Scarlett Johansson pressured against Israel, stands firm

Scarlett Johansson stepped down from her support of the humanitarian group, Oxford International. Why? Simply because they want her to stop her endorsement deal with SodaStream International Ltd.  The Oxford group feels that any Israeli company operating in the West Bank is impoverishing the people of Palestine. That is hogwash. I am happy to see that Scarlet Johansson understands that supporting SodaStream does not impoverish the people in Palestine, but gives them job opportunities.

Scarlett Johansson refused to succumb to the anti-Semitic forces that see Israel as the bad guys. Cmon. We know better. The same forces that call good evil, and evil good, are at it again. These are same people who call homosexuality good, and those for traditional marriage as bad. These are the same people that call abortion good, and those opposed to abortion as bad.

Regardless of your views on homosexuality and abortion, surely we can agree that building businesses in the West Bank is good for the Palestinians. It gives them jobs, and I see nothing better to promote harmony between Israelis and Palestinians than economic partnerships.

This is why I am happy and honored to serve as the president of Christians United for Israel for the local, El Paso branch. I am tired of seeing people pressured to abandon goodness. Make so mistake about this: Satan is behind the anti-God, anti-Christian and anti-Israel movement. Let’s take a stand and support our friends in Israel. And SodaStream is good for the Palestinians, too.

Click the link for the story:


Girl Scout Cookies

Some Christians have decided to not purchase Girl Scout Cookies over the alleged accusation that some of the profit of the GSUSA go to Planned Parenthood. Click the link the story:
I have trouble with the premise that if someone including the baker who works with GSUSA funds Plan Parent Hood, that somehow the local girl scout is an accomplice with them.
Look, in the end, what you purchase, (food, clothes, cars, houses), doesn’t some of it go to liberal politics and pro-abortion as well as conservative and right to life causes? If I buy something and even an employee who makes money through my purchase is a pro-abortion liberal, doesn’t some of my money go to that employees’ causes?  Do I stop buying because some portion goes to where I do not like? That is impossible in this world.
Unless the local scout troupe, that keeps most of the money, is pouring their money into abortion clinics, I am not going to turn down the cute, godly girls wanting to make a positive difference in our society. I just bought some cookies from one of the members of my church, and I can assure you that the family and little girl stand for the truth.

Humility comes before Grace

Humility comes before Grace

James 4:6
6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
I. Humility
A. Relationship with Grace.
B. Grace is received without merit, so humility is built on grace.
C. Grace is like water. Water flows down to the lowest parts of the earth. Grace flows down to the one who humbles and lowers himself.
D. More grace

Phil 2:3
3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.
II. Definition of humility.
A. Consider others better than yourself.
B. Someone gets promoted, you consider them to be better.
C. David was humble. And faithful\
D. The people God called showed humility when they responded to the Call:
1. Moses, I am slow of speech.
2. Gideon, I am from the least tribe, member of the lowest clan of the tribe.
3. Jeremiah, I am too young.
4. Isaiah, I am unclean and a member of on unclean people.
5. Amos, I am no prophet. I am only a shepherd.
6. John the Baptism. I am not he.
7. Peter, Depart from me, for I am a sinful man.
8. Paul, I am the least of God’s people, chief sinner.
D. Pride creeps in the form of jealousy. Gets paid more, more likeable, promoted,
E. Eliab judge David’s heart.
F. Moses and Korah.

Prov 16:18
8 Pride goes before destruction,
a haughty spirit before a fall.
III. Battle with pride is lifelong. You can begin in humility and end in pride.
A. Saul downfall was pride.
1 Sam 15:17
17 Samuel said, “Although you were once small in your own eyes, did you not become the head of the tribes of Israel?
B. Saul misjudge his son in law. Insecurity feeds pride.

Rom 12:3
3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.

Rom 12:6
6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith.
IV. Exaggerated view of your gifts.
A. I made my boss rich. He can’t get along without me.
B. REVELATION: World advance before our birth and it will advance after our death.
C. We are loved by God. God uses us for his glory. But none of us are indispensable.

1 Pet 4:10
10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
V. Faithfulness. Someone who does what he says he will do or does what a higher authority told him to do. It is also someone who does what he is gifted to do whether asked or not, or whether he promises to do it or not.
1. Promise
2. Command.
3. Fulfill your gift.
A. A person is faithful when he sees others better than himself.
B. I see everyone who has proven themselves more than me as one who has authority over me.

Luke 2:40
40 And the child grew and became strong; he was filled w
ith wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.
VI. Teachable—wisdom.
A. Grace and wisdom.
B. Humility teaches you wisdom.
C. Even Jesus, who was the wisdom of God, asked his elders questions.
Luke 2:46
46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.

Prov 11:2
2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace,
but with humility comes wisdom.
VII. Disgrace means “not” grace. Disgrace is humiliation.
A. Humility brings wisdom.
1. Parents correct
2. Spouse correct
3. Boss correct
4. Pastor correct
B. No one under authority has the right to correct those over them. That’s pride.

Luke 17:7-10
7 “Suppose one of you had a servant plowing or looking after the sheep. Would he say to the servant when he comes in from the field, ‘Come along now and sit down to eat’? 8 Would he not rather say, ‘Prepare my supper, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may eat and drink’? 9 Would he thank the servant because he did what he was told to do? 10 So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.'”
VIII. When we have done our duty, do not look for a pat in the back.
A. No amount of awards, no amounts of appreciation, no amounts of thanks you, no amounts of compliments, will be enough for a prideful person.
B. Jesus teaches, The fact you think you need one token of appreciation is a sign of pride.
C. We should never NEED affirmation.

Grace to be Blessed

Grace to be Blessed

John 1:16
16 From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.

John 1:16-17
16 And from his fulness have we all received, grace upon grace.
I. Have you ever given a gift that someone did not use? Juicer, gift card, clothing
A. Grace is not a one time transaction, but a continued gift giving by God.
B. God intends for you to receive and use every gift that grace purchased.
C. Grace is the payment that Christ made at the cross.

II. The most maligned gift of all is the gift of prosperity.
A. Bible speaks positively about prosperity.
B. Bible warns about the abuse of wealth.
C. Greed is not the sole domain of the very wealthy.

2 Cor 8:9
9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

2 Cor 9:8
8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
III. Paul links grace with abundance. He calls wealth “grace” abound to you.
A. Paul associates the actual substitutionary sacrifice of Christ with wealth.
B. I get the definition of being rich from 2 Cor 9:8: You have all your needs met so that you can help meet other people’s needs.
2 Cor 9:11
11 You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
C. Paul reiterates this definition in different words.

2 Cor 8:9
9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
IV. Grace means that Christ paid for what you need.
A. Living by Grace is really trusting in the payment God made so that we can have salvation, health, prosperity, happiness.
B. A person who gives a gift is temporarily poorer.
C. There is no sacrifice if I give something but it does not make me suffer.
D. Paul speaks of the atonement in terms of Grace.
E. “Jesus Christ was rich.” He cannot help the poor if he is poor himself.
F. “He became poor.” First in terms of the incarnation.
1. Poor family, two pigeons.
2. Jesus came to the family to bless them. Immediately the family receives a large sum of money from the wise men.
3. Carpenter is a great skill, but Jesus leaves it. (Becomes poor to enter the ministry.)
4. His ministry makes people rich, He supplies. (water into wine, feeds the multitude, pays taxes through the coin in a fish’s mouth, he causes his disciples to catch fish)
G. Second he becomes poor in terms the cross.

Deut 28:47-48
47 Because you did not serve the Lord your God joyfully and gladly in the time of prosperity, 48 therefore in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and dire poverty,
IV. God describes poverty: “hunger, thirst, nakedness,” the phrase “dire poverty” is actually separated from the three words: hunger, thirst and nakedness. The three words define dire poverty.
Matt 25:42-43
42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
A. Jesus describes his poverty: “hungry.” “thirsty” “stranger” “clothes” “sick and in prison”
B. Jesus last meal was the Passover. He had not eaten breakfast or lunch.
C. Prison, all disciples abandon him.
D. Naked,
John 19:23-24
23 When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom.
24 “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.”
This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled which said,
“They divided my garments among them
and cast lots for my clothing.”
So this is what the soldiers did.
1. Possible four groups of clothing: Tunic, cloak, belts, sandals, headband.
E. Thirst: John 19:28 Jesus said, “I am thirsty.”
F. Don’t spiritualize the riches. Take it for what it means.

V. I made a decision early in my walk with God that I would not allow his giving of his wealth to go to waste on me. I would gladly accept his wealth and have all my needs abundantly supplied with plenty to help others.
A. Just as I would not allow the price he paid for my salvation, forgiveness, victory over sin and the devil, and healing go to waste, I will not allow his being made poor for me go to waste.

2 Cor 8:7
-see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
VI. Jesus excels in the grace of giving, so we should too.
2 Cor 9:6-7
6 Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.
A. Your prosperity is tied directly with your own generosity.
B. If I want the grace of forgiveness, I must forgive.
C. Jesus life was sowing and reaping. He sowed by coming to a poor family, Mary and Joseph. He sowed by leaving his family business and going into the ministry. He sowed by giving his life on the cross.
D. Does anyone think that today, the Lord is poor? NO!