Archive for the ‘ Mercy ’ Category

Will You Go To Hell for Me?

So far, I have discussed how the Church is failing and how we can reach out to others. [Cool-voice-over voice] And now for the conclusion:

I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it in the Holy Spirit— I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, those of my own race, the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption as sons; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.
Romans 9:1-5

There is a movie called “The Second Chance” and stars Michael W. Smith. One of the boys in the movie joins a gang, and there is the traditional “If you want to leave the gang, we will beat you to within an inch of your life” talk. The pastor of The Second Chance Church reaches out to this young man, and it eventually leads to his wanting to leave the gang. When he went to tell the gang he wanted out (keep in mind that this boy has yet to become a believer in Jesus Christ), he arrived to find out that another young man from the church had taken the beating for him putting him in the hospital.

Why?

The other young man had such a love for others that he willingly and gladly paid the price for someone who had yet to believe.

Actually, it reminds me of another story about God becoming a man and dying for the sins of the world.

It also reminds me of Pastor Richard Wurmbrand’s story. (Seriously, check out the story.)

But for now, and to keep this short, can you relate with the Apostle Paul?

Do you love others so much that you wish you could lose your salvation for their sakes?

Do you love other believers enough to suffer for their sakes?

Do you love God enough to live out the love shown through the cross of Christ?

Would you take the punishment for someone you do not even know if would it bring them to the knowledge of Christ?

Would even if there was no guarantee? Even if they mistreated you?

Will You Go Through Hell with Me?

Last week I started this mini-series with “Will You Go To Hell with Me?” It is not enough to know what the Bible says, we have to live it out. It is not enough to say “Jesus is Lord,” we have to show it. It is not enough to talk about love, we have to share it.

Part 2:

But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” These are the men who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit.

But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.

Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.
Jude 17-23

Some of the people I mentioned last week fit the first couple verses’ warning. Some of these people are in conservative churches. Some are in liberal churches. Some in “mainline” churches (Lutheran, Presbyterian, Episcopal, etcetera) and Catholic churches have been around since before the vast majority of denominations and churches ever existed up through today. This is not a new thing, but the evidence seems to be pointing ever more toward us being close to the end. Either people are not showing love, or they are showing the wrong kind of love.

(On an interesting sidenote, Harold Camping, who predicted the world would end last year with Christ’s return, last week publicly repented of his sin of claiming to know the hour and day of said Return. Bravo, Mr. Camping, for owning up to your sins; and praise You, Father, for working in all things!)

People may be stupid, but, individually, people are also really smart. They frequently know when someone is not being real with them.

Here is a rebuke:

Stop offering to pray for people;
Stop telling people you feel for them;
Stop feeling sorry for them;
Stop giving money to them …

Unless you are willing to love them and walk with them in their pain.

At the Rock & Worship Roadshow, Jason Dunn of Hawk Nelson said (of the children from Compassion) “If you look at these pictures and feel guilty, then we ask you not to sponsor one of these children. The Apostle Paul told us that if we are not acting out of love, then everything we do is worthless. You should sponsor a child only because a love inside of you is compelling you to help them.”

This can be true for every other area in which we must show love for others.

The only way we Christians, we followers of Christ, can “Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear” is if we climb into the fire with them. We show them we care by walking through their pain and sadness with them. We show them we care by experiencing their hurt, doubt, hatred, and fear with them.

They know when we are just saying “I want to help you,” because they see us not helping.

I am just as guilty of this as the next guy.

And those who are living it out probably will never read this, because they are picking up the slack for the rest of us. This means that our brothers and sisters living out their faith are just as much in need of our love and support! Jesus’ command to “love your neighbor as yourself” includes Christians and non-Christians, family and strangers, friends and enemies.

Spread the Gospel by being Jesus’ hands and feet … and mouth and shoulder and shirt for runny noses and blanket and socks for cold feet and shoes for hurting feet and legs for the weary.

And do not think you are doing it by yourself and in your own power. There is no way we can climb into the flames to reach others and get back out with help. (Perhaps someday I will share a dream I had about this)

“To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.”
Jude 24-25

Weekend Words and Sunday Stanzas – 04/24/2011

HAPPY RESURRECTION SUNDAY!

How do you know this day is important? As Chuck Swindoll says “What other event do we celebrate 52 times a year?” We remember the resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth every Sunday, but this week commemorates the actual day (even if it is usually off slightly, it is like communion … in remembrance).

and so It begins
daniel m  klem

Jesus is on the cross
held with my sin
but i am forgiven
for He is risen
the Father revived
the Son to live
and He loves us
even after His strife
He gave His Son
so we may live
and now through Christ
God will forgive
Jesus is the one
that set us free
and i can love
because of He
who died on the
cross for the world
that we can praise
God and His Word

Taken from the book simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m klem, p. 99.

risen

daniel m  klem

the curtain torn
the tomb now sealed
God watching as
His angels work
the lights flashing
thunder clapping
the joy surrounds
all in heaven
explosions  cheers
lightning  thunder
flashes  novas

on earth  Jesus
taking a breath
opening eyes
He sits straight up
removes the cloths
folds them neatly
rises and leaves

Taken from the book simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m klem, p. 132.

HE IS RISEN!

Special Friday

For this Friday, I posting two of the poems from my first book. You will catch the reason why I posted these.

crucifixion
daniel m  klem

the bottom of the hill
the sun goes black
in the eighth hour
three structures
one man per structure
each with his arms outstretched
the One in the middle did nothing
closing in on the ninth hour
the Man asks for a drink
i place a sponge soaked with vinegar on a stick
offering Him His drink as He dies
i break down grief-stricken

Taken from the book simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m klem, p. 61.

it means something
daniel m  klem

i remember the death
and remember suffering
but i can see more
than just the bad things
the cross gave freedom
when He is burdened
He carried all this sin
and will until the end
the cross reminds me
He died to save us
and that i can trust
in the living Jesus

Taken from the book simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m klem, p. 159.

I pray you remember what our Lord has done for us on the day we celebrate today. I pray you remember that He is indeed alive again!

Grace and Peace.

Daniel

Merciful Death

Cross Walk 2008

Me doing the Cross Walk in 2008

If we honestly looked around our world, we could see plenty of good reasons why people would want to take their lives. Sad? Definitely.

Sorry to be gloomy and maybe even a bit sick, but what if they are on to something?

Sweet Death

I read an article recently in Christian Research Journal (Vol. 34, No. 2, 2011) titled “A Christian View of Human Nature“. The author, John S. Hammet, had this to say about death:

Moreover, may not the end of life in this world be a severe mercy from God? True, death entered the world as the punishment for sin, but a punishment that opened the door to mercy. For once humans had fallen and become like God in knowing, not just good, but now evil, God intervened: “He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life, and live forever” (Gen. 3:22). It was the mercy of God that established the limitation of life as a fallen human; as redeemed persons, we are welcomed to the tree of life (Rev. 22:3).

Not only could God have allowed death as a mercy to get away from the suffering we brought upon ourselves (and for the record, I am not making any arguments today about the afterlife for all people; this is just about this life), but He used death to defeat death!

Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.

But:

Since the children have flesh and blood, [Jesus] too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

From the beginning, God showed us mercy through death. Even if you do not hold to Hammet’s take, here are some examples:

What do you think? Is death God once again showing His grace in the midst of our punishment?