National Porn Sunday

UPDATE: As the set day approaches, I’m seeing a lot of hits to this page. Please feel free to comment in agreement or disagreement. Your email address will never be released or used to spam you.

Some thoughts on Susan’s post and on National Porn Sunday:

Lust really is the dirty secret within the church – it’s consuming many people in and outside the faith. The church has a responsibility to call those in bondage to it (just like homosexuality, adultery or anything else plaguing our society). In fact, it’s lust (quickly followed by porn) at the root of those other sins. We are commanded by scripture to rebuke/reprove those engaged in it.

Bringing awareness to the problem of porn and porn addiction is a good thing – but it’s clear these guys have gone over the line with Wally the Weiner (a 25-foot inflatable penis-like display), taking part in porn expos, giving porn stars shirts that says Jesus loves them, etc.. It’s a great example of what is wrong with the man-centered gospel and buddy-Jesus approach so many follow.

It is impossible for me to line their actions up with scriptures like this:

Be ye therefore imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, even as Christ also loved you, and gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for an odor of a sweet smell. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as becometh saints; nor filthiness, nor foolish talking, or jesting, which are not befitting: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know of a surety, that no fornicator, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no man deceive you with empty words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience.

Be not ye therefore partakers with them; For ye were once darkness, but are now light in the Lord: walk as children of light (for the fruit of the light is in all goodness and righteousness and truth), proving what is well-pleasing unto the Lord; and have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather even reprove them; for the things which are done by them in secret it is a shame even to speak of.
(Ephesians 5:1-12 ASV)

For good ideas on reaching the lost biblically. Check out “Hell’s Best Kept Secret“.

The Baptism of Jon Garrett Shank

Jon Garrett Shank (our 3rd son) was baptized Sunday. Joni has pics on her site.

I love the baptism service. The words are so powerful. I don’t think we meditate on what is actually said during a baptism. Here is part of it, although Bro. Will does a great job of adding things to personalize the entire thing, including walking up the middle of the church to introduce Jon Garrett to his new bothers and sisters in Christ as well as remind them of their commitment to him.

To those who bring this child for baptism:

On behalf of the whole church, I ask you:
Do you renounce the spiritual forces of wickedness, reject the evil powers of this world, and repent of your sin? (response: we do.)

Do you accept the freedom and power God gives you to resist evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves? (response: we do.)

Do you confess Jesus Christ as your Savior, put your whole trust in his grace, and promise to serve him as your Lord, in union with the church which Christ has opened to people of all ages, nations and races? (response: we do.)

Will you nurture this child in Christ’ holy church, that by your teaching and example he may be guided to accept God’s grace for himself, to profess this faith openly, and to lead a Christian life? (response: we do.)

To the congregation:

Do you as Christ’s body , the church, reaffirm both your rejection of sin and your commitment to Christ? (response: we do.)

Will you nurture one another in the Christian faith and life and include the child now before you in your care? (response: we do.)

JB was also very cute saying “we do” right along with us.

Thanks to Brother Will for sending the text on to me.
excerpt from The United Methodist Hymnal page 40
Copyright 1989 The United Methodist Publishing House

Jesus didn’t turn anyone away…

“Jesus didn’t turn anyone away… Neither Do We.”

This is the catch phrase from the Pro-homosexual United Church of Christ’s controversial ad the networks are refusing to air. The ad features two men holding hands being turned away from night-club style bouncers outside a church. The ad also shows two women (a couple you can presume) arm in arm as part of the people welcomed by the UCC.

While it’s a true statement on its own, Jesus did not turn anyone away. There is a huge difference between what Jesus taught and what the UCC is teaching. In a word, repentance. As a church, we should welcome everyone to the church and to follow Christ. But that requires you to Repent. Matthew cites Jesus’ first sermon as “Repent! For the Kingdom of God is near.” Same for John the Baptist. Luke has Peter calling for repentance, as part of his first sermon at Pentecost, as well.

Back to Christ. Look at how he treated the rich man in Luke 18:18-24

A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
“Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 20 You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.'”

“All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said.

When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!

While Christ, didn’t turn him a way, he sure made it clear he must be willing to repent of his sin (in this case love of money) before he could be welcomed.

If we were really concerned with the souls of men, rather than gaining their approval, we the church would be clearly stating that message. It’s not hatred that puts us at odds with homosexuality. It’s love.

I truly love my fellow human beings and get incredible joy out of seeing someone realize they don’t have to go to Hell. They can be saved. It grieves me and should grieve us all, as it did Paul:

…and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged. (2 Cor 12:21)

There is a judgement to come. And you (gay or straight) will have to give an account for what you did or did not do. So, I pray that all will repent of their sin, no matter how small you think your sin might be. Repent. To not do so, and to teach others that it’s okay to live in your sin in horrific to me.

If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
Heb 10:26-31

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So you want to fly in a Navy Fighter Jet?

Below is a forward sent to me recently. Enjoy.

Below is an article written by Rick Reilly of Sports Illustrated.

“Now this message is for America’s most famous athletes:

Someday you may be invited to fly in the back-seat of one of your country’s most powerful fighter jets. Many of you already have … John Elway, John Stockton, Tiger Woods to name a few. If you get this opportunity, let me urge you, with the greatest sincerity…

Move to Guam.

Change your name.

Fake your own death!

Whatever you do … Do Not Go!!!

I know. The U.S. Navy invited me to try it. I was thrilled. I was pumped. I was toast! I should’ve known when they told me my pilot would be Chip (Biff) King of Fighter Squadron 213 at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach.

Whatever you’re thinking a Top Gun named Chip (Biff) King looks like, triple it. He’s about six-foot, tan, ice-blue eyes, wavy surfer hair, finger-crippling handshake &#8212 the kind of man who wrestles dysleptic alligators in his leisure time. If you see this man, run the other way. Fast.

Biff King was born to fly. His father, Jack King, was for years the voice of NASA missions. (“T-minus 15 seconds and counting …” Remember?) Chip would charge neighborhood kids a quarter each to hear his dad. Jack would wake up from naps surrounded by nine-year-olds waiting for him to say, “We have a liftoff”

Biff was to fly me in an F-14D Tomcat, a ridiculously powerful $60 million weapon with nearly as much thrust as weight, not unlike Colin Montgomerie. I was worried about getting airsick, so the night before the flight I asked Biff if there was something I should eat the next morning.

“Bananas,” he said.

“For the potassium?” I asked.

“No,” Biff said, “because they taste about the same coming up as they do going down.”

The next morning, out on the tarmac, I had on my flight suit with my name sewn over the left breast. (No call sign &#8212 like Crash or Sticky or Leadfoot — but, still, very cool.) I carried my helmet in the crook of my arm, as Biff had instructed. If ever in my life I had a chance to nail Nicole Kidman, this was it.

A fighter pilot named Psycho gave me a safety briefing and then fastened me into my ejection seat, which, when employed, would “egress” me out of the plane at such a velocity that I would be immediately knocked unconscious.

Just as I was thinking about aborting the flight, the canopy closed over me, and Biff gave the ground crew a thumbs-up. In minutes we were firing nose up at 600 mph. We leveled out and then canopy-rolled over another F-14.

Those 20 minutes were the rush of my life. Unfortunately, the ride lasted 80. It was like being on the roller coaster at Six Flags Over Hell. Only without rails. We did barrel rolls, snap rolls, loops, yanks and banks. We dived, rose and dived again, sometimes with a vertical velocity of 10,000 feet per minute. We chased another F-14, and it chased us.

We broke the speed of sound. Sea was sky and sky was sea. Flying at 200 feet we did 90-degree turns at 550 mph, creating a G force of 6.5, which is to say I felt as if 6.5 times my body weight was smashing against me, thereby approximating life as Mrs. Colin Montgomerie.

And I egressed the bananas. I egressed the pizza from the night before.

And the lunch before that. I egressed a box of Milk Duds from the sixth grade. I made Linda Blair look polite. Because of the G’s, I was egressing stuff that never thought would be egressed. I went through not one airsick bag, but two.

Biff said I passed out. Twice. I was coated in sweat. At one point, as we were coming in upside down in a banked curve on a mock bombing target and the G’s were flattening me like a tortilla and I was in and out of consciousness, I realized I was the first person in history to throw down.

I used to know ‘cool’. Cool was Elway throwing a touchdown pass, or Norman making a five-iron bite. But now I really know ‘cool’. Cool is guys like Biff, men with cast-iron stomachs and freon nerves. I wouldn’t go up there again for Derek Jeter’s black book, but I’m glad Biff does every day, and for less a year than a rookie reliever makes in a home stand.

A week later, when the spins finally stopped, Biff called. He said he and the fighters had the perfect call sign for me. Said he’d send it on a patch for my flight suit.

What is it? I asked.

“Two Bags.”