Posts Tagged ‘rapture’

When the Feast of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Without warning there was a sound like a strong wind, gale force—no one could tell where it came from. It filled the whole building. Then, like a wildfire, the Holy Spirit spread through their ranks, and they started speaking in a number of different languages as the Spirit prompted them. (Acts 2:1-4 MSG)

Yeah, those were the good ol’ days, eh?

Today, the church spends cash, not time, to muster God

Courtesy: Jews for Jesus

Folk gathered together. In one accord even. Ready to worship God just because he is God.

They were not concerned about what tunic to wear in case “that saint” sees them. They did not get all up in a stiff wind when Captain Christian walks by and does not call on them to be the fill-in usher.

No, these were people who loved Jesus because he loved them, didn’t have sins in the closet (largely because they didn’t know how to hide them) and most importantly, discovered that it didn’t matter what song was playing softly in the background, they could still press in and experience Christ.

It seems people are spending all kinds of cash to bring God down to their level instead of time in prayer to get the Church to go up to his level. That should not be. Big churches are nice only if they can be broken down one small church at a time.

These days? Not so much.

People are pretentious, megalomaniacal, self-centered and disinterested in dealing with common prayers. And those are just a smattering of today’s megachurch pastor. Let’s not discuss the “Sunday brunch attending, no manners having, get on my last nerves being” saints just warming a pew. Lord have mercy.

There are some that desire to touch the hem of his garment still, which is why, according to this story in the Denver Post and Yahoo! News, some folk are leaving the church and deciding to be the Church elsewhere.

Megachurch, meet microchurch. Growing numbers believe the tiny house church, also called a simple church or an organic church, might be the mightier transformer of Christian lives. A recliner becomes a pulpit. A sofa and some armchairs serve as pews… The key element is that the group is small enough for everyone to participate fully and to connect intimately. In this, the new followers believe, they are like the earliest Christians, who also met in small groups in homes.

See through a brand to get to the man Jesus

Go to the Golden Gates! Not the Arches.

To many Christians these days, size indeed does not matter. And egos are still in check. People no longer want to sit in a cozy chair and hear about Jesus. They want to get involved in a group and experience Jesus!

They aren’t interested in “Mr. Megachurch’s Ego Boost Tower of Babel.” They believe they have as much right into the Holy of Holies as the guy with the stained collar does. So why not demand it, or better yet, change your surroundings to demand it? Many already are, but why now?

Religion surveyors, theologians and other experts say millions of American adults are experimenting with new forms of spiritual communities. Many are abandoning traditional church because, among many reasons, the Americanized church has become, for them, too corporate and consumeristic.

Odd, isn’t it?! America sits through church on Sundays minding their watch religiously. And why? To get to Luby’s.

Sunday is not about an embrace; it’s about a brand. Worshiping God is not about the music carrying you into heaven; it’s having a concert with eardrum splitting decibels so loud, you can shout to heaven.

There are ATMs in churches. Starbucks in churches. Merry go rounds in churches. And I get it, so spare the rhetoric of “we need to attract the lost before we bring them to Jesus.” Yes, but you are allowing the church to do all the work.

Get that? “WE bring them to Jesus.” Not the church, not the church’s accutrements, not the megachurch pastor’s whimsical way with ministering the Gospel. All that is fluff. It is about you getting off your blessed assurance and making the invite.

Perhaps that invite would be easier to someone’s living room than a nouveau riche ‘Upper Room’? Who knows?

“It’s kind of seen as an alternative or radical kind or approach,” [Reggie McNeal, church consultant] said. “An increasing number of people are saying that they don’t want to go to (any) church so there better be a way for church to just be where people already are.”

By and large, folk are tired of being fake and wearing a mask. They already do it to work, around “Friends” and even at home. Let us begin to be real at church and if you can’t, perhaps you should consider finding another place to worship.

Only understand this: There is no perfect church, only a perfect Jesus. Serve wherever. Worship whenever. Pray however. But, for the love of God, if you can’t do any of that in the privacy of your own home, church is nothing but lip service.

Spare the Carmex, folks and get real with Jesus!


Make no mistake about this: You can never make a fool out of God. Whatever you plant is what you’ll harvest. (Galatians 6:7 GWV)

Ah. If only folk believed this verse, there wouldn’t be such a surprise when Jesus comes back. And then I read about what ABC’s Nightline just covered about atheists and their ‘de-baptism’ ceremonies, and then I think some folk will never get it.

Wielding a blow-dryer, a leading atheist conducted a mass “de-baptism” of fellow non-believers and symbolically dried up the offending waters that were sprinkled on their foreheads as young children… One of atheism’s premier provocateurs, Edwin Kagin, faced the crowd and raised high a hairdryer labeled “Reason and Truth.”

Atheists better watch how close that hair dryer gets. They could get burned.


Stories like this make want to take a paddle to the behind of these dolts called “The Board of Education” and teach them a thing or two.

Are you kidding me?! A hair dryer? As if to evaporate the dire waters that were sprinkled upon their nubile foreheads decades ago.

Yeah, the water is gone by now genius, but whatever makes you happy. And while we are on that topic, what about God makes you so unhappy?

Is it the age-old question about suffering and pain? You want an honest answer from a blood-baptized child of God? I don’t know.

That said, even if God is not real and I have been believing a hoax (and I’m not), my life has still be full of more joy just thinking I am going to heaven than these miserable fops with a case of the giggles because they are mocking God.

Kagin, who is American Atheists’ national legal director, firmly believes that regardless of one’s religious beliefs, each person has the right to say or do what he or she wants, provided it is within the law. In the past, he has reportedly called out parents who subject their children to strict fundamentalist religious education, referring to it as child abuse.

Everyone's a comedian until the trumpet sounds

Some folk REALLY believe this should be the case

He’s right in some circumstances. There are Christian parents out there who literally beat the “love of God” into their children. There are “Christians” who are some of the lowest scum walking the face of the earth.

And I am fairly certain the number one reason anyone – like the Major Domo of the Dryer here – is an atheist is because they were scorched by a foul-mouthed, evil-spirited “Child of God.”

That’s unfortunate and very sad, but it still gives them no right to mock God. Although his amazing spirit of grace and mercy is understanding as to why they do it, make no mistake… well, you read that already.

All true science and history, if rightly understood, support the fact of God. This evidence is so strong that, as the Bible says:

“The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God” (Psalm 14:1).

If you read the rest of insightful article (and you should), you will learn two irrefutable facts:

  1. There are some intensely hurting and bitter people out there that need to perchance REAL Christians and learn about God’s love
  2. This “fool” is off his rocker.

“Come forward now and receive the spirit of hot air that taketh away the stigma and taketh away the remnants of the stain of baptismal water,” Kagin shouts.

And speaking of hot air, Atheists continue to bash, maul and avoid any Christian who attempts to discuss the reality of Christ. I understand they think that’s an oxymoron, but that’s solely because they can get around the “problem of pain,” as C.S. Lewis once called it.

Who can blame them?! It baffles me sometimes, and I love Jesus… and have been burned oh so badly by so-called, mealy mouthed Christians (I could hyperlink to them too).What I do know is this:

Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good. (Romans 8:26-28 MSG)

Crap happens, but I can either blame God or presume if there’s a God in this world… there’s also a devil with an equal amount of passion, power and persistence to make my life a living hell.

I have experienced tragedy and joy, pain and pleasure. Despite it all, I don’t need a hair dryer to express my hurt. I found a real person to talk to about Jesus Christ and then got my life straight with the Lord. And despite this cockamamie story that ABC dedicated quality air time to broadcast, you can do the same thing.

A real Christian will listen. And if you can’t seem to find one, call on the Lord… he always answers.

But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a tree. Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. (Acts 5:29 – 31 NKJV).

A cross or a tree, Jesus still died for our sins

Imagine worship without this picture in mind? Me neither.

Rappers, athletes, entertainers and Christians alike adorn themselves in bedazzled crosses or even a blinging crucifix to show how upstanding with the Lord they really are. Why? That’s the universal symbol of where Jesus gave his life for us.

Yet, thanks to this story from CNN and AOL News, we read one Swedish theologian who believes that’s not the case and perhaps the aforementioned verse in Acts is closer to the truth of Jesus’ crucifixion.

The Gospels do not say Jesus was crucified, Gunnar Samuelsson says. In fact, he argues, in the original Greek, the ancient texts reveal only that Jesus carried “some kind of torture or execution device” to a hill where “he was suspended” and died, says Samuelsson, who is an evangelical pastor as well as a New Testament scholar.

What the what?

First, I doubt dude was just doing an exegesis on the temperament of Christ, when perchance he tripped and slid his pen over to the crucifixion. No, he set out to do this and knew he would get the 10-inch headline before we had a chance to refute this hullabaloo.

So, congrats?

Anywhoo, it begs an interesting thought… although based in a wheelbarrow of bunk. Why does Paul write that in Acts? “Hanging on a tree.” I have read that verse many times and just considered it a synonym to two trees in the form of a cross. Didn’t you?

“When the Gospels refer to the death of Jesus, they just say that he was forced to carry a “stauros” out to Calvary,” he told AOL News. Many scholars have interpreted that ancient Greek noun as meaning “cross,” and the verb derived from it, “anastauroun,” as implying crucifixion.

“‘Stauros’ is actually used to describe a lot of different poles and execution devices,” he says. “So the device described in the Gospels could have been a cross, but it could also have been a spiked pole, or a tree trunk, or something entirely different.” In turn, “anastauroun” was used to signify everything from the act of “raising hands to suspending a musical instrument.”

Yeah, can’t you see every crucifixion scene in Hollywood depicting the Christ hung on a saxophone? Dimwit, of course that’s not what this instance means. Listen, crucifixion was different in different lands, nonetheless it was the death du jour for the Roman Empire. In fact, Caesar is said to line the main streets with crucified criminals … on crosses … to show the rest of the country, “Screw with Rome and do so at your peril.”

Roman crosses

Whatever the shape, a cross is all he needed.

Crosses are mainly Ts, for the Greek letter Tau. Legs had to held together and arms had to be spread apart to display surrender, helplessness and also eliminate any opportunity for preventing asphyxiation, because all that weight will certainly choke you if the pain doesn’t first.

For me, the moral of this story is this: Who cares. This should do nothing but galvanize our faith.

Jesus’ gift to us should not be relegated to a T, X or any other letter of the alphabet. Let jewelers and people who adorn the Vatican worry about that.

This guy may or may not have tried to undermine Christianity. I doubt it, but he did know this research would get his name on the theological map. Again, kudos Magellan.

Regardless of the research (and it is impressive), the end of the story is still the same.

Whether Jesus was hung on a high Tau with just “INRI” inscribed at the top, the regaled low Tau as seen in Catholic churches everywhere or even on a tree with branches flailing in either direction, the fact is irrefutable – he died, rose again and lives forevermore awaiting a triumphant return.

And for that, I’ll still wear my Christian jewelry, worship at the feet of Jesus and envision him there for me… on a cross, an X or a huge sequoia. Makes no difference to me. I’m still saved as a result.

So, what are you doing in the year 2050? Plans on playing with your grandkids? Enjoying the twilight years? Appreciating the first Siamese twins as president… s?

Meh? If you said, “Raptured”, you would be right on according to a latest Pew Research poll. As the Daily Telegraph (UK) scribed, it seems more than 40 percent of Americans believe we are outta’ here by 2050.

Yours Truly in 2050... on my lunch break.

Also included in this mid-century pontification poll is:

  • 72 percent believe the world will experience a major energy crisis
  • 71 percent believe cancer will be cured by 2050
  • 89 percent believe a woman will be elected US president by 2050
  • 63 percent anticipate the demise of paper money
  • 61 percent say almost no one will send letters by 2050
  • 56 percent think the U.S. economy will be stronger
  • And 41 percent say Jesus Christ will return within the next 40 years

What’s funny is Gallup did this same poll around the turn last millennium and many folk thought we wouldn’t live to see Leif Erikson discover America. No, really.

Anywhoo… what does this poll really say? Are people viewing world events and the local news as (dare I say) “Writing on the Wall” or is this a bunch of folk seriously jonesin’ for the rapture?

Me? I think it’s a little of both.

That poll is a microcosm of why this blog was created in the first place. Oh sure, I wax snarky about current event and will put a fraudulent televangelist on notice faster than the IRS on the prowl for some cash, but it’s a sick world out there… and most blame God (or get God blamed) for it all.

Why? Because they are looking for the madness to stop and that’s when they decide to give God a chance.

Take a lesson from the fig tree. From the moment you notice its buds form, the merest hint of green, you know summer’s just around the corner. So it is with you: When you see all these things, you’ll know he’s at the door. Don’t take this lightly. I’m not just saying this for some future generation, but for all of you. This age continues until all these things take place. Sky and earth will wear out; my words won’t wear out. But the exact day and hour? No one knows that, not even heaven’s angels, not even the Son. Only the Father knows. (Matthew 24:32-36 MSG)

In other words, folk need to give God a chance… just a chance right now. 2050 could be here tomorrow. Where will you be? If you don’t know, you can know.

Take two seconds to ask Jesus in your heart and accept you as his child. Do that, and we will party like it’s 2050. And oh, what a shindig that’ll be.

Back in 2008, when the marketing machine for the apocalyptic flop, “2012” was in full swing, people were seriously considering the Mayan calendar to be more trustworthy than a Farmer’s Almanac.

Folk circled December 12, 2012 on their calendars as “The End” and planned their early Christmas shopping accordingly.

We spray painted story-after-story on the Wall about it too because of the near-phobic concern some dunderheads began festering in a deified puppy-iguana-really ugly dude named Quetzalcoatl. His “Age of Transition” was nigh upon us, only three years early.

As we know, we are still alive, the Mayans are still yet holding on for three more years and that movie blew. Much.

There will no movie rights for this tool.

And now I understand why… because the world was never meant to end in 2012. It’s 2011, according to this lovely biblical scholar quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle.

[Harold] Camping, 88, has scrutinized the Bible for almost 70 years and says he has developed a mathematical system to interpret prophecies hidden within the Good Book. One night a few years ago, Camping, a civil engineer by trade, crunched the numbers and was stunned at what he’d found: The world will end May 21, 2011.

“Crunched the numbers”?!

Dude, the Bible isn’t the IRS tax code. You can’t take your tattered KJV66 to H&R Block and stress the need for a rapid refund.

Never mind the fact he’s an octogenarian who has his own twisted Da Vinci Code. Ignore the fact he has supposedly been “scruntizing” the Bible for seven decades. And I suppose we can set aside one verse in canon he probably overlooked:

But of that [exact] day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father (Matthew 24:36 AMP).

Why? Because this guy has a formula rooted in numerology (and probably medical marijuana) that would make Ph.Ds in Physics blush:

The number 5, Camping concluded, equals “atonement.” Ten is “completeness.” Seventeen means “heaven.” Camping patiently explained how he reached his conclusion for May 21, 2011.

“Christ hung on the cross April 1, 33 A.D.,” he began. “Now go to April 1 of 2011 A.D., and that’s 1,978 years.”

Camping then multiplied 1,978 by 365.2422 days – the number of days in each solar year, not to be confused with a calendar year.

Next, Camping noted that April 1 to May 21 encompasses 51 days. Add 51 to the sum of previous multiplication total, and it equals 722,500.

Camping realized that (5 x 10 x 17) x (5 x 10 x 17) = 722,500.

Or put into words: (Atonement x Completeness x Heaven), squared.

“Five times 10 times 17 is telling you a story,” Camping said. “It’s the story from the time Christ made payment for your sins until you’re completely saved.

Yeah, because Jesus just couldn’t his plan for global destruction through to this guy in algebraic equations on a wet nap.