Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Jesus Turned Water To Wine, Not Alcohol

The Bible says Jesus miraculously turned water into wine. It never says, however, He turned water into alcohol. Don’t let anyone push you into believing the Bible says otherwise. I’ve not dealt directly with Jesus turning water to wine at Gulf Coast Pastor, but I have in Ancient Wine and the Bible
Mark H. Creech,* however, has recently written a couple of excellent articles on Jesus turning water into wine. These are well worth your time. Links are given below.

I appreciate his stand, and am honored that he uses Ancient Wine and the Bible as a reference. He also references another book I highly recommend, Alcohol Today: Abstinence in an Age of Indulgence.

Drinking and Jesus Turning Water to Wine
Drinking: Continuing the Conversation
*Mark H. Creech has served as pastor of churches in New York and North Carolina. He now serves as Executive Director of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, and is a writer, radio commentator, and speaker.

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, April 23, AD 2013. 

Ancient Wine Production and the Bible
  Other articles in lower right margin.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. -Genesis 1:1 
The earth is the Lord's, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein.
-Psalm 24:1

Thoughts on Earth Day (April 22) and the environment:

1. Christians should be concerned about the environment.

It is the creation of our Heavenly Father. Support reasonable measures to decrease pollution and enhance the environment. Don’t litter. Enjoy nature and the outdoors. Plant a garden, a tree. Plant to provide food and shelter for wildlife. Learn about and enjoy God’s creation.*

2. We are to have dominion over it. Genesis 1:28

That doesn’t mean to trash it - but to use its resources wisely. Farming, ranching, logging, hunting, fishing, trapping can be reasonable ways to use and balance the resources God gave us.

Drilling and using the oil God gave us is a reasonable use of the earth’s resources. If you drive an automobile, apparently you agree as well. If you disagree, I expect to see you riding a bicycle.

3. Be honest, truthful about the environment.

Many of the radical environmentalists are deceptive and untruthful about environmental issues.

Knowledge, opinions, weather cycles change.

For example:

On the first Earth Day in 1970 - people were protesting against Global Cooling. When I was in grade school we were taught Global Cooling. For several years now they have used the same evidence to teach Global Warming. Now they are beginning to speak of Climate Change. That seems to be a winner - the climate will change, and weather cycles come and go.

Once they protested against nuclear power - now they’re for it.

Environmentalists were for plastic grocery bags, now they’re against them.

There is a growing concern about Ethanol increasing the cost of food for the poor and actually hurting the environment.

Let’s be honest about the facts. Let’s be reasonable about environmental laws.

4. Worship the Creator, not the creation.

Worshipping the creation is idolatry.

Who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. -Romans 1:25

Never confuse worshipping the Creator with worshipping the creation.

5. Most important, tell people about the Creator. John 3:16

No matter how well we take care of this world, we are all going to leave it some day. We must be prepared for the life to come.

* This year I’ve planted six pecan trees, three persimmon trees, one grapefruit tree, a rose, and a number of other plants. In the next day or two I’ll be grafting a couple of pecan trees. I now get fruit and nuts from a number of trees I’ve planted in the past. I’ve studied and enjoy nature, the environment and how it all works together. I invite you to do the same.

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, April 22, AD 2013

Global Warming, Global Cooling, & Climate Change

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Obituary - George Beverly Shea

One of the most beloved Gospel singers, George Beverly Shea (AD 1909-2013), moved from this world to Heaven yesterday, April 16, 2013.

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association published the following obituary:

CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 16, 2013 – George Beverly Shea, 104, of Montreat, North Carolina, soloist of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA), died this evening following a brief illness.

Since George Beverly Shea first sang for Graham in 1943 on the Chicago radio hymn program, “Songs in the Night,” Shea has faithfully carried the Gospel in song to every continent and every state in the Union. Graham’s senior by ten years, Shea devotedly preceded the evangelist in song in nearly every Crusade over the span of more than one-half century.

Shea was the recipient of ten Grammy nominations, a Grammy Award in 1965, and was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Grammy organization in 2011. He was also a member of the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame (1978), and was inducted into the Religious Broadcasting Hall of Fame in February 1996. Shea was also inducted into the inaugural class of the Conference of Southern Baptist Evangelists’ “Hall of Faith” in 2008.

“I first met Bev Shea while in Chicago when he was on Moody Radio,” said Billy Graham. “As a young man starting my ministry, I asked Bev if he would join me. He said yes and for over 60 years we had the privilege of ministering together across the country and around the world. Bev was one of the most humble, gracious men I have ever known and one of my closest friends. I loved him as a brother. My prayer for his wife, Karlene, and his children, Ron and Elaine, is that God will strengthen them during this time.”

Born in Winchester, Ontario, Canada, where his father was a Wesleyan Methodist minister, Shea’s first public singing was in the choir of his father’s church. Between Crusade, radio, and television dates in many countries, he sang at hundreds of concerts and recorded more than 70 albums of sacred music. At age 23 he composed the music to one of his best known solos, “I’d Rather Have Jesus.”

“Even though Bev was 10 years older than my father, he never acted his age,” said Franklin Graham. “He was absolute fun to be with. Bev was one of the most gracious and unassuming men I have known. He was always encouraging and supportive, a man of deep faith and strong commitment to Jesus Christ.”

Shea is survived by his wife, Karlene, and his children from his first marriage, Ronald and Elaine. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Erma, who died in 1976.

Ron, born in 1948 in Chicago, graduated from Trinity International University in Deerfield, Ill., in 1971. For more than 30 years, Ron has been an associate in Crusade ministry through the BGEA, assisting in preparatory work for evangelistic crusades involving Mr. Graham and more recently for Franklin Graham’s ministry. He is married to the former Kathy Ford.

Details on the funeral service for Shea will be forthcoming.

Visit www.billygraham.org for additional information.


For those interested, Bill Gaither has DVDs available featuring the singing of George Beverly Shea.

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, April 17, AD 2013.

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Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Killing of Infants

Ever wonder why Christians oppose abortion? Part of the reason is found in the article below. 

Why has the national news media ignored this story? Could it be because they do not want to show any negative aspects of abortion clinics? Could it be they are biased in favor of abortion?

Gosnell's Abortion Clinic Horrors Described

NASHVILLE (BP) -- Testimony to the horrors inside Kermit Gosnell's clinic continues to mount in the Philadelphia abortion doctor's murder trial.

In a trial that began in March, Gosnell faces seven counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of viable children who were killed after delivery and a count of third-degree murder in the death of a Virginia woman during a 2009 abortion.

Those seven babies were only some of hundreds at least six months into gestation who were killed outside the womb after induced delivery at Gosnell's clinic, a grand jury reported in 2011. After delivery, Gosnell -- or another staff member in his absence -- would jab scissors into the back of a baby's neck and cut the spinal cord, according to the grand jury. Gosnell called the killing of these children "snipping."

In recent testimony regarding practices at the Women's Medical Society clinic in West Philadelphia:

-- Former Gosnell employee Steven Massof said April 4 a "snipping" is "like a beheading," The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Massof, serving a residency with Gosnell he later learned was unaccredited, performed abortions at the clinic. During his testimony, he guided jurors to feel the spot on the back of their necks where the children's spines would be severed. Several jurors did so, according to The Inquirer. When mothers were given drugs to induce sudden contractions, "[I]t would rain fetuses. Fetuses and blood all over the place," Massof said, according to Operation Rescue's Cheryl Sullenger, who was in the courtroom.

-- Lynda Williams said April 9 part of her job was to pick up the bodies of babies expelled from their mothers' wombs in the waiting room after receiving large doses of drugs to dilate their cervices. When a second-trimester child was still moving after being expelled into a toilet, Williams said she followed Gosnell's training by using scissors to cut his spinal cord. "I did it once, and I didn't do it again because it gave me the creeps," she said, The Inquirer reported.

-- Photos of several dead babies were shown to the jury April 2. Each had a "gaping wound" in the back of his neck, Sullenger reported.

-- Karen Feisullin, who performs abortions in her practice as an obstetrician/gynecologist, said April 2 she had never heard of a doctor "snipping" the spinal cords of babies, according to The Inquirer. She also said there was no medical reason for Gosnell's habit of severing the feet of babies and storing them in jars.

-- Philadelphia Fire Department Lt. Don Burgess testified March 25 that firefighters were unable to take a woman on a stretcher through the clinic's hallways because they were too narrow, The Inquirer reported. Paramedics were trying to save the life of Kamamaya Mongar, 41, who went into a coma during an abortion and died. Though an emergency door was near Mongar, it was chained shut and no one on staff, including Gosnell, had a key, Burgess said. Firefighters opened the door with a bolt-cutter to take her to the hospital, where she died.

Gosnell could receive a death sentence if he is found guilty of a first-degree murder charge. The trial is expected to last six to eight weeks.
-Baptist Press; bpnews.net.

See more at: 

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, April 14, AD 2013. 

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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

What the Bible Says About Homosexuality

Often people speak of a biblical subject as though everyone knows what the Bible says. They may not know, however, and may have never taken the time or do not know how to look up the biblical teaching. 

Since the Bible is God’s holy, inspired, inerrant Word, we should approach it with reverence and as our final rule for faith and practice. It is God’s manual for how we are to live our lives.

While one should read them in context, following are the major Scriptures that deal with homosexuality and same-sex marriage:

Sodom and Gomorrah
Homosexuality is first mentioned in the Bible in connection with Sodom and Gomorrah. This was not their only sin, but it was certainly a prominent one, and a reason God judged these cities.

But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the Lord. -Genesis 13:13

And the Lord said, “Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grave. -Genesis 18:20

4 Now before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both old and young, all the people from every quarter, surrounded the house. 5 And they called to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may know them carnally.” -Genesis 19:4-5

Then the Lord rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the Lord out of the heavens. -Genesis 19:24

The look on their countenance witnesses against them, And they declare their sin as Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to their soul! For they have brought evil upon themselves. -Isaiah 3:9

Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city! -Jesus Christ; Matthew 10:15

And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly. -2 Peter 2:6

As Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. -Jude 7

Other Scripture
You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. -Leviticus 18:22

If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. -Leviticus 20:13

No one is asking for this penalty of death today, but this Scripture shows the seriousness with which God viewed this sin. What a contrast to our present day culture in entertainment and pornography where most any deviant practice is acceptable. Some things are an abomination (abhorrent, disgusting) to a holy God.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting. -Romans 1:26-28

9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. -1 Corinthians 6:9-11

This is perhaps the most important Scripture about homosexuality. Notice that some of the saints were involved in immorality, but they were saved by faith in Jesus. Whether this sin or any other sin, after all we are all sinners (Romans 3:23), Jesus blood can make the vilest sinner clean.

For fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine. -1 Timothy 1:10

Jesus’ View on Marriage
6 But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female.’ 7 ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8 and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9 Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” -Jesus Christ; Mark 10:6-9 (Jesus is referring to Bible passages in Genesis 1:27; 2:24; 5:2).

Forgiveness of Sin
We are all sinners. But if we repent (turn from) our sins and ask God’s forgiveness, He will forgive and cleanse us of all sin.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. -1 John 1:9

God has a Plan A and a Plan B. 
2 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. -1 John 2:1-2

God’s Plan A is that you do not sin in the first place. That is always the best practice. It is easier to not start in a particular sin, than to start and then struggle to stop. Some sinful practices will grab you and not let you go. So stay far away.

But we are human and sometimes fall. God still loves us and has a Plan B. If we sin, we may still have to deal with the consequences, but if we repent and come back to God, He will forgive us. Jesus loves you, and He died for you. Trust in Him. Stay close to Jesus, His Word, and His church. Stay far from sin.

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, April 9, AD 2013. 

Jesus Christ on Same-Sex Marriage
Why Wait?
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