A vehicle for venting on philosophy, religion, and the general state of things. Proprietor: C. W. Powell

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

You Didn't Ask to Be Born? Who did? What Makes You So Special?

Hatred of Fathers, the Death of a Culture

Honor thy father and thy mother, which is the first commandment with promise. –Ephesians 6:2

A generation that turns against mother and father is an atheistic generation. The
promise referred to above is, “That thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord
thy God giveth you.” (Ex. 20)

A revolutionary generation has no future, because it denies the past. The history of
such movements is dreary indeed. The revolutionary mindset wants to overthrow
everything and start fresh, for they see no value in that which has gone before. Filled
with their own pride and ignorance, they imagine themselves to be victims of the past
and good in their intentions and their goals. They hate the generations that have gone
before, despise their accomplishments, magnify their weaknesses and failure. They
forget that true progress is always the result of building on the past, not rejecting it.

At root is the revolutionary’s hatred for God. After all, it is God who is the ultimate
Father, who provides all things, and works all things after the counsel of His own will.
If we despise our earthly fathers, what is that but despising the God who gave us our
fathers? Hatred of parents indicates a feeling of victimhood that is rooted in hatred of
God, despising His gifts.

When men are unthankful, is it any wonder that they turn in hatred against their
parents. “I didn’t ask to be born,” they complain. True enough. God made that decision
and decided who the instruments would be. This hatred is directed against God

Love for God means love for His works. The real truth is that what we are, we are by
the decree and purpose of God. The most important things about us are not the result of
our choices, but because of God’s purpose and plan. We did not choose our sex, the
color of our skin, the economic status and class into which we were born, the color of
our eyes, the century of our birth, the place and citizenship of our birth, and ten
thousand other things.

Hatred of parents is just ill disguised hatred of God, who used our parents to
accomplish His purpose and plan for who we are, where we are and when we are. We
use hatred of parents in order to justify rebellion against God for who we are, and some
people spend their whole lives in venting this hatred. We seek to impose our will on
the will of God, with frightful consequences to ourselves and to our generation.

Honor of parents does not mean that we do not recognize whatever faults they may
have, their unbelief, or sinful lifestyles. It does not mean that Christians do not witness
to unbelieving parents and seek to win them for Christ. But whatever failures and sins
our parents may have do not change a fundamental truth: it was God’s will for them
to be our parents, so that we might be born exactly who we are. If we can be thankful
to God for that, then we can be thankful to God for our parents, for they were God’s
instrument in bringing God’s gifts, especially the precious gift of life, to us.

You cannot hate your parents without hating yourself and the God who made you.

First published in Basket of Figs, February, 1999.  Slight modifications.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Prayer on Psalm 119:1-8

O most precious and Holy Father in Heaven, we read the words, “Blessed are the
undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD,” and our tender consciences
are stricken with gloom and misery. You have commanded us to keep thy precepts
diligently. We are to keep Your testimonies and seek You with our whole heart.

But our reality is so different from that, O Father. How can we be blessed if Your
blessing depends upon us doing no iniquity and perfectly walking in Your ways. We
confess with Your beloved Apostle that, “if we say we have no sin, we deceive
ourselves and the truth is not in us.” We would despair if You had not shown us
another, a better way.

You have also said that those are blessed unto whom the Lord does not impute sin.
This is what Your friend Abraham found, for He believed You and it was accounted to
Him for righteousness. We would go in that way, O Lord, the way of faith.

Indeed, We long for You to direct our ways to keep Your statues. Then we will not be
ashamed, for we will have respect unto all Your commandments. But this means that
we must not seek to direct our own ways, to think our own thoughts, to seek our own
righteousness, for this is the way of death.

You sent Your Blessed Son to teach us this better way, the way of faith and trust in His
precious blood which takes away all our sins. Because You have freely loved us when
we were yet in our sins, our Lord Jesus, the Christ, died for the ungodly, ungodly
people like we are, O Lord.

We were lost and undone, but You sent forth Your Son to redeem us, to bring us to
God, when we could not climb the steep way to God. You purchased us to be Your
own, and we no longer belong to ourselves, to walk in our own ways, seek our own
thoughts and live in our own righteousness. We belong to You, body and soul, for the
blood of Christ cleanses us from all sins.
You have given Your children the blessed Spirit of God to teach and lead us in Your
holy way, having forgiven us all our trespasses. None of those who believe in You will
ever be ashamed because we rest in Your perfect and holy righteousness.

Thank You, Lord, for teaching us the way of Your righteous judgments, that our Lord
Jesus bore the fullness of Your wrath against sin, so that we might be freed from its
condemnation and wrath, to enjoy Your love and fellowship forever. You are teaching
us both to will and to do of Your good pleasure, and for this we give You thanks, in the
Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, whose own we are. Amen.

“1 Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD. 2 Blessed
are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. 3 They also
do no iniquity: they walk in his ways. 4 Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts
diligently. 5 O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes! 6 Then shall I not be
ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments. 7 I will praise thee with
uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments. 8 I will keep
thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.” (Ps 119:1-8)

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Prayer: Romans 16:25-27

Our Father in Heaven, this morning we would magnify You in our hearts and minds,
and also by the words of our mouth. We join together in your praises for you are
worthy of all the praises of men.

We have no strength of our own, but we stand only in the Gospel, which was preached
by Your Only Begotten Son, Jesus of Nazareth and confirmed by those who heard
Him. We thank you that you have revealed the mystery that was hidden from the
beginning of the world but revealed through the preaching of the apostles and the
scriptures of the holy prophets.

This only is the foundation of our faith, that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the One
promised from the creation of the world, promised to fulfill His divine office of the
prophet, priest, and king of our redemption. His words reveal You, O Father, for He is
Your precious Son, Light of Light, Truth of Truth, and Life of Life, begotten of You
before the world was, sent by You to teach us the right and good way, the way of faith.

He is our Priest, offering up Himself in the body of His flesh as a sacrifice for sins to
satisfy Your holy law and a demonstration of your love and grace. He is our King, who
rules over us in righteousness and defeats all our enemies, the world, the flesh, and the

He is God and man, we confess, O Father, One with You in Godhead, but also one
with us in humanity as a son of Adam and the Son of David to reign over your people
in righteousness and truth forever and ever.

We rejoice that we have been given the glorious privilege of being your heralds, to
spread this gospel to the world. We can proclaim forgiveness of sins and proclaim
liberty to the lost and dying, for you have commanded that this Gospel be preached to
the entire world until the end of the world, for the mystery hidden from the beginning
of the world is that salvation through faith is freely offered to all people.

You are the only wise God, for this glorious gospel was not the invention of men, nor
had it entered into the heart of any man, but God revealed it through Jesus Christ and
the prophets of both the Old and New Testaments. We magnify Your holy Name, O
Lord God Almighty, for Your ways and righteousness and truth, judgment and mercy,
forever and ever, through the blood of Christ. Amen.


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