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Week in Review: 4.2016

  • The Hillary Clinton classified email issue keeps getting worse. She not only mishandled thousands of classified documents at the highest security levels, but also now we learn that some of those documents were from human intelligence agents operating live in the field.  If ever there was a symbol of how blue-elites are protected by blue-media, this is a huge one. No one, on either side of the red/blue line would doubt that if the situation were reversed and it were a red person, especially one running for President, Blue Media would have created a firestorm that would have precipitated at least an indictment by now, if not prison…where many now sit for having done less. Having spent years in the world of dealing with and protecting Top Secret/SCI/SAP, where the severity and clarity of the law regarding all of this is drilled into you by annual briefings, it is a head-shaker how this criminal breach remains a non-starter in the media. Though Federal law appears to have been broken, there is no outcry. One of our great freedoms in this nation is the freedom of the press. But that freedom is not there so that you can simply get a newspaper every day and read the comics or the sports or even the news. The freedom of the press is important to a free society because it represents the public, non-governmental means by which wrongs, especially by the government, can be made public and the means by which public officials or prominent persons can be called to task. When the media fails in this regard, by aligning itself to a party or power or some other self-serving reason, then it abdicates its most important public responsibility to cry out against that which is wrong. Blue Media has abdicated this role and we suffer deeply…deeply because of it.
  • Oil is not only down in price, but it is going to go further. The Obama-who-cares-about-the-Constitution Treaty with Iran will soon kick in at full throttle. When it does, we can be assured they will dump everything they can into the oil market. Low prices are nothing to them. They haven’t gotten anything out of it for years, but now they have been granted the open door to flood the market and they will. Why? To destroy the U.S. oil industry…which is the ultimate agenda…whether you are Iranian or Green or Blue.
  • Big headlines this week declared that last year was the warmest year on record…that is unless you look at it from a different perspective. Satellite temperature readings don’t confirm that record. Only the ground stations do. But, since the 1900’s when NOAA decided to drop half of the weather stations used for its official records (stations that had a tendency to record temperatures that didn’t support a warming planet), the ground station data, including altered raw data from NASA-GISS, has consistently supported the movement of Global Warming/Climate Change/Give us your Money/Destroy Coal and Oil. If you look at the charts comparing the ground station reporting and the satellite reporting, the ground stations show a remarkable rise in earth’s temperature. The satellite data shows that it has been flat, if not a slight decline over the last sixteen years. But the satellite data doesn’t provide the necessary “crisis” that good old Marxist style thinking requires in order to effect a “revolution” or what we moderns like to more subtly call “change”. I keep hoping someone is going to finally do an investigative report on all of the shenanigans here…but, again, you have to fight Blue Media.
  • The mayor of New York City blasted the upcoming Oscars with the charge of racism because none of the finalists are black. Will Smith, whom I greatly respect as an actor, is calling for a boycott. Others are as well. This is a terribly embarrassing situation for a Hollywood culture that loves to gush over each other and embrace everything and everyone as “darling”. But it is very messy because the only practical solution to calm the outrage is to come up with assurances that are backed by some form of quotas for the nominees: X% black, Y% Hispanic, Z% Asian. But I suppose there will also have to be a percentage for Lesbian, for Gay, for Transgendered, or even for Asexual or a number of the other categories for which someone might cry “foul” because they didn’t make the final list. Otherwise, I suppose you could have an award for the best black actor, the best Jewish actor, etc. All of this will be worked out in an unwritten quota, of course, but it will be there in some form. This current flap, however, is due to the obvious lack of blacks in the list. But in the end, any kind of quota, unfortunately becomes an actual slap in the face of black people. Me, I don’t really care to watch Hollywood pat each other on the back and fawn over each other. So, I won’t be watching. I’m not boycotting, I just don’t care for the Hollywood culture. But maybe it wouldn’t be such a bad thing after all…, if no one watched, that is…, any of it.
  • Donald Trump was trying to impress his evangelical audience with an “I’m one of you” talk where he referenced a Bible verse that he “loves”. The problem was that he called it “Two Corinthians 3:17”. This is much like the current President early on in his first term, wanting to show his alignment with the military, “just one of the men”, referring to the “Corpse”. Unfortunately, current politics takes us into these areas where we try to deceive people in order to gain their votes…even saying “Hey, I’m one of you” when they really aren’t.
  • Fanny Mae looks as if it is unfortunately heading back to its pre-2008 track that led to the ugly financial collapse.  The Federal Government, in its new “HomeReady” program, has released new mandates to grant loans to those who really shouldn’t be carrying a mortgage debt—especially targeting high-risk immigrants. As Cal Thomas writes, “The administration apparently believes that by changing the dirty words ‘subprime’ to ‘alternative’ mortgages, the process will be more palatable to the public.” Investors.com writes that the program should be titled “DefaultReady” because it is the same risky path that brought us to the 2008 disaster. I sometimes wonder what is in the water in Washington D.C. that so thoroughly destroys common sense.
  • Sad news for those of us who deeply care about the antiquities…ISIS completely destroyed Saint Elijah, one of the oldest Christian monasteries in the world. Gone. Bulldozed. Plowed under. Much like what they have done to other ancient sites, such as the 2,000 year-old temple in Palmyra. But, of course, material value pales in comparison to human value…the rape and torture and slaughter of thousands of non-combatants. The city of Ramadi is practically a pile of rubble, but that rubble is nothing in comparison to the 200 slaughtered Syrian children or videos of Christians executed or girls being opening captured as sex slaves or 1500 POWs massacred or Coptic Christians beheaded for their video cameras. One leader chanted “We will not stop hunting Christians and burning churches. Christians are Allah’s enemies!” And yet, we are too squeamish to actually state what the first “I” in ISIS stands for. It might offend someone.
  • A case is winding its way upward regarding the de-criminalization of polygamy. Federal appeal judges are now questioning Utah’s law that bans plural marriage. Without any transcendent ethic regarding what marriage really is, it is hard to imagine that the courts in our nation will be able to make any kind of logical case for why we can no longer ban homosexual marriage but we can ban plural marriage. Unless something drastically changes, it’s coming. It’s just a matter of time.
  • The passing grade for the GED exam was lowered this week. The reason? Because GED students in “some” states were performing better in college that traditional high school graduates. So, rather than keeping a higher standard, which is often met by home-schoolers, we lower the standard to match a declining level of scholarship in our public high schools…a downward slope that has put us dead last in math, problem solving and near the bottom in literacy compared to 22 other developed nations. The GED should at least try to hold some line of competence, one would rationally think.
  • Although this is not new, a suit was filed this week to remove any reference to God on our paper money and coins. Michael Newdow claims that this is a violation of his religious freedom. Instead, he would like for America to embrace his form of religion: none at all. He wins, we lose. These attempts have not won in the past, but the state of our nation is one that increasingly embraces the atheistic worldview, at least publicly, and we grant enormous power to the individual…especially the one that cries “I am offended”. The “offense of the one” is gaining tyrannical power in our culture. I have a sense this time the move to publicly erase the last vestige of “God” in our culture might succeed.

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Delegator

[preface] I have come to be in awe of this attribute of God, for it reveals to us one of the most remarkable characteristics of His nature and, I would dare say, even the very heart of God. As such, it is not surprising that we see it deeply manifested in every aspect of life.

God delegates.

It is not a word that is literally found in the Bible, just as we will not find omnipotent or omniscient or triune, but the delegations of God are unmistakably revealed in both the Scriptures and throughout the general revelation of what He has made.

It was first manifested in creation…easiest to see when He created plants. He didn’t create them as mere endpoints, but instead delegated to them the authority and responsibility to bring forth new plant life. He created them for this purpose. He did the same with the animals and man. We were created and then equipped and sent to multiply and fill the earth.

Unfortunately, this is too familiar to us and we therefore may miss the enormity of this amazing aspect of His nature. God is infinite in creative power. He could have been the forever progenitor of every plant, animal and human throughout time. He could have not made us male and female. He could have made the plants without pistils or stamens. He could have not made seeds or fruit or bees for pollination.

He could have made everything sterile…with Him being the continual-Creator, creating each and every new plant, each new cub, each new baby…or rather each new mature life, for there wouldn’t have been a need for seeds to grow or parents to nurture cubs or fawns or babies. There would have been no seeds. There would have been no parents.

But He didn’t create this way.

In fact, I will go so far as to say that He couldn’t have made His Creation sterile, because that would be contrary to His own nature. God is the God of life, yes, but almost more importantly He is the God who delegates. And when it comes to life, He delegated to His creatures the authority and power and capability to, themselves, create new living creatures…after their own kind. For their delegated authority was limited. They were not given the power to create life after another kind. They were given the authority and the means to create life after their own kind…only.

And God was pleased with this. He was zealous for this.

He has a zeal for His creatures to flourish.

And this flourishing, this “fruit” of His creatures, brings their Creator great glory.

This is the God who delegates.

But He does not delegate authority just for the reproduction of new life; He also delegates the authority to carry out other aspects of His purposes and plans.

This too, is for His glory.

This is why He sends.

This is why Moses was sent to Egypt rather than God going to Pharaoh Himself.

This is why God chose to send Jonah to Ninevah…and Elijah to Ahab…and Paul to the Gentiles.

This is why you and I are sent. This is why we are commanded to agape our neighbor.

This is the God who delegates.

This is the God who created social order and delegated within those social systems the notion of power and authority as well as submission. The husband does not have authority because of his own worth. He has authority because God has delegated it to him. He must therefore use it wisely and in accordance with God’s design, with fear and trembling, for he bears that authority only as it has been delegated to him by God. If he uses that authority in accordance with God’s design, there will be great blessing. If he becomes arrogant or haughty with that authority or abdicates that authority, he will suffer divine consequences…and most likely his family as well.

The king carries authority and bears the sword only because God has delegated that authority to him. He is to use that authority to punish evil and to condone that which is good. If he rules with righteousness, there will be blessings. If he reigns with arrogance and pride, he will find himself in a pasture, insane and eating grass like a cow. Maybe not exactly like Nebuchadnezzar, but his judgment will come…sooner or later. If he thumbs his nose at the God of the Universe, if he rules with wickedness and evil, with oppression and theft, with injustice and bribery and selfishness…then he will suffer divine consequences…and his nation as well.

Every one of the social systems that God has created carries their design and authority because of the God who delegates. In fact, the entire universe reflects this aspect of God’s nature, for even the atoms were created with delegated functionality. Chemical compounds fulfill the delegated purposes of God. The sun and the nuclear reactions operating within it fulfill the delegated purposes of God. The combination of elements, like hydrogen and oxygen forming water, are a vital piece of fulfilling the delegated plans and purposes of God.

And you and I have been delegated one of the greatest responsibilities in all of creation. For you and I have been delegated the authority and responsibility to be witnesses…to bear the good news…to bear the fruit of the Spirit of God…to speak of Him, act of Him, live our lives as a testimony of Him.

Why?

Because He has delegated to us the responsibility of proclaiming who He is to the world around us. He could fully show Himself in all of His glory at any minute of any day. But He doesn’t. Why? Because He has delegated that responsibility to us. We have the privilege of manifesting His glory. And in some strange way, His glory is magnified when it comes through His creatures.

This is so contrary to our sinful lust for power and control. When we obtain power, we generally misuse it or crave for more.

God gives it away.

The king rarely gives up power and authority. He usually grabs all he can, consolidating authority and power until he bloats on it and the whole culture collapses.

But God delegates His authority and His power. He gives it freely and willingly so that His creatures might be fruitful and that fruit, in turn, brings Him glory.

Jesus was the perfect example of a “delegate”. The Father granted authority to Him. Somehow in the mystery of the Trinity we have this nature of God manifested eternally within the Godhead: the Father delegating authority to the Son; the Father sending the Son; the Son only saying what the Father gives Him to say.

And the Son, in turn, granted authority to His disciples…and to us.

This is where the king gets his authority; the husband his authority; the pastor his authority; the owner his authority; the child of God his authority to speak and witness and bear the truth of the good news and manifest the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place; light; salt…and who is equal to such a task?

Oh how awesome is our God, that He should delegate to us such a precious and valuable task!

If we were fully perceptive enough in all of this, I would suppose that we would then come to our senses and recognize why He has granted us the mysterious authority to ask of Him, to petition Him, such that if we do not ask, we do not have. Herein lies the great puzzle of the delegation of a perfect God to His imperfect creatures.

“For He seems to do nothing of Himself which He can possibly delegate to His creatures. He commands us to do slowly and blunderingly what He could do perfectly and in the twinkling of an eye.” C. S. Lewis

 

Verses to ponder throughout the week:

And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:11-12

And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:28

The decision is announced by messengers, the holy ones declare the verdict, so that the living may know that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes and sets over them the lowliest of people. Daniel 4:17

Seven times will pass by for you until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes. Daniel 4:25

For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak. John 12:49

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Matthew 28:18

 …and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. 2 Timothy 2:2

Did he not make them one…? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring. Malachi 2:15

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Rom 13:1

…and just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. Luke 22:29-30

For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. John 5:26

For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. John 17:2

As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. John 17:18

The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; John 17:22

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence… 2 Peter 1:3

But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today. Deuteronomy 8:18

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. Matthew 28:19-20

 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10

Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all. 1 Corinthians 15:24-28

But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life. And who is equal to such a task? 2 Corinthians 2:14-16


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Playing the Race Card at the Wrong Time

I received my Master’s degree from Auburn University. When I was there, probably the best athlete in the history of athletes was competing on the football and baseball fields: Bo Jackson. There were others there as well: Charles Barkley, Chuck Person. Some years later, another great athlete took Auburn to a national championship: Cam Newton. Maybe Cam isn't a better athlete than Bo, but he is close. He is good…very good.

I was a Cam guy. Loved him when he played for Auburn. But when he got to the pros and started all of his “all about me” stuff, I started to wince. I really don’t like it when athletes act as if it is all about them…“Look at me” dances and all of that. I have always thought that if I were an NFL coach the first thing I would tell my players is that nothing in this game is all about you. If you score a touchdown, it is because you had ten other guys doing their part, including the rest of the team, the practice squad, the coaches, the support staff…even the water boy. If they don’t do their part you don’t score. If you sack the quarterback, it isn’t because you did it all by yourself. The rest of the defense had a hand in it. If you happen to do something, score a touchdown, sack the quarterback, tackle the running back behind the line, catch a pass…run back and thank the guys who made it possible. Don’t let me catch you acting like it is all about you or I am going to assume that you are not a team player and you can sit on the bench until you change your attitude. And if you can’t change your attitude, then you can change your team.

But, I’m not an NFL coach.

You see, I look at guys like Johnny Football and I have to say, I don’t like him. That’s a bit strong, because I really don’t know him. But I don’t like how he acts.

I remember how much I used to like Carmelo Anthony when he was playing basketball in college. Then he got to the NBA and got an attitude. I don’t like many NBA players because of their attitudes. I stopped watching professional basketball because of it. I didn’t like Jimmy Connors because of his attitude on the tennis court. Baseball Carlos Perez type antics don’t sit well with me. Even players on my personal favorite teams get a big thumbs down from me when they act like it’s all about them. I don’t mind them showing emotion with their teammates after a good play, that’s a great part of the game and why I prefer watching high school and college sports more than professional sports. They don't tolerate attitudes down there.

I guess it is just the plague of our culture. We are becoming so self-centered…so “all about me”…and I can’t stand it when I see it on the field. Maybe I’m supposed to go along with it all…but I can’t.

But...it has nothing to do with race.

So, when Cam now says that people don’t like him because he is black, it is a poor time to drop the race card. There are times when it is proper. We still have some racial problems in this nation…on all sides of the color lines, and when it is appropriate, it should be discussed out in the open.

But this isn’t one of them. In fact, when you drop the card at the wrong time, it just makes it less meaningful when it is the right time. It’s like the old story of the boy who cried wolf. After a while, no body cares anymore. And when the cry is real, nobody listens. That’s a shame.

How often has the race card been played by Obama supporters? Hundreds of times, if not thousands. But, guess what? I don’t oppose him because of his skin, I oppose him because of his worldview and his policies and his actions. I was pulling for Ben Carson in the early part of the cycle and would have been ecstatic if he had become president. I am a complete fan of Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell. I was at the White House when Clarence Thomas was sworn in, watching with tears in my eyes because of what he had to go through and how much I had been pulling for him through a horrific gauntlet. They happen to have the same skin tone as Obama.

It isn’t the race that makes for my opposition.

To say that it is, is crying wolf when there is no wolf.

So, come on, Cam. Let’ s use the card wisely.

Truth is, I really do like you. I actually like it when you smile and have fun playing the game. That was what endeared me and a lot of folks to Carmelo. And if you would keep the smile and drop the self-centered stuff, I would be your biggest fan again. And guess what, it wouldn’t be because you changed skin tone. Because it isn’t about skin tone.

It’s just the wrong time to be playing the race card.

“…true agape love does not brag or boast or parade itself or display itself haughtily, it is not puffed up or arrogant or conceited or filled with pride or inflates oneself, it does not act unbecoming, it does not seek its own, not selfish, nor self-centered…” 1 Corinthians 13:4-5 (NIV, NAS, NKJV, ESV, AMP, AMPC, Vines)


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Week in Review: 5.2016

  • A survey of teenagers released this week reveals they average eleven hours per day in front of a screen: smartphone, television, gaming. Most of the television time is spent streaming via Netflix. Top apps are Instagram and Twitter. Top presidential pick: Bernie Sanders.
  • Hard to imagine how the Hillary Hoax could get worse. Now the FBI says that there are emails so classified and so damaging that they cannot be released even with redacting. This is most likely because the information is coming from human agents and releasing the emails would endanger not only their lives and others lives, but it would damage the methods, means, and infrastructure we use to gather that intelligence. Again, any mere mortal would have been cuffed and either in jail or facing charges. But, again, we are not dealing with a mere red mortal, but a blue mortal which Blue Media will protect until it appears they will damage themselves if they do not act. How deeply unfortunate that we have lost the media as an unbiased watchdog.
  • News out of Maryland reveals that a public high school forced students to profess the Islamic statement of faith. When a father learned that his Christian child was being forced to acknowledge that there is no God but Allah and Mohammed is Allah’s messenger, he called to “opt” his child out. The vice-principal called back and told him that not only could his daughter not opt out but she would also receive zeroes if she didn’t do the assignments, even if they violated their family’s religious beliefs. The father, a Marine veteran, was then banned him from the school property. It’s possible that the Marine may have said something a little blunt, which I might of as well, but he contends he never threatened any physical harm to anyone. This is all now in the stage of a lawsuit filed on behalf of the parents by Thomas More Law Center. When the State takes control of the schools, it usually doesn’t bode well for freedom.
  • President-King Obama has issued another royal decree that the federal government will demand male/female pay-scale data from a hundred thousand of the largest U.S. businesses. This decree carries the ominous threat of federal investigation if they aren’t paying their employees according to how the federal government wants them to be paid. The Federal Arm is getting longer and stronger by the day.
  • The Obama Federal Health decree has reached the end of its patience. Your time has run out. If you don’t have health insurance, even if you don’t want health insurance and would prefer to pay as you go, the Kingdom is going to punish you. The “conform or else” deadline is midnight tonight. It actually would have been so much more dramatic and appropriate if it had been “high noon” for you to surrender and buy into the federal plan. If not, you are going to be fined $695 per adult and $347 per child. A family of four, therefore, will get fined $2084 OR 2.5% of their “household” income, whichever is “greater”. If you are in the upper-middle income bracket, it could be $3000 or more. So, even though you might think that it is a better deal for you to “self-insure”, the Kingdom has decreed you will be punished unless you bow down and pay into the “system”. Worse, if you are a lower income family but in conscience believe this is wrong, your family will still have to come up with the 2 grand fine for your failure to bow the knee. For those who are still familiar with the Founders, take the time to craft a short "letter to the editor" that might have come from their quills on this.
  • Bernie Sanders answered the “God” question this week, although he hasn’t been mum on it in the past. He response was “I think everyone believes in God in their own way. To me, it means that all of us are connected, all of life is connected, and that we are all tied together.” This actually falls way short of The Force. It is more like the Hollywood grab a hand, pass a Coke, and sing ‘we are the world’ kind of thing. But, it is much more honest that Donald Trump trying to convince evangelicals that he is one of them by holding up a Bible that his mom gave him when he was a little boy.
  • As most people expected, Iran went on a “giga” buying spree after we set them lose from sanctions and opened access to their gold vaults via Obama’s unconstitutional treaty. They bought 118 Airbus aircraft and a lot of contracts for steel, energy and shipbuilding. When you bring such big money, even the Romans capitulate. They covered up the their statue’s “immodest” parts so as not to be “offensive” to the guys with the gold. The biggest deal, however, was made with energy giant Total to guarantee purchase of 200,000 barrels of Iranian crude oil per day. Keep your eye out for a further collapse in oil prices and big damage to the U.S. oil industry...and, worst of all, the eventual nuclear capability of Iran. In my estimation, this is going to be one of the greatest foreign policy blunders in the history of the U.S. A Senate with any backbone would have called the President-King on the carpet for this. It was a law-breaking deal.
  • Russia is testing the waters again. Friday they sent a fighter-bomber (SU-34) into Turkey’s airspace. This is similar to what they did two months ago when Turkey shot it down. These are win-win actions by the Russians. If Turkey and NATO do nothing, then the Russians learn something valuable. If Turkey shoots or even brings it down, they gain further justification for military advances in Syria and elsewhere. The telltale is that Putin didn’t respond to either Turkey’s President Erdogan or NATO’s Secretary General Stoltenberg. It is in his best interest not to engage in a conversation with either. He is too busy moving his pieces into place.

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Deliverer

The word “deliverer” in the context of God’s nature is one that conveys His desire and propensity to “rescue” His people or “take them out” of danger or distress. This is true in both the Old and New Testaments where God delivers from physical, temporal danger, but ultimately, and more importantly, from the infinite danger of the coming wrath of God and the eternal separation because of sin. God has been gracious to record for us the many, many instances of delivering His people from the temporal to help give us the assurance that He has and will eventually deliver us spiritually.

To a great extent, God has been “delivering” His people since the fall. Instead of wiping everything out, He promised a deliverer would come and crush the head of the serpent. When the depravity of mankind had so filled the earth that God had to destroy it, He delivered Noah and his family from the catastrophic deluge. When the children of Israel had fallen into slavery in Egypt, He delivered them from the bondage of Pharaoh.

He delivered David from the sword of Goliath and Saul.

He delivered Daniel from the lions, and Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego from the king’s furnace.

He delivered Peter from Herod’s prison and Paul from the assassins.

In Hezekiah’s day, He delivered His people from Sennacherib and the Assyrian hoard.

He delivered Joseph from the evil intentions of his brothers.

He delivered the disciples from the storm and Christ from the tomb.

There is hardly any place in the Scripture where we do not see God delivering His people.

He is not only the Deliverer, but He is the faithful Deliverer. For He has not only showed us over and over again that He has been the mighty Deliverer in the past, but He will also be the mighty Deliverer in the future.

This is the basis for our hope.

For one day, as Paul cried, He will deliver us from the body of this death…both the outer man that physically decays by the day and the inner, sinful man, that seeks to decay us from within.

O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! Romans 7:24-25

In the meantime, He has delivered us from hopelessness…a woeful state of being enemies and haters of God, spiritually dead and slaves to our sinful nature, to a glorious state of being alive with Christ, redeemed from our bondage to death.

He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:13-14

Sometimes God delivers through a miracle; sometimes He delivers through an angel or a human agent, like Moses or Jonah. Most often, however, He chooses to deliver by providing us a way of escape: through saying “no” to our sinful nature and the temptation of the world; by walking away from the edge of a cliff or a cat that is hissing; by working hard to overcome the obstacles or challenges in front of us.

What this means, contrary to our selfish desires, is that God will seldom deliver us from those things which He has given us the means by which we can deliver ourselves. He may not deliver you from starvation if you refuse to work. He may not deliver you from consequences if you refuse to say "no". He may not deliver you from loneliness if you refuse to engage with others. If you foolishly jump into a den of lions, you may get eaten. If you stick your hand into a furnace, you will most likely get burned. Don't mistake the Deliverer as One who rewards foolishness or laziness or self-centeredness. The Deliverer is not a grand Genie by which we can rub the lamp to remove the consequences of our folly. Now, he has certainly rescued this fool from his folly on many occasions, but it is not that we can demand it of Him.

When we pray “deliver us from evil”, He may do so through a miracle or a Moses. But most likely it will be through the means by which He has graciously granted us to walk and persevere in this life: prayer, the Word and a band of brothers, for example.

And, when He calls us to do this work through these means, it is His Spirit that enables us to do so.

He may deliver, therefore, immediately through the miracle. He may deliver sometime soon, through a Moses. But it may be that He delivers after a long time of hard work and perseverance.

But it will come.

The Deliverer will deliver.

In the end. Always.

In the meantime, Remnant, persevere with great hope.

 

May we contemplate this aspect of God’s nature throughout the week. Here are some passages to help us. Remember that all of the stories of God’s deliverance in the past are means of encouragement to us in the present, that God has proven Himself over and over again and He will be faithful to deliver us as well.

The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2

And David spoke to the Lord the words of this song on the day when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer… 2 Samuel 22:1-2

Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. Exodus 6:6

God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant in the earth, and to keep you alive by a great deliverance. Genesis 45:7

When the sons of Israel cried to the Lord, the Lord raised up a deliverer for the sons of Israel to deliver them… Judges 3:9

And David said, “The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” 1 Samuel 17:37

But the Lord your God you shall fear; and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies.” 2 Kings 17:39

For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14

You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance. Psalm 32:7

I sought the Lord, and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears. Psalm 34:4

The righteous cry, and the Lord hears And delivers them out of all their troubles. Psalm 34:17

All my bones will say, “Lord, who is like You, Who delivers the afflicted from him who is too strong for him, And the afflicted and the needy from him who robs him?” Psalm 35:10

For You have delivered my soul from death, Indeed my feet from stumbling, So that I may walk before God In the light of the living. Psalm 56:13

But I am afflicted and needy; Hasten to me, O God! You are my help and my deliverer; O Lord, do not delay. Psalm 70:5

Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He delivered them out of their distresses. Psalm 107:6

He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, But he who walks wisely will be delivered. Proverbs 28:26

Even to your old age I will be the same, And even to your graying years I will bear you! I have done it, and I will carry you; And I will bear you and I will deliver you. Isaiah 46:4

If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. Daniel 3:17

He delivers and rescues and performs signs and wonders In heaven and on earth, Who has also delivered Daniel from the power of the lions. Daniel 6:27

O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! Romans 7:24-25

…we had the sentence of death within ourselves so that we would not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead; who delivered us from so great a peril of death, and will deliver us, He on whom we have set our hope. And He will yet deliver us… 2 Corinthians 10:9-10

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father… Galatians 1:3-4

He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:13-14

For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10

Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. Hebrews 2:14-15


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