The Magic of Reality

Lighthouse Notes (Pastor Joey Rountree)

Is Christianity just another world religion? Some secular authors would have their readers believe so. They claim ‘faith in any god’ is merely an antiquated crutch that has outgrown its usefulness. 

How would the authors of the Bible respond to such claims? Stated differently, how does God respond to these claims?
 

Our pastor has begun a study of John’s first epistle (1 John). This letter was penned to provide evidence to his readers that their faith was not in vain, that its foundation was firm, and that there was assurance available of its reality.

John  will demonstrate his evidence by encouraging his readers to ask of themselves three questions.

First, what do we believe? What is the doctrine we hold firm to? We will find, if we’re honest, what we believe dictates how we live.

Second, who do we obey? Who or what is the authoritative figure that reigns supreme over our decisions and the activities we involve ourselves with?

And third, who or what do we love? To answer this question, we should apply Jesus’ instruction that we identify our treasures. He said, “Take a good look at what’s important to you (where time, labor, money, etc. is spent)… that’s your true love.”

Christianity is not some pie-in-the-sky belief system. Its truths are factual and defendable with intelligent apologetics. Still, John concludes with agreement to the words of an old and favorite hymn, the greatest evidence of its reality is a changed  life. 

“You ask me how I know He lives… He lives… within my heart.”

 “And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true and eternal life.” 1 John 5:20

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About mtsweat

Seeking the rest that is only promised and found in Christ Jesus, along with my treasured wife of more than twenty-five years, we seek to grow in our relationship with our Heavenly Father, walk with the Holy Spirit as He moves our hearts, loving others always as Jesus loves us, and carry the news of His glory, the wonderful gospel, that gives light and life where there once was only darkness.
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11 Responses to The Magic of Reality

  1. Freedomborn says:

    Hi Hank is it true that Ostriches bury their head in the sand ???…. please feel free to join the debate as it seems it is what Mike wants to happen in regards to our differences and as I did tell him right at the start that he could take the lead so now although it is not my will to resolve our differences on the Blog as I respect him and keep to my word I’m willing to submit to his Leadership in this area… so stop repeating yourself Hank and join in regardless of want position you want to support because in the end God will always have the Last word, we are all under His Authority in Christ Jesus who He has given all Authority too.
    Christian Love Anne

  2. Hank says:

    Well Mikey, looks like you are dealing with this behind the scenes. LOL! I wish I were a fly on the wall or a bug in the email because I haven’t had the privilege of a good debate like this in a long time. 🙂

  3. hankcr says:

    Well Mikey, you must be dealing with this behind the scenes. LOL! Would like to have been a fly on the wall, or in the email, cause I haven’t had the privilege of a good debate like this one is a while. 🙂

  4. Freedomborn says:

    No Mike what you shared was clear but sadly it is what many believe and it is only half the Gospel as the Scripture confirms it to be so. It was never my intention to show you or anyone else disrespect but we are all called to correct error that is why I asked that we resolve our differences in private because we are not to argue or just to agree to disagree.

    Your statement…. When believers (me) yield to their flesh, it is not because Jesus’ work was not sufficient, it was! What I am saying is that when I fall short, miss the mark of perfection (sin), it’s my fault…….

    Although it is True what you say, but when compared to other Scriptures below I hope you will realise what you need to do ….. if only you knew what you were missing you would not be scratching around trying to find loop holes. Please ask God for His wisdom and walk in it.

    Colossians 3:4-6 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

    2 Corinthians 7: 1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

    Mike if our flesh Nature which causes us to sin has been put to death, then we no longer sin please ponder on this.

    Christian Love Anne

  5. Freedomborn says:

    Yes so True Mike, Jesus did come to set us free as well as forgive us for our sins, if He hadn’t we would not only be punished for our past sins but would continue to sin because of sins bondage which makes us slaves to it.

    1 Peter 2:24 Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

    Ephesians 4:23-24 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

    Romans 6:17-19 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness
    Please Explain how this Scripture fits in with you continue to sin till you die… Hebrews 6:1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,

    Take Care my friend Christian Love Anne

    • mtsweat says:

      Anne,
      I think I’ve been unclear in my presentation of the believer and the believer’s position in Christ. When I state that I still yield to the flesh, I am not saying Jesus’ work has flaws. His work is perfect and complete. In Christ, every believer stands justified and holy and righteous, even sinless. Because He took our sin and gave us His perfection (Romans 4 -6). When believers (me) yield to their flesh, it is not because Jesus’ work was not sufficient, it was! What I am saying is that when I fall short, miss the mark of perfection (sin), it’s my fault. He’s empowered us with the Holy Spirit to live victorious lives, so … when that car pulls out in front of me, and thoughts run through my mind of what I would do if I had my hands around that driver’s neck… I’ve allowed the flesh some attention.
      A good example of this in Scripture is found in Paul’s and Peter’s encounter in Antioch (Galatians 2:11-14). Here was Peter, now a great preacher and man of God. But he got a little wishy-washy when he became fearful of what the Jews might think of him if he was seen eating in the manner of the Gentile believers. In this text, Paul rebukes him. Peter could be described as yielding to the sins of fear, partiality, legalism, and others.
      Does this mean Peter was less perfect in Christ? No, because these sins were already covered by Jesus’ blood.
      But I do the same thing. In the course of a day, there will be times (more than I want to admit) when I don’t love God with every fabric of my being (as I’m commanded to). There will be way to many times when I don’t love others as myself. It’s why I need the precious atoning blood of Jesus Christ just as much today as the day He saved me.
      Anyway, I apologize for being unclear. Unfortunately, that’s another area I miss the mark on. But God is working, and I trust He will make me who He wants me to be before all is said and done.
      Thanks for reading and God bless.

  6. Freedomborn says:

    Hi again Mike, I missed this part in the message you shared that said ….They claim ‘faith in any god’ is merely an antiquated crutch that has outgrown its usefulness.

    Atheists also claim we are brain washed, I told them I was very thankful that God had washed my brain because it was very dirty with unhealthy worldly rubbish and it needed washing. No use trying to explain that we have the mind of Christ when we are Born again they can’t understand. I also asked them to ponder on what a crutch is used for, meaning a walking stick…. it helps us to walk and not fall over, I know with being disabled I sometimes just lean on mine and rest awhile. If God is my Crutch what a magnificent Crutch He is and oh how much I do need to rest in His arms and be strengthened, yes as a Child we are to be dependant on Him.

    Someone recently asked me why hasn’t God healed me Miraculously from my genetic birth defect as He has done with the other conditions I had, some of which were life threatening but I believe He also uses Medicine too and He knows how much we can handle but each day I give thanks that I can still walk at all even if it is limited, because when I was 40 they told me I would be a Paraplegic by the time I was 60, and that I may not even be able to use my hands, my 60th Birthday is in December but I can still cook and write and do many other things I shouldn’t be able to do, even though I do have pain at times, but God has helped even with this, He truly is an Awesome, Loving God but perhaps He will still heal me completely of my disability in this life, we will see.

    Christian Love Anne.

    • mtsweat says:

      Thanks Anne. I agree. Our God has no limits. With God, the word impossible has no meaning. We praise Him when He chooses to heal physically, and we praise Him when He chooses to draw us closer to Him through adversities. And the greatest miracle of healing is seen through His provision for the greatest illness of all, the illness that is 100% fatal every time… sin. God bless friend.

  7. Lambskinny says:

    Amen!

  8. Freedomborn says:

    Hi Mike, you made some good points, but with having had a Ministry to Atheists, there are other things they also claim, some even though they say they don’t believe in God, will also claim He does evil and is cruel. Others will claim He is not a Supernatural God but sadly I have found even some Christians say these things too. Why the deception, I think mostly with Atheists it’s because they don’t know the heart of God and with Christians they have never experienced God working in their own lives in Supernatural ways, so therefore they reject what they don’t understand and even use Scripture to confirm it but of course out of context.

    Apart from other peoples lives my own life as shown God’s intervention many times even with my Little dog Petal that I shared about on my Blog. I am not Pentecostal who some claim seek for these things to happen all the time but I also don’t put God into a Box of my own understanding and experience. I never sought after the Miracles and signs and wonders that happened to me and I do not believe I’m anymore special then others, perhaps God knew I needed His reassurance and also that my Life was in danger and Medicine could not help. Everything that has happened to me has either been Medically Documented and with the signs and wonders, witnessed by others as I shared with Petal,

    So Mike or anyone else I would be interested if you could share your thoughts on why you think some Christians claim God does not work Supernaturally today, when the Scriptures say He does and many can claim the same in their own lives, I find their limited understanding of both the Scriptures and of God of the impossible hard to gel, with the reality not just in my life but in others.

    Christian Love Anne.

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