It's an hour before the annual Memorial Day parade in Saugus. We always do it on Saturday, leaving Monday free for cook-outs, plus we can get more bands who are booked on Monday. This year Senator Scott Brown (LTC/JAG) is participating, along with the Captain of the USS Constitution. A bagpiper from my church will be playing at the cemetery. When people tell me "Thank you for your service" I smile and answer, "It was a blessing to serve." I'm sure a lot of soldiers don't see the Army as a "blessing", but for me it was. I had a wonderful opportunity for 25 years to live all over the world, have some exciting adventures along the way, and communicate the hope and meaning God gives. I retired with fond memories and no regrets.
Well, the world didn’t end last night, though I suppose it did for Harold Camping; but disappointment is nothing new to him, for he predicted that 1998 would see the Second Coming. Camping is a civil engineer and the founder of Family Radio, a nation-wide network of religious programs. He is not a biblical scholar, and his view of the Apocalypse is not shared by most Christians. He is not a cult leader, but someone who views the Bible from an engineer’s perspective, which caused him to mathematically work out his end-time scenario. What Scripture does teach is that Jesus will return some day, that His return is imminent…though to say it is soon or to set dates is very presumptuous. There are several popular views of the end times, and we should not use what others believe about this as a litmus test of their faithfulness to Scripture. Jesus could return today, but that is knowledge above our understanding. We should keep this in mind while scoffers make fun of Christians over this non-event. When someone asks your opinion, share what Scripture does say about the blessed hope of the end-times, when every wrong will be made right, and every knee will bow and every tongue confess Christ as Lord.
I am very concerned about libertarians who are attracting support among fiscal conservatives, as if the economy were the only important issue. A libertarian view is unconcerned about social issues, and places personal freedom above all else, even when that might not be such a good thing. Libertarians appear to be saying "who cares" about matters such as the legalization of drugs and prostitution. If there are no moral absolutes, then anything goes, which would be a dangerous thing. I spoke recently to a libertarian anarchist who was upset because someone stole his laptop...yet if there is no right or wrong, why not swipe stuff? Get away with whatever you can. C.S. Lewis noted that people who believe there are no moral absolutes quickly change their tune when they're treated un fairly. Let's not vote with our wallets.
A lot of blogspace has been devoted to Rob Bell's universalism, along with charges of heresy. Yet why are my fellow-Reformed friends so reluctant to call Arminianism heresy, when it is a greater error and does more damage to the doctrines of grace? To say that man is sovereign over salvation and that the atonement is not sufficient to keep believers secure is a terrible heresy, yet we smile and agree to disagree. I think Rob Bell may at least have a higher view of the atonement than most Arminians.
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