The Eternal Security of the Believer


The Security of the Believer

Wayno Guerrini
August 27, 2015

I. Introduction

One of the most essential doctrines of the faith, is the security of the believer. Are we eternally secure in our salvation? Can we lose are salvation? Is “once saved always saved even biblical?” Tough questions to answer.

The Bible assures the Believer of the security of their salvation. Let’s look at some of the scriptures and remind us of the rich heritage we share.

II. The main argument against Eternal Salvation: Hebrews 5:9

“And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;” (Hebrew 5:9 KJV)

That looks like there is a condition put on eternal salvation (aionos soteria in Greek), the condition of obedience. Having been raised as a Christian in a denomination that did NOT believe in the security of the believer, I wrestled with this scripture for over 20 years.. It wasn’t until I had taken a year of Greek in college, that I was able to render my own translation of this passage.

You really have to resort to the Greek here. hupakouo is translated obey. A better translation is listen intently:

Hupa in Greek, means under. Hupakouo means to listen attentively, as under someone in authority.

The verse then is perhaps better translated:

Hebrews 5:9 NIV “And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;”

Or my translation: Having been made perfect (teleiothesis), he became (past tense) the source (aitios) of eternal (aionois) salvation (soteria) to all who attentively listen to him.”

Changes the meaning. There is NO condition put upon Eternal Salvation, is there?

How does that mesh with other scriptures?

John 10:27 says: My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me (NIV)

Hmm. Our old familiar akouo. We get our word acoustics from this word. LISTEN. We listen attentively for the shepherd’s voice.

The only condition placed upon salvation that we can find is in Ephesians 2:8-10

“ For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (The faith to believe, is a free gift.) We can’t earn it. We can’t change it. It’s totally, and completely a work of God. Nothing we can do can add or subtract from our salvation. (Eph 2:8-10 NIV)

III. A bit further – Evidences of Salvation (From Pastor Bob Beeman’s Intense Studies Course, Redondo Beach, Ca. Circa 1991)

The indwelling Spirit. “When you are saved, the Holy Spirit moves in and makes His home in your life.” (Romans 8:9).

The Holy Spirit gives evidence of Salvation: Romans 8:16 “The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” (NIV)

Desire to Please God: A willingness to follow God’s Word and do his commands.

3 We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. 4 Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, love for God[a] is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did. (1 john 2:3-6 NIV)

The desire to obey through Christ, the proof of salvation is obedience. John 14:15 tells us simply: “If you love me, keep my commands.” (NIV)

Discipline – The dreaded “D” word

And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,
“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”[a]
7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:5-11)

“A lack of God’s disciplining hand in the lives of those who claim to be saved, yet persist to live in sin, should be seen as an indicator that he has most assuredly NOT been saved!” (Pastor Bob Beeman)

God calls us to be fruit inspectors. Remember that fruit takes time to produce, and to grow.

22-23 But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. (Galatians 5:22-23 The Message)

More familiarly: 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. (Galatians 5:22-26 NIV)

Affection for God’s people. “All who are saved below to God’s family. It’s natural that those who belong to the same family, love one another. (Pastor Bob Beeman)

14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. (1 John 3:14 NIV)

“Notice how this love became evident in the life of the jailer at Philippi after he was converted.” (Pastor Bob Beeman)

At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptised. 34 The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household. (Acts 16:33-34 NIV)

IV. Once saved, always saved? (Or the Perseverance of the Saints)

Bible exegesis teaches, that we often use easy-to-understand passages, to cultivate the meaning of hard-to-understand passages. Such is the case with the Hebrews 5:9 passage.

Let’s look at John 3:16-18 (NIV)

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. (John 3:16-18 NIV)

Eternal Salvation does NOT depend on anything man does. I have to power to rescind.. To declare my trust in Christ alone, as null and void. That doesn’t sound like Eternal Salvation to me.

Ephesians 1:13-14 tells us:

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory. (NIV)

The Holy Spirit that indwells every believer, is the deposit – the arrhabon (Earnest Money which purchases a pledge or down-payment that the full amount will subsequently be paid. (Strong’s concordance) guaranteeing our inheritance.

It is completely a work of God, as Ephesians tells us. Our salvation rest firmly on what the word of God says.

Once saved, always saved? John 6:29 answers the question:

Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” (John 6:29 NIV)

How about this: 2 Cor 4:16-18

So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever. (2 Cor 4:16-18 The Message)

Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life. (John 5:24 NIV)


Some people believe, only to get their grace ticket to Heaven punched. The feel they can live and do anything they want. It’s grace.

So what do we do? Keep on sinning so God can keep on forgiving? I should hope not! If we’ve left the country where sin is sovereign, how can we still live in our old house there? Or didn’t you realize we packed up and left there for good? That is what happened in baptism. When we went under the water, we left the old country of sin behind; when we came up out of the water, we entered into the new country of grace—a new life in a new land!

3-5 That’s what baptism into the life of Jesus means. When we are lowered into the water, it is like the burial of Jesus; when we are raised up out of the water, it is like the resurrection of Jesus. Each of us is raised into a light-filled world by our Father so that we can see where we’re going in our new grace-sovereign country.

6-11 Could it be any clearer? Our old way of life was nailed to the cross with Christ, a decisive end to that sin-miserable life—no longer at sin’s every beck and call! What we believe is this: If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection. (Rom 6:3-11 The Message)

Gal 2:19-21 What actually took place is this: I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a “law man” so that I could be God’s man. Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that. (The Message)

Chuck Swindoll in “The Grace Awakening” said it best:

Journey down the path to freedom

The word grace is a short, simple word. But understanding the biblical depth and meaning of grace can take a lifetime of study and application. It’s almost a shame that a word describing suppleness of movement or a short, quick prayer before a meal is the same word we use to describe God’s unfathomable love for sinners. Nevertheless, it is grace that moves Him to offer us the free gift of salvation and forgiveness.

Grace is what compelled the apostle Paul to write of a mystery never understood before (1 Corinthians 2:7–13). Grace is also what allows us to relax into another’s accepting embrace as he or she gives us the freedom to discover our unique journey laid out by God. So relax as we journey together down the path toward freedom and the wonderment of the surpassing riches of God’s grace!
“Grace is NOT a license to sin. Grace is the power to live free from the bondage of sin.”

The King James said it best. I do NOT frustrate the grace of God. Stop that! We’re to live lives completely dedicated to the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. Do our lives reflect His grace, or do we have one foot in the Bible, and the other on a banana peel in the world? STOP.

Is our life a reflection of Jesus, and the grace given to us, or does it have the same consistency of the world.

“God requires us to live in the world. But He inoculates us from its value system.” (Larry O. Richards)

Are you inoculated, or do you continue frustrating God’s grace.

“God’s choice is to let man choose there own eternal destiny, because the invitation is given to all.” (Larry O. Richards)

What’s your individual choice, on where you will spend eternity?

Need more proof? Pastor Bob Beeman’s notes on Eternal Security.

Eulogy for Louis (Lou) Guerrini


Louis Guerrini (February 27, 1926 – November 2, 2015)

Born in Brooklyn, New York, on February 27, 1926 to Italian immigrant parents, he was the only child of Ida and Albert. He grew up in the Big Apple where he went to public school. Speaking nothing but Italian until the age of 7, he learned English along with the rest of the kids from the borough.

Growing up during the Depression, his father, a veteran of World War I, succumbed from injuries he sustained during the war. He went to live with his Uncle Jovocino in New Jersey. He grew up, like his future bride, on a farm. Yearning for adventure, he joined the U. S. Navy in 1944. He was a Veteran of both World War II and Korea, and his unit received citations for both the Bronze Star and Silver Star. He was also active in the Fleet Reserve. During his career with the Navy, he befriended George.

George later introduced him to his sister, Angelina. They were married in 1949 in Syracuse, New York. Moving around a lot with Navy was no fun. But while in Virginia, the keel was laid for their first child: a son.

When Disneyland opened on Sunday, July 17, 1955, he was one of the first people in line. Never mind the 101F/39C temp! No one had told him it was only open to celebrities on that day, (it was open to the general public the NEXT Day) but he can honestly say, he was at Disneyland, (even if it was only the parking lot,) Opening Day!

He would later be stationed in San Diego, California where they bought a home, and moved in (with cat, pregnant wife and son) on Christmas Eve Day, 1955. First one to move onto the block. A few months later, their daughter Cynthia arrived.

When he was at home, he enjoyed being with his family. He took them to see South Pacific at the Rancho Drive Inn, in 1958. One of the few times when we we’re all able to get together.

During his career in the Navy as an Aviation Electrician Chief, his last cruise aboard the Aircraft Carrier, U.S.S. Kearsarge (CVS 33), he was the lead Chief in charge of the Electrical Helicopter maintenance, for the recovery of the last of Nasa’s Mercury Missions: Gordon Cooper’s Faith 7.

He loved holidays. But especially Halloween. He created the first talking pumpkin, affectionately called: Mr. Pumpkin. Blinking lights that flickered as he talked, and a speaker at the feet. Scared the little kids. But they ALL got a treat!

After retirement from the Navy, he ran as the city of National City’s City Treasurer against Ida Mae Kerr, in the 1960‘s. 1800 votes to the incumbent’s 2200. Not bad for a rookie politician, but a master of budgeting. He wasn’t known as nickel nose for nothing!

In between jobs, he took a position as a janitor in one of the schools in the area, to support his family. His Father-in-Law was ill, so his wife journeyed back to New York. He was left in-charge of the house. Let’s just say, cooking wasn’t his forté. But they didn’t starve. He also managed to break a leg (literally) at work, while she was away. He was never put in charge of the house a second time.

One of the families’ fondest memories, is gathering around the old Black & White Raytheon Television set, and sitting down to watch perhaps the greatest movie of all time: “The Wizard of Oz.” It’s wholesome message, is not lost in today’s world.

Returning to work at North Island (Coronado, California) as a Civil Servant, he repaired Avionics for the Navy.

They had 11 people living under one roof at the same time. And only ONE bathroom. Things did get tense sometimes. But they shared fond memories of lining up to use the bathroom.

But secretly, It was all about the food! Oh the stories. Friends would gather for Pasta Fagioli, Spaghetti, or whatever Ma, George, or Grandma was cooking that day (even if it was Hot Dogs, Sauerkraut, and Pork and Beans (in ONE pot!)) Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, Easter. Any special occasion, would find lots of friends and neighbours coming and going, and the ever present pot of coffee always brewing.

His favourite food on earth however, was Chocolate. In any shape. Any form. Any size. We all had bunny ears on Easter, that had been “tested.” He shared from his secret stash, but only if you were good!He enjoyed taking his family on picnics on a Sunday afternoon, to the beautiful Balboa Park, near the famous San Diego Zoo. They would feast on Italian goodies. Prosciutto, Copocollo, Salami, Mortadella and Provolone sandwiches, olives, and fresh-baked Italian bread. Ahh. La Vita Dolce.

In 1968, he took his family on a whirlwind vacation across the United States. For 6 very long, very hot, and very humid weeks. They traveled in the back of a camper, from California to Arizona, where his wife proclaimed herself the Desert Queen. (Not to be confused with Dairy Queen!) They finally managed to go across Texas, and onto Florida to visit friends and family. Then onto New Jersey, and New York to visit all of the relatives. They would travel through over one half of the states in the Union when it was done.

In 1969, an accident that would drastically change his life occurred. While remodeling his daughter’s playhouse into a work shed, he cut off his left index finger. He was then called “9 Finger.” Everyone thought he was Mafioso, but of course, that was part of the mystique. Turning tragedy into something laughable.

He returned to school, and got his High School Diploma in 1970, just 4 days ahead of his son.

They got a dog, a toy French Poodle, whom he named P.i.t.a. (Pain in the Ass). He loved that dog. He was a great companion for the family. Finally retirement Day in 1981. He and his wife, decided that RV life was for them. So they loaded up and truck, and off they went!

In 1985, he became a Grandpa, with the birth of his Granddaughter, Julianne. They adopted another daughter, Karen, who became an integral part of the family.

They liked RV Life, and eventually sold their house in National City, California to full time it. They became S.K.P. members, and eventually settled down in Benson, Arizona. La Vita pensionato.

He and his wife sojourned all over the world: Italy, Greece, England, Nova Scotia, Yellowstone, and Ely, Nevada. He and his wife would spend summers camp hosting there and working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s, Forestry Service.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Ann, who live in Benson, Arizona. His son Wayne, who live’s in Tucson, Arizona. Daughter Cynthia Grand Daughter Julianne, and great Grand Daughter Ri, who live in San Antonio, Texas. Life now complete.

Louis Albert Guerrini Father, Husband….Dad.

The Silent Witness of the Christmas Star


The Silent Witness of the Christmas Star

When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,

what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them? (Psalm 8:3-4 NIV)

Many of us will glance at the Heavens above, and see the vast expanse of the universe for a brief moment. One day, God wrote a message of love in the stars.  “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” (Matt 2:2 NIV)

The Creator of the universe used his finger to announce to a weary and sin soaked world, that He has extended His mercy to mankind.

God’s offer of reconciliation is announced each and every day, by the presence of the stars and the moon. We don’t have to wait for a special one-of-a-kind event to appear in the Heavens. We can claim God’s offer: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16 NIV)

Many see the little Lord Jesus in the manger, at Christmas time, and never give a second thought.

Sharpen your gaze into eternity: “For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!” (Romans 5:10 NIV)

The Moon and the Stars, bear a silent witness of God’s mercy which is extended to all, each and every day. The true message of Christmas is reconciliation with the Creator of the universe.

A reply to November Islam’s letter of hate


As Christians, our mission is always reconciliation of man with God.

Col 1:20 tells us: “and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (NIV)

Christ tells us in Matt 5:44 “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” (NIV)

An example of this can be found in the parable of of the Good Samaritan. (Luke 10:25-37). A little historical background is in order. The Jews hated the Samaritans, and vice versa. A Priest and a Levite happen upon the man, and miss the opportunity. Their priority was to get home.

The Samaritan on the other hand, saw opportunity. He in-convenienced himself, and became involved in this man’s life, even though they were enemies.

Proverbs tells us: “In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the LORD will reward you.” (Proverbs 25:22 NIV)

Today is Reformation Sunday. Sola fide. In faith alone. Because of Christ’s atoning sacrifice of Himself on Calvary’s Cross, I am restored to a right relationship with God.

I choose to live my life by faith, and not by sight. (2 Cor 5:7)



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> November ISLAM 2015
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> Dear Christian leader,
> We are asking Christian leaders across America and around the world to
> teach the truth about Sharia law during the month of November and
> offer Christ as the only way to defeat Islamic tyranny (see
> and
> If you decide not to participate, we would like to hear from you in
> hopes that we can convince you to change your mind. But if you already
> know the truth that Islamic tyranny is currently the greatest threat
> to the Church and freedom, you need not inform us of your
> participation – unless our assistance is needed or you wish to go the
> second mile in supporting November ISLAM. Either way, we trust that
> God will cause you to do your part of our mission…and invite other
> Christians to join the network.
> Thank you for overcoming the fear and political correctness linked to
> Islam and Sharia law. Please pray for our awareness month and we shall
> pray for you and your outreach.
> Blessings.
> Paul Christian
> A Representative of the Guardian Faith
> 1-310-801-9247
> P.S. – We are also asking Christian leaders to encourage their members
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The Day the Universe Changed — A perspective on the Supreme Court’s on Gay Marriage


Relatively few of us, are used to becoming eyewitnesses to history. Many watched with reverent awe, as history unfolded on the day of the JFK assassination. We can remember precisely where we were when Man first landed on the Moon. Or the sombre days of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Regardless of age, most people in the world were eyewitnesses as the events unfolded, and become part of the collective: American Experience.

That experience reverberated today, when we as a nation, witnessed the Supreme Court of the United States, declare same-sex marriage as the law of the land. This is a day, not unlike previous events that sharpened our character and resolve. We inextricably witnessed a paradigm shift in the nature of who we are as a society, and a nation.

The decision today, underscores how far this nation has fast tracked from God’s Grace and tender mercies.

Chief John Roberts dissent on Gay Marriage voiced these concerns, which should be a clarion call to all (excerpted):

“If you are among the many Americans — of whatever sexual orientation — who favor expanding same-sex marriage, by all means celebrate today’s decision. Celebrate the achievement of a desired goal. Celebrate the opportunity for a new expression of commitment to a partner. Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.”

“People of faith can take no comfort in the treatment they receive from the majority today.”

“The majority graciously suggests that religious believers may continue to “advocate” and “teach” their views of marriage. The First Amendment guarantees, however, the freedom to “exercise” religion. Ominously, that is not a word the majority uses. Hard questions arise when people of faith exercise religion in ways that may be seen to conflict with the new right to same-sex marriage—when, for example, a religious college provides married student housing only to opposite-sex married couples, or a religious adoption agency declines to place children with same-sex married couples… Unfortunately, people of faith can take no comfort in the treatment they receive from the majority today.” – Chief Justice John Roberts

Scotus declared: Gay marriage is now the law of the land.

For Christians, this is a reminder that we need to be firmly rooted in God’s word, each and every day. Who am I to declare what God has firmly established as sin, now socially acceptable?

The body of Christ MUST come together and embrace sound teaching:

For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. (2 Timothy 4:3 NIV)

Do not enter the apostasy of today’s decision.

My dear friends, don’t let public opinion influence how you live out our glorious, Christ-originated faith. (James 2:1 The Message)

The Disciples’ Prayer — a look at Matthew 6:9-13


The Discples’ Prayer (Matt 6:9-13)

Wayno Guerrini

Men’s Meeting:  June 22, 2015

Perhaps one of the most impossible tasks I have ever been asked to do, is to teach on the subject of the Disciples’ Prayer found in Matthew 6:9-13, in one lesson. One lifetime would be insufficient to do justice to this passage. It has been recited for centuries. Today it seems like meaningless babble against the backdrop and the incongruities of our age. This prayer is not a talisman. It is NOT a good luck charm. It is a model prayer.

Throughout this study unless otherwise noted, I will use the New International (NIV) version of the Bible. You may prefer another translation or paraphrase.

As Wiersbe, Warren W. (1989). The Bible Exposition Commentary. Colorado Springs, Co.: David C. Cook Publishing. Said: “It is worth noting that there are no singular Pronouns in this prayer; they are all plural. It begins with “OUR Father.” When we pray, we must remember that we are part of God’s worldwide family of believers.”

To misquote Sister Sledge (“We are Family”) . I got all my [brothers and] sisters with me.” We don’t think of ourselves as family. God designed interdependence into faith. Do you know of any “Lone Ranger Christians?” They probably aren’t walking in faith any more. Interdependence, a yearning to not be alone, is built into the very essence of mankind. What was the first thing that was pronounced as “not good” in the Bible? We don’t have to turn far. Genesis 2:18 provides the answer: “The Lord God said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” We were built for relationships. The prayer begins: “Our Father in Heaven.”

Hallowed be your name. Hallowed. We might think of Lincoln’s “hallow[ed] ground” from his Gettysburg Address.. Hallow is NOT the first part of Halloween! Hagiastheto in Greek. Holy. Sacred. Set Apart. Revered. God’s name is set apart. It is not something to be taken glibly. It is a name we speak with our lips. James tells us: With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth! (James 3:10 The Message). Our mouths communicate what is in the heart. Do you realise that our hands, our very hands, have handled “The Words of Life.” Our hearts, our minds, our thoughts, our actions, our speech, our lives ought to reflect a reverence for God’s holiness. God tells us in Hebrews: without holiness no one will see the Lord. (Hebrews 12:14b NIV) Our ambition should be to pursue holiness. Not just mumble a prayer we have said a thousand times. We should stand in awe, that we are part of God’s family. We get to speak His name. We get to say: “Abba. Father.” (Mark 14:36)

Your kingdom come: As simple as it is, complex. By saying this, we acknowledge that we are subject to the rule of a King. The Kingdom of God, is NOT a Democracy. There are no Democrats or Republicans. Get over it! We eagerly anticipate the time when God will establish His rule and dominion over the new heaven and a new earth. (Rev 21:1) God makes the rules. Somewhere in Richards, Larry O. (1990). The 365 Day Devotional. Wheaton, Il.: Victor Books, he quotes someone as saying: “A Christian’s eyes gaze deep into eternity. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV).  Our focus is not here. Our rewards are not on this rotating ball of boredom. Our focus is not earth bound. It must be shaped by a deep gaze into eternity. God’s kingdom will surely come. The poignant question is: are we prepared? Are we prepared today, to have God’s kingdom enter our lives, transform our hearts, and begin to share His love, mercy and compassion with others? Your kingdom come means we as a church, must by nature, be evangelical. We must extend the invitation God’s living word gives, to ALL.

Your will be done: Did you notice something in this prayer. There is no me-ism in in this model prayer. We are not here to “do our own thing.” We are here to glorify God in all that we do. God’s will. Not mine. God must have the singular priority in our life. There is no room here for self-sufficiency. We are subjects of the King. We take our orders from Him.

On earth as it is in Heaven: as above, so below (Matt 6:10 The Message). We affirm God’s authority over the earth, as His home in Heaven. There should be no difference what we do here on earth, since we are subjects of a King not of this world. As Richards, Larry O. (1990). The 365 Day Devotional. Wheaton, Il.: Victor Books,  aptly put it: “God does not want us to isolate ourselves from the people of this world. He simply wants to inoculate us against its values.” Our goal is Heaven. That is where our hearts, our treasure and where our King resides. Be a reflection of God’s mercy and compassion to other people. We are the only Gospel someone may experience. We MUST stand out amidst the growing apostasy of this world, and be set apart.

Give us today our daily bread: As the song from Godspell says: “Day by day Oh Dear Lord. Three things I pray. To see thee more clearly . Love thee more dearly Follow thee more nearly Day by day.” Proverbs says it best: “Two things I ask of you, Lord; do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord? Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonour the name of my God.” (Proverbs 30:7-9 NIV). Necessities NOT luxuries. Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,” (Hebrews 13:5 NASB). Sure, I’d like a new car. But you know, my 20 year old Buick works fine. I am content, with what I have. Contentment and delay of gratification, are 2 of the hardest things to learn, not only as a child, but as an adult.

Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. (2 Cor 416 NASB). Our walk is daily. It is not sitting in a pew one hour a week, and listening to the Pastor preach. We are to walk with God, every day. Our dependence is on God alone for our daily needs. God give us day by day, what we need. Nourish not only our bodies, but our souls and our spirit, that we may be quick to act at your command.

‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.’
Forgiveness. It almost implies a work. It doesn’t. It means, that we are to forgive those who sin against us, the very same way that God, has already forgiven us. There is some bad theology going around that says: Forgiven means Forgotten. NOT! (ibid Richards, Larry.) As Chuck Swindoll says: “Forgiveness means God chooses NOT to hold our past against us.” We must do the same. Matt 5:24 (NASB) says: “leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.” For further study: Matthew 18. 1 John 1:9 tells us confidently: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (KJV)”

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. (Matt 6:13 NIV): God does not tempt anyone. 1 Cor 10:13 is very clear: No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. (NIV) This petition is that we that we would not go down the path of temptation. How do we do this? Proverbs 3:5-6 is the answer: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.” (NASB)

I have a friend who struggles with pornography. He said: “I just find myself going into the store to look. I can’t help it. I am weak.” He is right. But sometimes the solution is as simple as finding a new way home so he avoids going near the store. That means extra time and effort on our part. Another important aspect of avoiding temptation, is accountability. Small groups provide a safe environment, so that we can obtain the support, help and prayer that we need.

Right now you are asking, what is accountability? Why, then, criticise your brother’s actions, why try to make him look small? We shall all be judged one day, not by each other’s standards or even our own, but by the standard of Christ. It is written: ‘As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God’. It is to God alone that we have to answer for our actions. (Romans 14:10-12 JB Phillips)

I like this from Chuck Swindoll on accountability:

What do we mean by accountability? In the simplest terms, it is answering the hard questions. Accountability includes opening one’s life to a few carefully selected, trusted, loyal confidants who speak the truth—who have the right to examine, to question, to appraise, and to give counsel.

People who are accountable usually have four qualities:

Vulnerability—capable of being wounded, shown to be wrong, even admitting it before being confronted.

–a willingness to learn, being quick to hear and respond to reproof, being open to counsel.

—accessible, touchable, able to be interrupted.

Honesty—committed to the truth regardless of how much it hurts, a willingness to admit the truth no matter how difficult or humiliating the admission may be. Hating all that is phony or false.

That’s a tough list! As I look back over those four qualities, I am more than ever aware of why accountability is resisted by the majority. Those with fragile egos can’t handle it. And prima donna types won’t tolerate it. They have a greater desire to look good and make a stunning impression than anything else. I mean, “the very idea of someone probing into my life!”

Don’t misunderstand. I’m not suggesting for a moment that accountability gives the general public carte blanche access to any and all areas of one’s private life. If you will glance back a few lines you will notice I referred to “a few carefully selected, trusted, loyal confidants.” They are the ones who have earned the right to come alongside and, when it seems appropriate and necessary, ask the hard questions, to serve in an advisory capacity, bringing perspective and wisdom where such may be lacking.

In our society, where privacy is a reward of promotion and a life of virtual secrecy is the prerogative of most leaders, a lack of accountability is considered the norm. This is true despite the fact that unaccountability is both unwise and unbiblical, not to mention downright perilous!

Today we need others to hold us accountable. Sometimes an objective opinion will reveal a blind spot. Sometimes we may simply need a sounding board to help keep us on target. Just remember—not one of us is an island. We need one another.

For Yours is the kingdom and the power the the glory forever. Amen. (NASB)

John H. Sammis in 1887 said it best:

Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
But our toil He doth richly repay;
Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
But is blessed if we trust and obey.

But we never can prove the delights of His love
until all on the alter we lay;
For the favour he shows, for the joy he bestows,
Are for them who trust and obey.

This prayer is NOT about me. It is about the Kingdom. It is wilfully submitting to the Lordship of Christ in our live. Perhaps you have not trust Christ as saviour. He will come into your life, if you open the door to your heart. “Look at me. I stand at the door. I knock. If you hear me call and open the door, I’ll come right in and sit down to supper with you. (Rev 3:20 The Message)


Mediation on the Lord’s Prayer

Lord, I cannot say “Our”…
if my religion has no room for other people and their needs.

Lord, I cannot say “Father”…
If I fail to resemble You in the way I live my daily life.

Lord, I cannot say “Who art in Heaven”…
If my attention is focused only on earthly things.

Lord, I cannot say “Hallowed by the name”…
if I who am called by your name am not holy.

Lord, I cannot say “Thy Kingdom come”…
if I fail to acknowledge your sovereignty in my life.

Lord, I cannot say, “On earth as it is in Heaven”…
unless I am truly ready to serve You here and now.

Lord, I cannot say “give use this day our daily bread”…
without doing an honest day’s work, and without considering the needs of those less fortunate.

Lord, I cannot say “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors”…
If I harbour a grudge against my brother or sister.

Lord, I cannot say “Lead us not into temptation”…
If I deliberately choose to remain in a situation where I am likely to be tempted.

Lord, I cannot say “Deliver us from evil”…
If I am not prepared to take a stand against injustice in my society.

Lord, I cannot say “Thine is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory”…
If I do not submit to Christ as King, if I fail to trust You to act in my life, or if in pride, I see my own glory.

Lord, I cannot say “Amen”…
unless I can honestly say, “Come what may this is my prayer.”

Adapted from “Lamplighter,” Speedway Christian Church, Indianapolis, Indiana
Richards, Larry O. (1990). The 365 Day Devotional. Wheaton, Il.: Victor Books, page 648.

Christian Perspective on Bruce Jenner’s sex reassignment


My Response to “Why I Think Caitlyn Jenner is a Hero”

Jenner’s issues are much deeper than gender dysphoria.

He believes the lie, like many with a world milieu.

Self Worth = my performance + other people’s opinions

Problem is, both vary.

I believed the lie for many years. I spent years reshaping my self-esteem, based upon God’s love for me by sending his Son to pay for your sin and my sin. Any sin, short of rejecting the message of the Holy Spirit (you can not separate the Word of God, from the Spirit of God), can be forgiven. Murder? Forgiven. Adultery? Forgiven. Sex re-assignment? Forgiven.

The bigger issue is God’s omniscience (knows everything) and omnipotence (controls everything). Jenner openly declares: “I am master of my soul and body, not you, God.” That my friend, is idolatry. One doesn’t glorify or declare idolatry as acceptable. That is apostasy. None of us are immune.

We are offered 2 choices: condemn or condone? Neither is correct. We offer charity. to whomever God brings into our life.

As we become closer to Christ through prayer in the inner chamber, we begin to see God’s glory. Andrew Murray’s “The Prayer Life” was transformational. (About a 4 hour read.) I was convicted of my prayerlessness between the 2nd and 3rd paragraph.

Choose to be close to God. Make no apologies.

My dear friends, don’t let public opinion influence how you live out our glorious, Christ-originated faith. (James 2:1 The Message)


The Purpose of Prayer

The editor of our monthly newsletter has asked me to write articles on prayer. Here is the first installment. I am limited to 300 words. This is tough!


Many Christians see prayer as a chore. It is ritualised. We say words that have no meaning. They seem to go no further then the ceiling. Our minds are stuck. We cry out to God when it’s convenient, or we’re desperate.

Our prayer life does not have to be this way. Prayer is talking to God. What do we talk about? It was hot. I had a hard day. I need money. I’m lonely. All of these. Isaiah reminds us: “Behold, the LORD’S hand is not so short That it cannot save; Nor is His ear so dull That it cannot hear.” (Isaiah 59:1 NASB)

Let’s get back to the purpose of prayer. There are 2 things to learn. The purpose of prayer is talking and communicating with God. As we begin to be transparent in our prayer life, we discover the same thing about prayer that author C.S. Lewis tell us: “Prayer changes ME!”

How has prayer changed your life? When you pray for someone, a friend perhaps, do you just say: “Lord, please bless so and so.” Prayer requires us to invest a little time in the life of another. Can you pray for someone without using the word bless? You can if you take a moment as our Pastor demonstrates to us in asking: “How can I pray for you today?”

Our focus in prayer is NOT me. It should be on advancing the Kingdom. “Thy will be done.” Not ours. What is your agenda in prayer? Is is to get your needs met, or do we say: “Lord I’m available to you today. Please use me, and grant me your grace and your wisdom, so I can be a reflection of your mercy and compassion to others.”

Remembering May 4, 1970 — Kent State University

Updated May 4, 2015 (45th Anniversary)

The politics of the 1970’s were as politically divisive, as they were polarizing. The protest movements borne of the Vietnam War, would help spark a revolution both on the political and social landscapes. It was part of dinner table discussions. We all sat around the television screen, as the Vietnam war unfolded on TV sets all across the nation. “How could these collage age Americans protest a war, thousands of miles away, while poor kids were being slaughtered?” They were branded by most, as cowards, and decidedly, un-American. “My country right or wrong, is still my country!” was the loud resound of my Father. I was not convinced.

A handful of millennials, grasp the underpinnings that played out in the early years of the 1970’s. We don’t see demonstrations these days, that fundamentally changed the political scenery. I am here to remind a generation of that metamorphosis.

There were always demonstrations regarding the unpopular Vietnam war. In late April, 1970, then President Nixon, desperately searching for an exit strategy, announced the American incursion of the Vietnamese War, into uncharted territory: Cambodia. The North Vietnamese Army (NVA) provided to be a formidable opponent. Many thousands of lives were lost in the span of 2 months.

This is my own story.

I would turn 18 in July of 1970. Before my birthday that year, was high school graduation. Many people waited till after graduation in mid-June to apply for a student deferment from the Draft. I did NOT wait. I applied for a student deferment 6 months prior to my birthday, in January. Because I had taken college level courses between my junior and senior year of high school, I demonstrated to the draft board, my intention on seeking higher education. The draft board took note of that, and I was granted a student deferment. That didn’t mean I was a draft dodger. It merely put off my eligibility for the military induction draft, until I had completed my education. It bought me 3 years.

Just after High School graduation in June, a few weeks later, in July, all student deferments were cancelled. I was okay, because I already had a student deferment. iI you didn’t have one, you would have to report for military service. I come from a very proud military family. My father having served 20 years in the Armed Forces of the United States.

Sandwiched in-between the amazing heroism of Apollo 13, and High School Graduation, was an event like no other. May 4, 1970, 12:22 eastern time. Four Students protesting the war’s incursion into Cambodia, were fatally shot. Civil disobedience wasn’t just something you saw on tv. These were kids my age, gunned down, for speaking and expressing an idea that was unpopular with most of America. Civil Disobedience once again had birth pangs. The Gay Rights movement gained a footing here from the unexpected sacrifice, at Kent State University.

Singers and Songwriters became spokesmen for my generation: Woody Gutheie, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (CSN&Y), The Mamas and the Papas. “Four Dead in Ohio” by CSN&Y is a constant reminder of that turbulent moment in history. The sites and sounds of that day, are like last week.

This was close. This was personal. I was forever transformed. Many from the baby boomer generation, can still recall what they were doing that day. I was in my civics class. Being taught by a student teacher. A rabble rouser. Part of the SDS. (Students for a Democratic Society) One who spoke the truth that day, that I did NOT want to hear, but whose voice beckoned me to listen. To watch. To look. To cry. To finally understand, the true cost of civil disobedience: death at the hands of National Guardsmen. Exonerated from any wrong doing, they had fired 67 rounds in just 13 seconds. Their shots echoed far into the conscious mind for those astute enough, to comprehend. It echoed so deeply into my soul, that I knew I could NOT be a part of any war. I have remained a pacifist from that very day.

I can well understand the protests in Baltimore. The tree of liberty is watered with blood. This time, not soldiers. Innocent civilians whose only crime was not locking a goose step to the edicts expounded by the Nixon administration.

The current administration, led by Mr. Obama, is still clinching to an antiquated pattern of behaviour. Searching for an exit strategy, that doesn’t exist.

As a society we must decry the hypocrisy, and forge anew in our hearts, the purpose and cause of peace, that others so valiantly scarified.

“Warriors may be forged in the fires of battle but heroes are discovered in the most unlikely of places.” (The Light Brigade, Outer Limits)



Originally published, May 4, 2008

Kent State, May 4, 1970

May 4, 1970

Nestled between the amazing heroism of Apollo 13, and High School Graduation, is a little known event: May 4, 1970, 12:22 pm (eastern time).

Other then becoming a Christian, this event would have a significant, long lasting effect, and play a very prominent role in my life.

Exercising First Amendment Rights, the students of Kent State University in Ohio, had gathered to protest the Vietnam War’s incursion into Cambodia.

On that fateful day, Students: Allison Krause, Jeffrey Glen Miller, Sandra Lee Scheuer, and William Knox Schroeder (Kent State) were brutally shot to death by Ohio National Guardsmen. In just 13 seconds, they had fired 67 rounds.

The impact of this incident, coming just six weeks before my high school graduation, changed me utterly and profoundly. As I pondered the realities or war, wrestled with the meaning of life, I came to the realisation that wars solve nothing.

On that day, in that hour, I was transformed into a life of pacifism, by the sacrifice made by these individuals.

I finally understood the messengers of passive-resistance: Ghandi, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

On the 38th Anniversary.

An Interview with Eustacia Cutler

Most anyone who is part of the Autism Community, would recognise the name Dr. Temple Grandin. But would you reckognise the name: Eustacia Cutler?

Some people know immediately. Others have absolutely no clue who this person might be. Eustacia Cutler, is Dr. Temple Grandin’s mother.

What is Autism

Autism is a developmental disorder of the brain. As the brain matures, it becomes neurologically (wired) different then what is found in the Neuro-Typical (non-autistic) general population. Approximately 1 percent of the population (1 in 88) are affected by an Autism Spectrum Disorder.

I had a few moments with Ms. Cutler at a recent Autism conference held in Tucson. A charming woman, with a distinctive Boston accent.

The Politics of Autism

Autism and Politics. Why isn’t the political system doing anything to help?

There is a great deal that we don’t know. That’s why I am working to develop this fund, the Temple Grandin/Eustacia Cutler fund to support and guide all members of the family. I think basically Autism is a family dis-order.

This is one of the reasons politician’s don’t approach this. They want to be kind. But how do they do this? The part of the problem with the government is they are not always sure what is the most helpful thing to do? I am not sure either. They can’t take care of the situation. In the end, the family is going to take care of the situation. The family is the lynch pin.

This also means, school and therapists. But they [politicians] can’t handle the life problems. They can only guide people and teach them to handle problems themselves.

There are not going to be answers. There are only going to be choices.

Changes to how Autism is diagnosed

Controversy surrounds proposed DSM (Diagnostics and Statistics Manual) changes to remove the diagnosis of Aspergers and roll that into Autism Spectrum Disorder. What is your opinion?

I am not in a position to evaluate it. I will watch it. My role is be an ambassador. To explain and listen to the doctors.

Learning difficulties

Temple is a visual learning. As a child, she was almost a “tape recorder.” What role did hearing playing in her learning process?

We have different ways of connecting neurologically. We are all visual learners in my family. It’s not always information that’s appraised. That’s why I talked about the difference between conceptual thinking and categories. How hard she has to work, for the conceptual thinking, which does NOT come to her neurologically.

Autism Speaks

The organisation Autism Speaks. Do they help? Does they hurt?

Interesting question. People think differently. It’s corporate thinking. Of course they have done good. They have raised huge amounts of money. They have put a great deal of it into research. All help is good.

A followup question. On several websites, there are posts that say: “Autismspeaks does NOT speak for me.” Comments?

I have no way to appraise this. I see the tremendous need each of us has to hang on to our identify. The fear that particularly High functioning Apsergers have is losing themselves. Research will change them.

At a conference that Margaret Bowman did (from Mass. General Hospital) in Bakersfield California, a young Neurologist was talking about medications. A man stood up and said: “I am Asperger. Is the point of your research to do away with me?”

The Future

A final question. If you could leave one thought to the future generation about Autism, what would you tell them?

Choices. We change. The capacity to change, I think is an extraordinary gift. The choices change us. We have some sense in our neurology of some spirit in us, to be the person we would like to be. In the choices, clarify it for your child. You make the choices for your child to be fulfilled. I would say that. No, Temple is not cured of her Autism. But she is fulfilled. She is fulfilled as she would like to be fulfilled.

The film Temple Grandin is an excellent biopic of Eustacia Cuter, and Dr. Temple Grandin.