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How does one find God? Whoever looks will find. One can look in the Torah, the New Testament, the Quran, and even the Book of Mormon, and find God promising He will reveal Himself to anyone who seeks Him. It is not so easy, though. We want, so very much, to make our own way—apart from any higher power. You hear this desire all the time. When one says, “God judges the heart,” s/he really means they want to be left to their own devices. Even in churches we hear, “The rules can’t save you—only the Rule Giver.” Well, sure. However, if the Rule Giver saves me will He not give me rules? We fail to trust in God because we want so much to trust in ourselves. What folly! Mao and his communist party tried to create a new socialist man and saw 50 million Chinese starve. He considered these deaths acceptable collateral damage. Godless nobility gives death. Another dangerous road away from God is the search for the good within. China, the Soviet Union and North Korea, in their quest for godless goodness incarcerated people of faith. Stalin’s Russia even used psychiatric hospitals to try to cure Christians of their apparent mental disorders. Inside the church, there are voices suggesting that doctrine—teaching—is not important. A growing church in Los Angeles became famous for helping the poor and for being interracial in the 1970s. Even city government sought out its church leaders, due to their positive works. Yet, behind the church doors the pastor was engaging in fake healings, teaching that humans could be gods, and he was allowing church beatings in the name of discipline. The church was the People’s Temple, and the pastor was Jim Jones. By 1979 the church relocated to Guyana, and over 900 members lie dead, from mass suicide. We must return to our faith in the one good God. In creation God sees his goodness repeatedly. After the great flood wipes out wickedness, God’s man, Noah, declares God’s goodness by building an altar to him. God’s nation, Israel, often declared en masse that he is good and loving. Jesus’ resurrection showed God’s goodness. Paul says that without resurrection we are pathetic, but with it we are most blessed! Finally, even the opponents of God will ultimately declare God’s goodness. The Bible says every knee will bow and confess that Jesus is Lord. God is good—but all the time? Every week I join female prisoners in worship. They flock to Christian chapel. Statistics suggest that 90% of them have been sexually molested. Nevertheless, they come, declaring that life may be hard, but God will get them through. So many who faced bad times, but continued to declare God’s goodness! Despite testimonies to God’s goodness, we gravitate towards our own efforts. Sadly, even when we find the right answers, we usually cannot carry them out. Consider that Unicor, also known as Federal Prison Industries, has a tremendous record for successfully rehabilitating prisoners, so they can return to society and get legal, productive jobs. Nevertheless, the program flounders because local factories want the jobs that Unicor does. So, we know a program that works well, but we do not have the political will to enact it on a large scale. We cannot solve our own problems. Good intentions are not enough. What can we do? We must have right belief: That God is good; that God is one; that Jesus is our only way to the Father; that any good we do must be grounded in God; and that God is love. Is it really that simple? Sure! However, to know Jesus is to love Him. To love Jesus is to serve Him. Will you give up your independent efforts at goodness? Will you trust God to lead you in His way of righteousness? To see a video presentation of this message visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jx5S904diRI
I am grateful to God for the freedoms I enjoy and for His hand in establishing the great land I call home. I am grateful to those who fight to preserve our freedoms, and for the brave men who this day in 1776 prepared the Declaration of Independence and declared unequivocally that our rights come from God. I hope and pray our constitution and freedoms will be maintained in the way the Lord intended when established by His power. God bless America!
So, on the 18th September, the population of Scotland will vote yes or no to the question, should Scotland be an independent Country? In the event of a yes vote, Britain would become a a meagre England and Wales, whereas the United Kingdom would only consist of only England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Will such a move benefit Scotland in the long run, how will it affect the remainder of the UK and perhaps more importantly to most of you across the pond, will this separation affect the UK's political and NATO allies, such as the USA, in any adverse fashion, maybe from a political or military viewpoint? From a military perspective, if Scotland becomes independent, the Scottish government wants to remove trident (the British nuclear weapons programme) from the country ASAP - not something I'd imagine the US has an interest in happening. Barack Obama has recently stated that the USA has "a deep interest in making sure that one of the closest allies we will ever have remains a strong, robust, united and effective partner". What are your thoughts on this?