Tag Archives: death

An Unlikely Solution For Spies And Double Agents

ISIS prop ex picISIS has a problem. They are convinced that they have spies among them. And as the coalition’s air strikes become more accurate and more successful, ISIS leaders are growing wildly paranoid. In the last several weeks they have implemented a Stalinesque solution to ferret out the spies – torture and kill anyone suspicious. Now, while this policy might eventually find spies, in the mean time, the shooting, beheading, and dumping their own soldiers in vats of acid, has hurt morale a bit!

The threat of spies is not a new challenge. Several examples of spies and double agents are even in The Bible: Joseph’s brothers were accused of spying (Genesis 42:9); Moses and Joshua used spies (Numbers 13, 21; Joshua 2, 6, 22); David & Saul (1 Samuel 26; 2 Samuel 10); and Delilah was a double agent (Judges 16). And throughout history, when spies are caught, they have been treated harshly.

Even Jesus had to deal with spies. In Luke 20, we read that spies had infiltrated Jesus’ disciples, and Jesus knew it. But rather than ferreting them out or having them harmed, Jesus did, as He always does, something very unexpected. He taught them!

In Luke 20:20, the Scribes & Chief Priests sent spies “who pretended to be righteous, in order that they might catch Him in some statement, so that they could deliver Him to the rule and the authority of the governor.” The spies asked if they should pay taxes or not. If Jesus responded, “pay taxes” He would upset the people, and if He said, “don’t pay,” He would upset the government…a no win situation.

But Jesus told them to render to Caesar that which was Caesar’s and to God that which was God’s (25). And because of His answer, they were unable to catch Him in anything wrong. In fact, they “were amazed,” and they “became silent” (26).

Wow! Jesus didn’t kill anyone or order the torture of anyone. He simply chose to answer their questions. And they were amazed. No one ever treated spies with such open access! “Come and see for yourself” was Jesus’ motto.

Jesus didn’t even try to stop a double agent who sold him out for 30 pieces of silver. Even though He knew that, when He was betrayed, it would mean pain and death. He knew that the reward in the next world is far greater than just avoiding pain in this one.

Share the Word openly, because there is nothing to hide! Many who come to spy will be amazed and silenced in their criticism. Others may want to harm us, but ultimately, no one can stand against us. No spies, soldiers, governments, or enemies, foreign or domestic, will be victorious if we follow Jesus’ example.

Something Bugging You?

bugsYou’re surrounded. You had no idea. I mean, sure…the occasional bug…you’ve seen it. Maybe you smashed it. Maybe you sprayed it. Maybe you felt like you handled the problem. Think again!

According to a recent study by Matt Bertone, an entomologist at North Carolina State University, nearly 600 kinds of arthropods could be in your home right now. The average home studied had approximately 100, including: spiders, centipedes, mites, lice, beetles, roaches, flies, crickets, etc. Sleep well…and don’t let the bedbugs bite!

Of course, it turns out that this is pretty normal. No “bedbugs” were actually found in any of the homes studied; and only 3 homes had the harmful kind of roaches. For the most part, we co-exist daily, without incident, with hundreds, if not thousands, of bugs living in, under, and around our homes. And while that might send Entomophobes, Acaraphobes, Arachnophobes, and others into cold sweats, for the most part, there is no danger.

Yet, we spend billions of dollars each year on sprays, traps, lures, detection, ejection, and extermination of the little critters. We don’t want the presence of even one to be seen in our houses. We run to smash, spray, and force out of the house, even the smallest of them.

But what about sin, friend? Did you know it is far more harmful and far more prevalent in our houses and lives? Did you know it lurks around every corner and hides in every crevice? It is even “crouching at the door” and “desires to have you” (Genesis 4:4-7)!

What do we do when we see sins in our houses? Run to smash them? Or do we ignore them? Perhaps we casually stroll to handle them when we “get around to it?”

We are called to kill sins (Romans 8:13), not ignore them. The Bible tells us that sin leads to death (Romans 6:23). But if we will bring our sins into the open and confess them, God will forgive and purify them (1 John 1:7-9). Give it some thought…then go smash some sins!

The Designer Baby

genomeIt’s called “Genome Editing with CRISPR-Cas9,” and it may be a game changer in genetic engineering. Although genetic engineering is nothing new, the Washington Times recently reported that CRISPR is an amazingly “fast, flexible, cheap way to manipulate the code of life.”

CRISPR is so “revolutionary – and unnerving – that hundreds of scientists, policymakers and the president’s science adviser” gathered this week to discuss the implications and ethics of using it on human genes. Before long, this technology could be used to rid genes of hereditary diseases. But, it might also be used for cosmetic reasons…and that’s an ethical dilemma.

They are calling them “Designer Babies.” Would you be ok with picking the eye color of your baby? Height? Would you make your baby stronger? Faster? What if you could plan a future for your child? What would you envision?

I imagine that most of us have ethical concerns about these questions. Yet, if we had the opportunity, wouldn’t we make our child faster, stronger, and give them every advantage in life? That’s why it is so amazing to me that, despite having the means and opportunity, God did the exact opposite.

The greatest designer baby ever was God’s Son in the flesh, Jesus. He was a part of the Godhead (John 1:1-2); He was the vehicle of creation (John 1:3); and, He was born into the flesh through the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:18). His coming had been announced since the earliest days of creation (Genesis 3:15).

Yet this baby was born of humble means (Luke 2:7). He was physically human (Hebrews 2:14; 1 Timothy 2:5). And He did not have many advantages in life (Matthew 8:20, 19:21).

Despite being God in the flesh, Jesus faced terrible hardships as a man. He experienced hunger, thirst, and pain. He bled and He died. His precious blood was shed in fulfillment of a plan that was laid before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:19-20).

Yet, God had something greater in store. Jesus arose on the 3rd day, coming back to life as an example to all those who would believe in Him for eternal life. And God has something greater in store for you too!

Your soul is genetically engineered for eternal life…the only question is where you will spend eternity. Live faithfully in Christ today and have a home with God forever.

An Unusual Mortality Event

whales-are-washing-upA few weeks ago, my oldest daughter was given a school assignment to find a story in the news about a beached whale and write a report about it. She found one involving dozens of whales washing ashore in Alaska. Now, her story was on the whales, but what caught my attention was a little phrase they used to describe the beachings: “unusual mortality event.”

An “unusual mortality event,” (UME) is defined as, “a stranding that is unexpected; involves a significant die-off of any marine mammal population; and demands immediate response.” UME is a term that allows the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to go into immediate action to investigate problems with oceanic mammals.

“Unusual” mammal deaths seem to catch our attention and tug at our heartstrings. And that is understandable. We have a deep desire to know “why” and to fix the problem.

But an even greater tragedy occurs en masse today, and few people seem to care about fixing the problem these days…spiritual mortality events!

Millions of “beached souls” are lost every day unnecessarily. Ephesians 2:1-3 points out that sin caused us to lose something precious. We become the walking dead, sons of disobedience who live for the fleshly lusts of this world only. If we continue in our ways, we will spend eternity separated from God.

But, thankfully, an even greater death took place. The most unusual mortality event ever…a death that didn’t last!

It may just have seemed like just another crucifixion in a long stream of Roman brutality, but it was altogether different. The Son of God hung on the cross and died for our sins. And He conquered death for you and me. And that’s an unusual mortality event!

But His death requires immediate action! Are you a Christian? Don’t idly watch as soul after soul washes ashore on the beach of sin! Bring the message of life to those who are perishing.

And if you are living in sin today, please know that He died so you don’t have to die. Want more info? Get in touch…