I have decided to create a 2nd blog. This one (middletree.blogspot.com) will be the more spiritually-focused site. For cultural commentary, I now have http://highdefculture.wordpress.com/ Please visit and comment!
If you know any Christians, or are one yourself, you may have seen Jefferson Bethke's 4-minute poem titled "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus". It's become quite popular in just a few days. Bethke is sincere, passionate, and mostly off-track.
The bulk of his message is that old standby "It's not about religion, it's about a relationship", which has been around at least since I came back to the Lord in 1987. It was refreshing and
eye-opening at the time, but here we are a quarter-century later, and
it's still being said as if it were a brand new concept.And that would be fine if it were in line with Scripture, but in fact, it's in opposition to what God's word says.
I have searched the Bible to see where it says anything negative
about Religion, and it isn't in there. It's fairly easy to find a passage where the writer denounces those following a false religion, or not following their
religion well. But the concept of …
For those who are not aware, I am very politically conservative. Small government, strong defense, pro-life, etc. I have also been very vocal that I do not think Donald Trump was a wise choice to be president. It's led to a lot of good conversations with my pro-Trump friends and those who are not. One very good friend, who I admire greatly and who has been an excellent example to me in many ways, is a Trump defender and asked me to read the text of Dr Robert Jeffress' inaugural address. Here is my email to my friend.
1. The Wall
Dr. Jeffress points point that God enabled Nehemiah to build a wall to protect His people from their enemies. Although many of Trump's critics have opposed the idea of a wall, I have not commented on this myself, because in truth, I am torn. I agree that it's the …
"Wild Grace" by Max Lucado and James Lund, is a spinoff of Lucado's book, simply titled "Grace". The difference between the two is that "Wild Grace" is specifically targeted toward teens. I asked for and received a free copy from Booksneeze for review purposes, thinking that perhaps my oldest two kids, age 11, might benefit from it. As it turns out, some of the stories conveyed in "Wild Grace" touch on topics, including drugs and pornography, that my kids aren't quite ready to read about, so I'm reviewing this from my point of view, not theirs.
But even though it's not quite right for preteens, I came away very impressed with the book. It's interspersed with stories form the bible and with stories from modern-day believers who have experienced God's grace in countless ways. In one particularly stirring story, a man talks of his introduction to internet porn as a teen, and the ways that God came through at the time, an…