three different topics swirling around my head. Unfortunately, whatever the third one was, it’s gone and only the second remains. Today I’d like to discuss the issues that come with a culture soaked in princess tales. Originally I thought this must only affect young girls, but with the feminization of men, I think the problem will, in the future, be more widespread. Certainly, the ideas behind what I’m going to talk about are already cultural norms. I’ll use the term ‘princess’ as a reference to nearly every movie geared towards children. Even the superhero genre has the same basic principles as what I’m meaning when I say ‘princess’. Let’s look at this issue topically, how it affects marriage, parenting, work ethic, church life, and evangelism. I realize those last two categories seem similar, but in essence what I’m saying is how we treat each other as believers, and how we share the Gospel with the lost.

Let me start with what the actual problem is, and how pervasive it’s become. Princess movies all start and end with the same premise, that if you want something bad enough you’ll get it. Just believe in yourself. You can accomplish anything, you can be anything, and you deserve it all! It’s such utter nonsense that even in these movies the main character has to have help, usually from magical creatures. What an odd paradox, you can be anything you want to be if you only believe in yourself…but its impossible unless you have someone or something making it happen for you. To turn it even more on its head, we see the new trend of making the assumed good guy end up the villain, then the bad guy swoops in and saves the day. In every type, genre, and decade, these ‘princess’ movies push morals that are man-centered, and goals that are unrealistic.

How does this affect marriage? Love in these ‘princess’ movies is better described as ‘puppy love’. It often gives the impression that to be happy means to be adored. Some movies even go further, making the romance more of an unhealthy obsession. Young people in our culture, rather than preparing for adulthood and the difficulties of marriage, are out searching for ‘true love’. When that standard is impossible to reach, they often become disenfranchised with the institution of marriage and prefer to live together, treating one another as expendable. This obviously leaks into parenting, with couples who live together far more likely to split, even after having children. I’m a product of that type of relationship, many of us are. Divorce, or separation, compounds the disillusionment young people feel when it comes time to choose their own spouse.

Parenting, as I mentioned, is grossly affected by the impressions left from these movies. Its effect can be felt in two ways. As children, these movies change the way we view our elders. Often one parent is missing, sometimes both have died or left, very rarely are both parents present. When parents are there, they are usually treated with contempt, especially if there’s a dad. Modern movies treat fathers like complete buffoons. It’s worse when grandparents are involved, often having their age mocked rather than honoring their wisdom. Whether you realize it or not, this is teaching them how to treat you. The second way this affects viewers happens when they, themselves, become parents. When young girls grow up and get married they often treat their husbands like the idiots they saw portrayed in movie fathers growing up. Children then see mommy is boss in the movies, and in real life, who needs to listen and respect daddy? There’s no clear, beautiful, loving partnership between the parents. Why would any young man, seeing that, look forward to marriage? Or raising a family? Worse then this, the father of a family is the child’s first example of God the Father. No wonder so many feel comfortable blaspheming.

The third issue is the work ethic. Work ethic. What’s that? It’s when someone treats their employer with enough respect to actually work while they’re being paid to work. Getting there on time, not leaving early, not moving at a snail’s pace so that you can do as little as possible without getting fired. I had zero work ethic before getting saved, but if you had asked me I would have told you how great of an employee I was. I mean, I was late but I showed up! Funny how we think, we often see others faults while managing to ignore our own. Hard work is made to be a huge inconvenience in many of these movies if work is shown at all. Most of the time there’s a short montage of activity, then BAM the princess achieves what she wants! Magic, magical creatures, or help from regular woodland rodents, handle most of the grunt work. Today, everyone wants to be boss, no one wants to earn it. Who needs to earn it, when you were told your whole life all you need to do is believe? It’s yours, you want it, you deserve it! Isn’t that how real life works? No. Also, friends, not working to the best of your ability when being paid to do so is not just a bad witness, it’s theft. You’ve made an exchange when you get hired, your labor for their pay. If you take their pay without giving the labor, you’ve stolen from them.

After a childhood of fairytales, we grow up to adults pretending the spotlight is on us. This means when many go to church they take and never give. My church back home is tiny, tucked into the middle of woods that are already in the middle of nowhere. The pastor and his wife work tirelessly, almost everyone who comes is impoverished, widowed, or ill. There are a handful of millennials who come with their parents are grandparents. When there is a special occasion and the elders have all provided food, these younger folks eat and leave. They leave behind a big mess. That big mess gets cleaned up by those impoverished, widowed, and ill church members alongside the pastor and his wife. They take, they never give. This should not be the case, ever, at any age, least of all when your old enough to know better and healthy enough to help. We show the change worked within us to the world through our love for one another. Christianity isn’t a fairytale, we’re not living in a film, we ought to give preference one to another, not all to one.

Lastly, I want to discuss how these movies change the way we evangelize. I don’t remember the last time I saw a movie that didn’t smack of postmodernism. Your truth is your truth, my truth is my truth unless you don’t support abortion, sex change, and same-sex marriage. If that’s the case, your truth is evil and your a bigot that needs to be silenced! Everything is tolerated, except what they disagree with. That’s got nothing to do with the movies, I just added that for free. Postmodernism does have a lot to do with what we’re seeing, and the idea has infiltrated the church. The Gospel has been slowly watered down since Charles Finney took to manipulative means rather than trusted the Holy Spirit to work in the heart of the lost. The current idea that God loves you, so invite Him into your heart and He’ll make you happy, has come from decades of Biblical erosion. It now, often, is couched with a postmodern swing. We find that swing repeated in princess movie after princess movie, you are loved because you deserve to be loved. Your special. You’re the star of your own film. Of course, God loves you, and wants good things for you, who wouldn’t? What does that have to do with postmodernism? Your truth is true for you, but if we go any further than telling someone God loves them we might offend their truth.

Here’s the conclusion, the actual truth of the matter. Not my truth, because if everyone has their own truth, the word becomes meaningless. There are things that are true. There are things that are false. The truth is that life is hard, marriage is hard, parenting is hard, work is hard and that’s why they don’t call it play. Life is full of beautiful moments, its full of difficult moments, but we’re here to glorify God and make Him known. We’re not here to be the star of the show, we must preach the Gospel, die, and be forgotten. He must increase, we must decrease, die to self, love one another, love the lost. In most countries of the world our brothers and sisters in Christ are suffering, going without, being imprisoned, or martyred for their faith and for love of one another. We can’t even stay after the potluck and fold chairs? We can’t even love the lost enough to share the truth with them, while we still have the freedom to do so? Brethren, this ought not to be so. Culture is pervasive, it slips in bit by bit, until the body of believers is so dull of hearing that it needs milk when it should be eating meat. It needs teaching when it should be taught.

If you are reading this and are a Millennial or Latch-key kind of adult do not follow this trend. Watch the older believers, look for ways to be a blessing, look for opportunities to learn from them. If you are older than the Latch-keys and you’re reading this, please…help! The Bible specifically tells the older generations of men to teach the younger, the same for the women. Older women, find young ladies in your church and in your family to disciple, same for the men finding young men. Yes, I know, we’re an obnoxious group of know-it-alls, but it won’t take long before the first crisis hits. The baby won’t sleep, the spouse is mad, the parent is in the hospital, the job is hard, the bills are huge, tax season comes along, life will hit and none of what we learned in princess movies will help. But you can, and you can specifically do this with Godly wisdom. Let me encourage both groups to be Biblical, the younger are told to learn from the older, the older to teach the younger. If you’re reading this, and you blog, you’ve already started this process! Many of you have taught me diligently.

Places We Ought Not Go

Usually, on Thursday I like to review books for you all, dear ones. Unfortunately, I was unable to finish the book I’m working on in time for this. However, I did catch a very interesting two-part interview that I felt warranted a special post. This isn’t necessarily a review of the interview, but more like a warning and an opening up of dialogue on the topic. Many of you are older in the faith than I am, which blesses me more than I could say in a thousand posts! When topics like this come along, they make me very nervous. I have a tendency to get a little off balance when something reminds me of my childhood. You’re steadfast corrections, sometimes in comments, other times in your own posts, edify me greatly! With that in mind, today I’d like to talk about the dark side of ’spirituality’.

Let me give you some background as to why this topic makes me so uncomfortable. Just before the last chapter are links to the aforementioned two-part interview. This is an Apologia connected broadcast, as you’ll see Jeff Durbin involved in the first part. They are interviewing a man who was saved out of the New Age movement, and I praise God for that! Here is a young man who was making a lot of money, at a young age, who was so struck by his own sin that he repented and put his faith in Christ alone. He then repented publically and called his many hundreds of thousands of followers to leave the New Age movement. These are very encouraging things to hear! That being said, it was the most difficult two hours I’ve spent in a long time. It cost me no small amount of sleep as well, with the flood of horrid childhood memories that seemed to be endless, bringing me repeatedly to prayer. The things he describes in his interview sound an awful lot like what I grew up hearing.

At this point, some of you may be wondering why I would bring these interviews to you in a post when they were clearly so disturbing. Hang in there with me, dear ones, I promise I’ll get to that. I’ve mentioned before that I was raised in a pagan, Wiccan, household. There were oils, crystals, books on spells, being spiritually awakened, leaving the body, and the likes, all over our shelves. I knew more, as a child, about astral-projection than I did about math. Our house was a dark, and frightening home, as full of fear as it was New Age items. There’s no such thing as a ’good’ witch or good magic, its all against God, and it all has the same consequences. As a result, even early into our teens, my sister and I would bring a blanket and pillow into our mother’s room to sleep on the floor by her, just to stem the fear. I don’t want to get into the details, the world has a strange fixation on this topic that I hate to feed. This is where the balance is hard for me, should I even be discussing these things? Lost people are being drawn into this world, as believers we need to understand enough to help, and to reach them with the Good News. That’s as far as I could go in my suggestion to learn more about this topic.

So, now you know what we’re talking about, and why I find it such a difficult topic to discuss. I’d like to offer a less detailed, and disturbing, alternative to the interview. This is for anyone who is uncomfortable with the topic, or hearing the details of such. This is something we need to be able to address, but if you’re not directly witnessing to those deep into the New Age occult then this will dip your toes in enough to make you aware. It will also help you to know what the Bible has to say, and how to answer those who believe in aliens. There’s not a difference in how these things play out, whether it’s ghost hunting, aliens, or the occult. It’s all coming from and leading to the same place. Here is that less detailed, but still very thorough video.

When I say less detailed, I mean they don’t go into descriptions of the varies areas of practice within the New Age community. Whether it’s taking drugs to channel aliens, or to channel spirits, the groups are all aiming in the same direction. These people are all, like the young man in the interview below explains, searching for that secret knowledge. That gnostic pride in knowing what those ’mindless’ Christians don’t know. Most were raised in homes where the name of God was at least spoken of respectfully. The generations since postmodernism mixed with New Age through mass media and influencers like Oprah, have no idea how dangerous this is. They didn’t grow up in it, they want something more exciting then church, and no amount of fog or guitar solos will change that. Now pragmatic ’churches’ are quickly adopting New Age language, aided by hotbeds of heresy like Bethel. That’s not new, my friends, it’s just becoming more popular.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=quhgfEUq834

How do I know it’s not new? I don’t think I’ve spent much time discussing the church where my mother was converted. We were both baptized there. Shortly after, they began to adopt the New Age language. Freshly free from the chains on witchcraft, this did a lot more than making my mother uncomfortable. She mentioned it, it was brushed off. She warned the leaders, that was ignored. She finally told the pastor she had been a Wiccan for years, that these phrases weren’t harmless, that the church should have nothing to do with that darkness. We were told to leave. She spent several years after that learning everything she could, so that she could warn other churches about the same dangers. After a while, the weight of it all, on top of major health issues, stopped her. I feel for her, everyone wants to hear about the haunting, terrifying nights, no one wants to hear the warning behind the story.

This brings me to why I felt the need to share this interview with you. We need to be warned ourselves, there are things we should not watch, places we ought not go as new creations in Christ, and phrases that should not be mixed with Biblical language. We need to be clear, we need to be separate, and we need to be vigilant. Our children have full access to this wicked information at the touch of a button. The world has an obsession with spiritual powers in heavenly places, not God, not our Savior, but the darkness, the frightening, the mysterious. We need to be able to warn our families, our churches, and the lost. Again, if you’re sensitive to the details, or uncomfortable at all, please don’t watch these. While this subject is very important, the video above shares the same rebuttal in a different fashion, without the explanations into the frightening New Age practices and their consequences. If, on the other hand, you have friends or family involved in these practices and want to witness to them, these two videos will be a great aid. Either way, whether you listen or not, we need to warn against these things entering our churches. A great resource for that is Justin Peters Ministry, he deals with the subtle, and not so subtle, ways this is seeping into the church. Paul Flinn also does a great job here, again addressing the influence New Age has on the church. The two links below are the best explanation and discussion on what the New Age is and how we can reach those lost in it.

Please, again, be warned that there are some details in these interviews that are disturbing. At the very end of the second one the young man gives an encouragement to those sharing the Gospel with someone lost in this movement. He tells us not to think those we talk to are unaware of their state before God. Though the lost may say they don’t believe, or don’t care, they truly know. They suppress that truth in unrighteousness. I found that to be very helpful. I hope this post was balanced enough to encourage, and edify my brothers and sisters in Christ. If you have stumbled onto this post and you are, yourself, in the New Age movement please listen to these interviews. Know that God has given only one way for salvation and that is through the Son. As always, beloved brethren, be good Bereans and study to show yourselves approved.

Twisted Tuesday – Foreknowledge

Hello all, I hope this post has found you doing well. As I mentioned in my last Twisted post, when I study and read Gods Word I’m often reminded of errant theology taught to me during my decade-plus time as a goat amongst the sheep. When I was first saved by Gods grace I had a deep desire to understand as much as I possibly could about this God that would rescue a wretch like myself. I wanted to know His attributes, to hear His word, to rid myself of all the misconceptions I had of Christianity. I never let go of the first verse I read as a new creation, 1 Corinthians 8:2.

We have a tendency, as sons and daughters of Adam, to sinfully let knowledge puff us up. I certainly was full of pride, and ego, before God rescued me from the chains of sin and death. I had no idea of the tremendous amount of knowledge that I didn’t know. Who God is, what He has done, why He has done it, how can we know, all these subjects to study and only one little me! I lost sleep, in my deep desire to understand, I let my daily ministry of serving my family slip. I skipped meals, prayer, devotion, I forgot to grocery shop, pay bills, and organize homeschooling lessons. I dug and dug, and frustratingly came back with opinions ranging from what I know today is rank heresy, to the actual truth. I didn’t know what I didn’t know. I needed structure, discipline, and patience, but instead ended up falling into legalism. God is kind to His children, He prunes us, His rod and His staff comfort us, He patiently sanctifies us.

I had to throw it all out, friends, and start from the foundations of my faith, slowly building on the Rock. Everything I knew, or thought I knew, had to be checked against Gods Word. So, with that being said, you can imagine how overjoyed I am when I hear solid preachers teaching on the attributes of God! The Father’s foreknowledge isn’t discussed much in the groups I learned from before being born again. However, it was described exactly how Dr. Lawson says it is in the clip below. As if God had looked through time, learned what man would do, and went from there. Now, knowing that God does not learn, His attributes show that He is all knowing, I can see how wrong that perspective is. Twisting Gods Word often leads to a twisted view of God Himself.

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/daily-video/2019/02/13/the-foreknowledge-of-god/

You see, dear ones, that God has not seen into the future, but that there is a much more beautiful exegesis for the verses referring to Gods foreknowledge. To know, in an intimate, or unique, way, those whom He has called. What is this love? What is this that God has done for those He calls? To save us, wretched, rebellious, God-hating sinners, by sending His only begotten Son to die in our place? To adopt us? To sanctify us? To justify us? Not a single sinner on Earth has ever deserved this love. And yet, as if to further shine a light on the darkness of man’s wicked heart, He reveals in His Word that He knows us? Intimately, deeply, uniquely, knows us? We’re talking about the one true God, creator of the universe, whose ways are always righteous and just, who’s loving kindness knows no bounds, whose power is beyond comprehension. That God, has known us? How can anyone twist such a beautiful doctrine into such a sinful one? Well, beloved, I did. Before I was saved I would have touted this exact heresy.

To make man more, and God less seems to be the purpose of every verse taken out of context. Brothers and sisters, God can not, and does not, learn anything. Everything that ever was or will be was already known to Him before the Earth was made. If you have repented of your sins, put your faith in Christ, and been born again by Gods grace, then you too were forknown. If you have not been born again, if there’s never been a time when you were made into a new creation that now loves what God loves and hates what God hates, then your sins of lying, lusting, coveting, and idolatry are a direct offense against this great God. That’s the bad news. The Good News of the Gospel is that Jesus Christ, fully man and fully God, came and lived a sinless life, dying in our place, to save whosoever would believe. Repent, turn away, from your sins, and cry out to God for salvation. Only by one name, Christ and Christ alone, can man be saved. There is no other hope for sinners to be saved. As always, beloved brethren, be good Bereans, and study to show yourselves approved.