Fathers must not be put to death for what their children do, nor children for what their fathers do; each must be put to death for his own sin. Deuteronomy 24.16.

Moses said it by inspiration to the people of Israel, before they entered the land of Canaan. Centuries later, the prophet Ezekiel developed it further, speaking again to the Israelites. (See chapters 18 and 33.) Go to the New Testament and see that condemnation and salvation are determined on an individual basis.

The one who believes and is baptized will be saved, but the one who does not believe will be condemned. Mark 16.16.

Some Bible versions published in recent years throw statements into the plural in order to avoid the singular masculine pronoun. All fine and good, but it sometimes misses a point, like individual responsibility.

Let each one examine his own work. Then he can take pride in himself and not compare himself with someone else. For each one will carry his own load. Galatians 6.4-5.

Am I to blame for what happened a hundred years ago or more? God is more interested in what I am doing right now. Continue reading

So what’s it been now, four, five months? How does it feel to live in lockdown? Is there anything we can learn from this experience?

#1. We can’t live in isolation. We need people — physically near us — and more than just one or two family members. Remember that “no man is an island”? We were created as social creatures. As much as a blessing as the internet can be, it cannot substitute physical presence. Isolation creates stress. And while so many talk about how hard it is to work with or deal with people, we’re far worse off without them. You may say, well, sure, we all know that. If so, why are we living as if it weren’t true?

#2. Go read about the testing in Florida, with reported positive test results 10 times greater than the real results. I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but something is deeply wrong with the whole approach here. I refuse to be cowed. I refuse to bow to the fear-mongering. We need not be stupid about risks, but neither must we faint or fear. The social Awe-and-Wow is smoke and mirrors, except when you get fined or jailed, but even then realize who the magician is behind the curtain. Continue reading

I like informality. I love working from my home office in flip-flops and bermudas. Ceremony is not my bailiwick. Most people today are non-traditional as well. The laid-back approach has won the day in our time.

That kind of approach, however, does not work well with God, not even having gained the right to call him Father. Continue reading

Why do poets off themselves
Five times more than others do?
Besides the fact that no one reads
Their work, though every soul approves?
To their own self they seek to be true.
On praise alone no poet feeds.

With finer gauge his brain is wired
(Though his is not a greater heart),
With words he seeks to order the world;
In lines and meter is he inspired
To repair what sin has torn apart,
To smooth the Fall that left him gnarled.

What hopeless task! His words lack force
For such a work — No man can win! —
This power can God alone provide.
What poet will seek in God his source?
With spoken light will he begin?
No wonder he choses suicide!

Adopting an infinite mindset in a world consumed by the finite can absolutely cost a leader their job. —Simon Sinek

CVS bucked the financial bottom line in order to look out for the health of their clients. They stopped selling cigarettes. They adopted what Sinek calls, above, an infinite mindset. Against all predictions, it paid off big for them.

There’s a spiritual principle here. We’re not talking about business or leadership, but rather the Kingdom of God and service to the Lord Jesus Christ. But the quote splashes over into heavenly realities.

In spiritual terms, how is the finite view identified? What does it look like? How does it act? Here are some points. Continue reading

People who believe that God wants to enrich their bank accounts and solve all their health issues engage in materialistic thinking. The health-and-wealth gospel gets just about everything wrong about God and the Good News. In the New Testament, there is no promise of exterior change. On the contrary, Paul tells us to remain where we are, in the condition we find ourselves, 1 Corinthians 7. The Good News is about transformation of the interior and the destiny of our eternal soul.

Closer to home, people who believe that, in order to be a viable congregation, it must have its own building, a full-time paid preacher, and some sort of association with an organized, official school also engage in materialistic thinking. (I see and hear this all the time in missions.) That’s a modern-day formula for church growth and health that many of our people have bought into. Not to mention even the denominational groups who are into professional shows, massaged messages, and mega-everything. You’ll not find any of that anywhere in the New Testament. Continue reading

The longer on earth a saint remains,
The stronger grows desire for heaven;
The body feels its aging pains,
And more to God’s own side he’s driven.

The heavier load of life directs
The sight of faith to things above;
To Jesus’ cross my trial connects,
To service the Holy Spirit drove.

Oh, Lord Messiah, come for me!
Break open the clouds with angels’ shout!
The humble soul would soon see
The end of Satan’s and saints’ dispute!


Describe how your difficulties have increased your desire for eternal things.