Coffee Percs

We sat there, drank some coffee, and counted our blessings.”
              –D.C. Adkisson (Mal de Ojo)

Come on in Pard, the coffee’s on the stove waitin’ for yuh.  Do yuh remember ol’ Stiff-Lipped Lou and Skinny Thompson?  They came by last week with mopey looks on the faces.  There was always was something fearful ’bout Skinny.  I was concerned that he’d fall through a hole in the seat of his pants and choke himself to death, but guess he checks his britches regularly.
    Go ahead an’ take a sip while I continue.  They were goin’ on ’bout the fact that taxes are goin’ up, that the price of groceries are goin’ up, that gas is goin’ up.  I listened to their moanin’ noddin’ my head now and again.  Lots of things are changin’, why them power-hungry bureaucrats are wantin’ a vaccine passort.  Talk about anti-American.  Imagine what our forefathers would have thought about that.  Yuh cayn’t travel from place to place without yur shot passport.  I don’t like the idea of the bureaucrats tryin’ to manipulate us.
    Pard, let me refill yur cup.  I then went on to remind them that they are not in the dark like those disciples of Jesus on that dark Saturday after the cross.  Imagine them, fearful, lackin’ in faith, sittin’ in a little room.  They probably looked at each other, questions in their eyes, with hope lost.  Here we are, knowin’ the story and ol’ Lou and Skinny were fearful ’bout the future.  Hope is alive, I told them, have faith that the Lord will take care of their needs.
    Well, enough bein’ said.  That Good Friday, which the disciples might at that time called “Dark Friday” finished the purpose of our Lord comin’ to earth.  Pard, things were dark then, but I told them Sunday’s comin’.  Things might be dark in their lives now, but yuh know, there’s a bright tomorrow waitin’ for us.
    Pard, yuh best be gettin’ out an’ buyin’ yur sweetie an Easter lily.  Don’t get yurself in such a hurry that yuh forget to check yur cinch though.
     Vaya con Dios.

Echoes From the Campfire

Do your duty; defeat evil where you see it and go with God.”
              –D.C. Adkisson (Mal de Ojo)

    “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”
              –Romans 8:11 (NASB)
I believe that the three most powerful and important words were spoken on that first Good Friday when Jesus hung on the cross.  “It is finished!”  The work that Jesus came to do was finished on the cross.  He fulfilled His purpose; He completed what He was sent to do.  
    Redemption–it was finished, mankind had been redeemed.  Propitiation–it was finished, the sacrifice of Jesus satisfied the wrath of God.  Atonement–it was finished, man’s sin was covered with the blood of Jesus.  Reconciliation–it was finished, there was now a way back to the Father.  Substitution–it was finished, Jesus took man’s place on the cross, He died where man did not have to.  Justification–it was finished, the Judge of Heaven pronounced Jesus guilty instead of you or me. 
    It was the cross that satisfied God.  It was the cross where Jesus took ALL the sins of the world, past and present, upon Himself.  It was the cross that made the earth tremble, made the demons cheer, and the skies darken.  Jesus, the Son of God, man perfect upon this earth now became sin and He cried out when sin came upon Him in all its horror and terror–It is finished!
    However, there were a few things to take care of before the complete mission was fulfilled.  The three silent days we know little about.  Things took place in the spirit world, the gates of hell were broken, but what actually happened we don’t know for sure.  Then. . . another shaking of the earth, then another shaking in the spirit realm and Jesus walked out of that tomb.  Death, sin, and hell had been defeated, now–the mission was complete!
    As Jesus completed His mission, so He expects us to complete ours.  We are given work to do; duty to follow the steps of Jesus.  No, we don’t have to die for our sins, Jesus did that, but we do have to pick up our cross and carry it.  Each of us play a different part in the mission, therefore, each of us have a job to finish.  There are battles to face, but that does not mean the mission is over.  I think of D-Day, June 1944, which insured the defeat of Germany, however, the mission was not completed until May 1945, when the Nazi government of the Third Reich surrendered to Allied forces.  Your personal mission will not be over until Jesus says, “well done, good and faithful servant.”
    Please take some time today and throughout the weekend to contemplate those words, “It is finished!” (see John 19).  Then be ready to shout in victory as V-S Day came about.  (Victory Over Satan/Sin)  It is finished, the victory is won!  Throw your shoulders back, hold your head high, for Jesus Christ brought about the glorious victory.

Echoes From the Campfire

To a fool time brings only age, not wisdom.”
              –Louis L’Amour  (Sitka)

    “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, They have done abominable works, There is none who does good.”
              –Psalm 14:1 (NKJV)
This is not a joke, this is just something I don’t understand.  How can people of sound mind say that there is no God when “The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork” (Psalm 19:1, NKJV)?  This is purposely remaining ignorant.  To look into the majestic sky at night seeing all the stars and thinking, “it just happened” –what foolishness!”
    How can people see what Jesus did for them on the cross and refuse to accept His sacrifice and redemption?  This is the height of foolishness.  Why choose a devil’s hell when Jesus paid the price so that each person could go to heaven?  Arrogance and foolishness!
    “Life hath been set before you, the joys of heaven have been opened to you in the gospel; the certainty of them have been manifested; the certainty of the everlasting torments of the damned hath been declared to you,” wrote Richard Baxter.  There is a choice for all to make, it is complete foolishness to choose the road to perdition.
    Yet many will not turn.  They will choose to go their own way, therefore it is not the fault of God that they are condemned, but because of their own willfulness and refusing the sacrifice of Jesus on Calvary.  
    This is the atheist’s holiday–April Fools’ Day–April 1.  Let’s look at what a fool is from the Book of Proverbs.  In the New King James a fool is mentioned 78 times in Proverbs.

         “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (1:7)

         “For the turning away of the simple will slay them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them.” (1:32)

         “The wise shall inherit glory, But shame shall be the legacy of fools.” (3:35)

         “Forsake foolishness and live, And go in the way of understanding.”  (9:6)

         “The wise in heart will receive commands, But a prating fool will fall.”  (10:8)

         “To do evil is like sport to a fool, But a man of understanding has wisdom.”  (10:23)

         “Fools mock at sin, But among the upright there is favor.”  (14:9)

         “The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, But the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.”  (15:2)

Here is enough to give us the idea of the heart and course of the “fool.”  Foolishness, folly is the choice of many which will lead down the road to destruction.  Heed the advice of our Lord Jesus, seek to find the narrow gate, follow the difficult way, and find life everlasting (Matthew 7:13-14).
    We may laugh at the foolish pranks done today.  We may smile at the puns or the jokes, but the way of the fool is no laughing matter.  He is to be pitied and witnessed to, if he will listen.  I like what Charles Portis wrote in True Grit, “What have you done when you have bested a fool?”

Echoes From the Campfire

He was following a duty, and this duty impelled him to make his greatest effort.”
              –James Oliver Curwood  (The River’s End)

    “You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on wickedness.  Why do You look on those who deal treacherously, and hold Your tongue when the wicked devours a person more righteous than he?”
              –Habakkuk 1:13 (NKJV)
How to Live in a Pagan, Apostate, and Foolish World

Key Verse:  “We know that we are of God, and the whole world is in the power of the evil one.” –1 John 5:19 (RSV)

         “In other words, we know what it is to be grieved by the sin of this world; we do not merely look at the world with a political eye or with a social eye or with an eye of benevolence.  No, we see things as God Himself sees them.  Evil becomes a reality, sin becomes a reality in the new sense, and we see these powers, these evil forces that are in the world and which are manipulating the life of the world in their enmity against God and we are concerned about that.  We feel that God is in it and that we are likewise in it, in that we are concerned to bring the purposes of God to pass.  We meditate, we pray; we do everything that we are capable of in furthering the kingdom of light, so that the kingdom of evil may be finally routed.  We are sharers in God’s thought and in God’s enterprise and in God’s whole interest in this life and world.”
                     –D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Think hard about the about statement.  How do you look upon the political scene?  Is it through the eyes of God’s Word, or through your own opinions?  Are you serving the Lord or are you serving the culture or are you serving yourself?  Are you a friend of God or the friend of the world?  The answers to these questions are important if you are really concerned about having a relationship, being in fellowship with the Father.
    Fellowship means that things are shared.  If the Holy Spirit is grieved, are you grieved?  Are you a partaker in the things of God, and part of that means picking up your cross daily and following Him?  If you are to have true fellowship, a real relationship then you will have shared interests and shared purposes.
    There must be an intense desire to do the will of God.  It is not in word only, but throughout all aspects of life.  We should hunger and thirst after righteousness, not our own desires.  In fact, His desires should become our desires.  There is promise of the Scripture that is ours to believe and take to heart, however, most only take the second have.  Remember, that all promises have a condition.  Look at Psalm 37:4, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” (NKJV)  Most claim the second phrase, but forget that for God to give us the desires of our heart we must first delight in Him and in doing that we will have the desires of His heart.
    Look at what Paul writes, “For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13, NKJV).  We need to read the Word of God to know His will.  He is with us through the journey of life.  He leads us; He reveals His will to us; He opens doors and shuts them; sometimes He puts up barriers and obstacles as well as removing them, and He will deal with us.  I read recently that, “Not all storms come to disrupt your life, some come to clear your path.”