Archive for the ‘Political’ Category

Gentlemen. We Are At War.

July 8, 2014

Is there a battle to win and a cost if we don’t fight? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

Readers of this blog probably know by now that I quite like the church that Allie and I have found. I get a sermon that is intellectually satisfying while touching the heart as well. I wish I could say that this was the norm when it came to churches, but alas, I cannot. Too many churches have the congregations just getting some pablum so they can go home and at the end of the day feel good about themselves.

Christians. Take a look at the culture around you. Does it look like we’re really making an impact? Does it look like the church is being salt and light in this world?

If not, then why should we go to church and feel good about ourselves? If we are not obeying the Great Commmission, then we should be looking at ourselves with shame.

I have in fact reached the point where I want to go up to pastors and say to them “Please tell me why I should believe that Jesus rose from the dead.” There are two answers that are unacceptable for this one. Now there could be variants on how these answers are said but the answers are still the same.

“The Holy Spirit tells me that Jesus rose from the dead.”

“The Inerrant Word of God says Jesus rose from the dead.”

What’s the problem with both of these? In the long run, they both beg the question. You say the Holy Spirit tells you this? Fine. The Holy Spirit also apparently tells Mormons that the Book of Mormon is from God and that Joseph Smith is a true prophet. Do you believe that? Why should I think what you’re experiencing is the Holy Spirit and not something else? You could say “Well if you experience it, you know who it is.” Don’t you think the Mormons would say the exact same thing?

What about the latter? Now I do hold to inerrancy, but I hold to inerrancy as a conclusion and not a presupposition. You want to claim your holy book is the final authority. Fine. Muslims do the exact same thing. Why is it that I should believe what you say about your holy book but I should not believe what the Muslims say about theirs?

If all you have is your own subjective viewpoint for defending the resurrection, you will not last when opposition comes your way. When I meet pastors like this now I have a simple wish to make of them. “Get out of the pulpit. We’re in a war and we don’t need people like you dragging us down. Give your office to someone who deserves it.”

You see, too many pastors are acting like there isn’t a battle going on. They still have this idea that all Christianity is supposed to teach us is how to be good people. Christ did not need to come just to teach us ethics. The people of the day could have got that from the philosophers of their time. Christ came to bring about the Kingdom of God. Note that. Kingdom. How many people out there think that you could belong in a Kingdom and not care about what you were to do for the King but only think about what the King was to do for you?

There is a culture war that is going on here in America. If you want to deny this, then you are quite simply a fool. There is an active homosexual agenda that’s wanting to silence your voice on the public square. Abortion has been around for 40+ years and we have seen the lives of millions of innocent babies claimed. The new atheist agenda is spreading like wildfire through the colleges and your students are going to encounter it. Muslims would be delighted to bring Sharia Law here to America.

There is not a question any more of if we and our children will face opposition. We will. There is only the question of how we would face it.

Picture if you had a son or daughter who had to take a job somewhere where you had concerns about them walking to their car in the parking lot. What are you going to do? You might ask the police to keep a watch on the area, but the police can’t be there 24/7. What else could you do? You might want to say “I’ll give my children mace” or “I’ll enroll them in a class so they can carry a concealed weapon” or “I’ll have them learn karate.” Why? You want your children to have a fighting chance if they come against enemy opposition.

Picture your having a son who goes into the military. You receive word from his officers that they are about to fly overseas and go and fight the enemy. You ask if your son has taken any courses in combat to prepare for this mission and you hear “Nah. We don’t think that’s really necessary. We figure if we just give them a gun that they’ll know enough to be able to protect themselves.” I suspect you’ll be calling your Congressman or Senator before too long if that’s the case.

Yet we want to send our children into the lions’ den regularly and do so without giving them basic protection in apologetics?

There’s a word for that.

That word is “Stupid.”

Some of you might say “Well my children aren’t going to college.” Okay. College isn’t for every person, but this is happening in high school! Opposition will be there and not just intellectual opposition, but moral opposition. You want your children to practice a Biblical sexual ethic. What reason will you give them? If you just have them say “The Bible says so”, their friends in high school who are not Christians and are sexually active will be more than happy to clear them of their delusions on the Bible. If that takes place, do you really think your assurances will be enough to overpower hormones? How many of you would have had that work with your parents?

Some of you might say you will home school your children. Fine. Do that. Keep in mind this reality however. Sooner or later your children are going to leave home and go off into the world. Are they going to be prepared or not? If not, you are one who will be held accountable, especially the fathers. The fathers are the main ones in Ephesians 5 who are to raise up their family and the only ones said to give an account for how the whole family turns out. I’m not at all saying mothers are unimportant in this. Mothers are vastly important. Fathers in the Biblical teaching however are called to be leaders of their family and to raise up their children well. If you’re reading this and a father, imagine how you will stand before God and give an account of how you raised your children. If they’re not equipped and they fall away, what account will you give?

The reality is that we can win this battle. I think of a certain person in apologetics who recently said about my position to reclaim academia “How do you plan on doing that in a nation under the judgment of God?” How? Simple. One battle at a time. How dare we abandon our intellectual heritage and give it right over to the enemy! This is especially the case with NT scholarship where Christians should be at their strongest. We have too often let the enemy dictate how the battle will be fought. No more.

In other battles, when Christians do something, results happen. When Chick-Fil-A Day came, Christians went in droves to their Chick-Fil-A stores and set records in fast food sales for that day. When Duck Dynasty was pulled from A&E, Christians started on their own a boycott page and called their cable companies and canceled. Cracker Barrel had decided to not carry Duck Commander material. They changed their mind on that quickly when Christians spoke up! When Suntrust decided to pull away from some men who were in support of traditional marriage, Christians immediately began going to their Facebook page and letting them know their discontent and began pulling their accounts. Before a day had passed, Suntrust changed their mind.

Christians WON all of these battles.

The problem is not that the church cannot win battles. The problem is that the church rarely shows up.

I have too often seen churches deny the need for apologetics training. I will go to churches regularly and offer them to come and work with them. It will be of no charge to them whatsoever! I would be delighted just to teach. 99% of the time the answer is that they don’t really need something like that. I always leave a church like that realizing the pastor is just deluding himself. As one of my mentors once told me “The pastor will call you back when his son comes home from college and announces he’s abandoned his faith.”

When we encounter those who abandon their faith, it is normally for foolish reasons. Also, it can be because too much emphasis was placed on a secondary doctrine instead of a primary, the resurrection of Jesus. The two biggest offenders in this category are young-earth creationism and inerrancy. In both cases, when someone finds a reason why these are called into question and they no longer believe them, everything else crumbles like a house of cards. If inerrancy or young-earth creationism are made the foundation for the Christian faith, we are setting ourselves up to fail.

Make no mistake. We are at war. We cannot be just playing games and getting pablum at church and expect to be able to fulfill the Great Commission in this day and age. Here in America, we have the best means to equip our people. There is no excuse for our being unprepared for the battle that awaits us. IF we who have been given so much ability to learn and spread the truth fail with it, we will all give an account before God of how we did.

I can only end with saying what Joshua said for how he would decide. Choose this day who you will serve but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

In Christ,
Nick Peters


Deeper Waters 1/25/2014: Freda Bush

January 23, 2014

What’s coming up on this Saturday’s episode of the Deeper Waters Podcast? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.


Last time, we had Clinton Wilcox, a staff apologist from the Life Training Institute come on the Deeper Waters Podcast to talk about abortion. Much of the time was spent discussing philosophical issues and answering objections that people raise to try to justify abortion.

What about the medical aspects? What happens to a woman’s body when she gets pregnant? What happens while she is pregnant? What is going on medically with the baby? Can we chart the growth of the baby? What happens when the growth of the baby is suddenly terminated? For all of these, we need someone who knows medicine.

That’s why I’m bringing by a guest that has been on an episode prior to talk about the hook-up culture. That is Dr. Freda Bush, a gynecologist who works with the Ruth Institute at the It Takes A Family conferences.

Dr. Bush has been in the practice for several years and on our previous show, she talked about what she’s seen with the rampant sexuality in our culture. One aspect we did not get to spend too much time on in that show was the aspect of abortion. Now we get to make up for that.

For instance, there are some claims that a woman is more at risk for breast cancer if she has an abortion. Are these claims true? Are they false? Or are the results just inconclusive at the moment? We’ll discuss this with Dr. Bush and see if she brings up any other medical aspects that we don’t know about, which is quite likely.

Another aspect that needs to be discussed is what happens with the women after an abortion. Not only do they have any physical risks, but are there any psychological risks that are involved as well? How do women often times behave after an abortion? Do women wrestle with guilt as a result of abortion? Does the suicide or depression rate go up for women who have had an abortion?

Since we’ve talked about the hook-up culture, what does this especially do to young and unmarried women who might think that they have been coerced by their boyfriends so that the guys can get to enjoy the thrills of sex still without having to have the responsibility of being a father to a living child?

Also, be warned those of you who are squeamish, and I actually do include myself in this group. I do plan on asking what exactly goes on in an abortion and to show how squeamish I am, I can tell you that I already feel a little bit nauseous just typing in that sentence. (And my wife who was looking for the image to use for the show is feeling sick right now.)

So be sure to join us this Saturday from 3-5 PM EST to listen to Dr. Freda Bush talk about the medical aspects of abortion. The call in number is 714-242-5180. The link can be found here:

In Christ,

Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/11/2014: Clinton Wilcox

January 9, 2014

What’s coming up this Saturday on the Deeper Waters Podcast? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

At the Deeper Waters Podcast, I seek to bring you the very best in Christian apologetics by getting leading scholars in the field. I also try to get those who are rising up in the field and who I think are worth promoting. I’ve had several help me and I want to return the favor. This Saturday then, I’ll be having Clinton Wilcox on my show.

Okay. So I thus slipped up one Saturday….

Seriously, Clinton’s a great guy and I’ve been interacting with him on Facebook for a number of years and I know that abortion debate is one of his passions. That’s why he’ll be on my show in order to make a case for the pro-life position as January is the month that we are all reminded of Roe v. Wade.

Clinton is a staff apologist now in fact for the Life Training Institute. This is a pro-life ministry that is ran by Scott Klusendorf and is a ministry that is definitely worth supporting and the best ministry I can think of that you should go to in order to learn how to defend the pro-life position. If Clinton is an apologist with this group, that should tell you about his ability.

Clinton has also debated this position as he did in an episode of the Razor Swift podcast. Clinton will be using some of the best scientific and philosophical argumentation out there in order to bring home the fact that life is indeed something sacred, as we saw last week with Gretchen Passantino, and that the pro-life cause is a cause that is one wroth defending.

Abortion is still a major problem in our society and unfortunately, what I’ve noticed is a coldness about how we handle life issues. Many times when I debate pro-abortionists, it is often the case that the question of when life begins just doesn’t really matter. What matters is the personal autonomy and the freedom of the woman involved. Is this really the case?

If people like Clinton are right, and I believe that they are of course, what really matters is the fact that since abortion has become legal in our society, that it has resulted in millions of deaths of innocent babies and that the most dangerous place that someone can be on Earth today, is unfortunately in the womb of a mother.

I hope you will be listening in this Saturday so you can be equipped with the facts that you need in order to make a case for the pro-life cause. There are several lives that will never even get the chance to live outside the womb of a mother due to the wickedness that is abortion today.

The show will be airing at the usual time this week, from 3-5 PM EST. The date will be this Saturday as well. As always, you can call in with your questions at 714-242-5180. I hope that you’ll be part of our listening audience.

The link can be found here.


In Christ,
Nick Peters

Treating Jason Collins Equally

May 1, 2013

Is Jason Collins really a hero? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

The homosexual community has been stating for a long time that they want to be treated equally. Okay. Let’s consider that. Right now, the news is about an NBA player named Jason Collins who plays for the Washington Wizards and has come out and said that he is a homosexual.

Upfront, I will tell you that I am not a basketball fan so I am not up on Collins’s playing ability, though I understand he was about to head out and that his playing ability was not exceptional. If it hadn’t been for this statement of his, no one would have really remembered him in the sport overall.

Now we’ve been told that this is an act of courage. How it is that an act of courage is to come out and say you agree with a position that the popular media agrees with and is celebrated regularly in the populace, I have no idea. What is not being considered as much is what happened before this point.

Enter Carolyn Moos. Who is this person? She was someone who spent eight years of her life on Collins. They were to be married in fact and in 2009, the wedding was cancelled by Collins. Until this event happened, Moos had no idea why it was that she was abandoned.

If we were not so busy celebrating the fact that Collins admitted to being homosexual, we would be looking at the story of a guy who led a woman on for eight years and then abandoned her just as she was anticipating getting married. Those are eight years that Moos cannot get back. Those are years she could have been dating another man and seeking her spouse. Those are years that she was lied to.

It was a similar incident with Bishop Robinson, the first practicing homosexual bishop. While everyone was talking about him, it was ignored that in the background was a wife and kids that he abandoned for a man. Are we to overlook the fact that he broke his marital vows and divorced? Are we to overlook that he abandoned his children?

For those wanting equal treatment, let’s be consistent. What are we to say about a guy who abandons a woman saying he will marry her after several years? What are we to say about someone who abandons his wife and his children?

Are there any examples of courage? In the past, Carrie Prejean would have been a great example, and in all honesty, she still is. Do you remember her? She was the contestant in the Miss America pageant from California who said she believes that marriage is between a man and a woman. We are certainly thankful that Perez Hilton and the rest accepted her different and diverse view with love and tolerance.

Of course they didn’t! Prejean was mocked and insulted throughout the media simply for saying what she thinks is the case. For all the times that we’ve had feminists talk about the objectification of women, they were awfully silent when it came to Prejean. They didn’t mind men making derogatory remarks about her body.

As has been said, tolerance and diversity is a one-way street.

Yet there is another example of real courage. That’s ESPN commentator Chris Broussard. Broussard said that he believes homosexual actions and pre-marital sex are sinful. He is a Christian and this is his belief system. Now a world wanting to celebrate diversity is celebrating the diversity of Broussard’s opinion and a world wanting to celebrate tolerance is being understanding for Broussard’s view.

And if you believe that, I have some oceanfront property I want to sell you in Montana.

Going with the flow of popular culture does not take courage. What Broussard did does take courage, especially knowing he could well be putting his job and family on the line for being willing to state what he believes in. The tolerati will not be so accepting of this opinion.

What has not been learned is that if you only accept viewpoints you agree with, you are not practicing tolerance and you are not doing so in any sense. True tolerance does not mean you accept someone’s belief system. You don’t tolerate what you agree with. True tolerance means you allow someone the right to believe something differently.

I don’t approve of Collins’s lifestyle. What does that mean? We have a discussion on it. Does it mean I want him thrown out of the NBA? No. His being a homosexual has no effect on his playing basketball that I know of. By all means let him play, let him sign autographs, let him do whatever he can on the field. I’m just not required to accept his personal lifestyle and more than I would be required to accept the lifestyle of an athlete who is sleeping with multiple women.

When disagreement comes, debate it. Too often, debate is being about the people who disagree instead of about the topic itself. As soon as I see labels like “bigot” and “homophobe”, I know that we are no longer really doing debate. I am no longer defending my position. I’m being forced to defend having my position.

Perhaps if we are really doing equal treatment, we will consider what it means to do what was done to Moos. Perhaps we will want to make sure that Broussard gets the right to express his views without repercussion the way that people want Collins to.

My prediction? Equality will not be a big deal in this case. Like tolerance and diversity, the rule of equality only applies when it favors the other side.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 4/27/2013

April 26, 2013

What can we do to stop the national holocaust? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

Abortion has been the law of the land since 1973. On the 40th anniversary, the death toll is severe. A lot of Christians are also watching this issue with the Gosnell case coming to trial. What is it that Christians can do in order to address the silent holocaust killing our children?

My guest will be Megan Almon of the Life Training Institute. The Life Training Institute is a ministry of Scott Klusendorf dedicated to helping make the case for life. With Megan on the show, we will be looking at the various reasons that people give for having an abortion and why those reasons fall short.

Many Christians aren’t sure what to do to stop abortion. We will have that covered. There are some techniques you don’t want to use, but there are some that you do want to use. Megan will be instructing us on how she has recommended people make the case for life with LTI.

Naturally, we will be giving the reasons against abortion. How is it that it can be known that what is being put to death is an innocent human life? Can we say it is really alive? Can we say that it is really human? Even if we say those, can we say that it is really innocent? Each of those will be a topic of discussion.

What about all those women who decide to not get abortions? What will be done for them? How is it that Christians should respond to women who are pregnant and had considered having an abortion but decided to go against that idea. Are there any ministries that will offer support to a woman in need?

What about the women (and the men) who have allowed abortions to take place? What is to be said to them to help them? Can the body of Christ minister to people who are mothers and fathers of dead children, dead by their own hands? Can we show the forgiveness of Christ to those people while condemning the sinfulness of the action?

Also, this month as you know is Autism Awareness Month. We will be spending some time on the show talking about abortion and the disabled. Sadly, some babies are killed just because they’re not seen as genetically fit as others are. I am thankful that Allie and I were born to mothers and fathers who do not have that kind of attitude and believe that all human life is precious by nature of being human life.

Abortion is a debate that we need to be having today as so many babies are put to death regularly in what should be the safest place on Earth, the womb of their mothers. It would be fascinating to know just how different the world could be today if we had given those precious human lives just the simple chance to exist and grace us with their presence.

The link to the show can be found here. Call in number is 714-242-5180 from 3-5 EST on Saturday. I hope you’ll listen!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Allergic to Religion?

April 25, 2013

Does a tolerant culture really practice it? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

Recently, I wrote an article for the local paper on how a Christian is to live in a society where voting is a reality and still practice their faith. How do you integrate the two? What does it mean to say “Render unto Caesar”? For those who are interested, that article can be found here.

What has been much of the response? Immediately people assume that I want the Bible to be the law of the land much like a Muslim wants it for the Koran. It’s highly incorrect.

First off, when we speak about a theocracy, we often mean a generic idea since God is left undefined. If you want to know the kind of society a Christian would like to see most, well look at a society where Jesus is in charge. What would that look like? Look at what it was when He walked this Earth. What did He believe about how man should live? What did He believe about morality? If someone thinks that is what Jesus believes and this is the best leader we can have, why not vote that way?

Second, I am entirely for freedom of religion or non-religion for that matter. If someone wants to be an atheist, fine. He has no obligation to practice any religious belief. On the other hand, if someone wants to be a Muslim, by all means let them be provided they follow the laws of the land. If someone wants to build a mosque here, that is their right! If Muslims wants to raise up their children to be Muslims, let them do so.

How do we evangelize to such people? In the marketplace of ideas. That’s part of having a diverse society. We come together and we each present our claims at the table and why we believe those claims and we seek to examine them to see which claim if any is true.

Instead, the charges raised are well-poisonings designed to incite fear. “You want to force Christianity on everyone!” No. I seek no marriage between the state and the church. The authority of the church is to come from Christ Himself. It is not to come from government.

At the same time, they also don’t need to be on opposite poles where never the twain shall meet. The two are to work together. If we make them enemies as was the case with the Roman empire beforehand, it becomes just as problematic. Of course, it does fortunately get people to take Christianity more seriously.

Yet those in our society who are raising cries of Jihad, which is quite common, act as if any introduction of religion whatsoever into the public sphere will destroy society. The implicit understanding is that our culture must be entirely secular, yet if it is entirely secular, why should I think a marriage of secularism and the state will do any better than Christianity and the state? At least with Christianity there is an underlying moral framework with an objective basis. None for secularism so it will simply be a case of the moral preferences of the person or persons in charge.

The fear-mongering is a way simply to remove religion from the public square. You may practice religion and we are all for freedom of religion, but just don’t bring it out here for we want freedom from religion. You will no more get it without using force any more than I will get freedom from secularism. As long as there are those who want to not believe in God for instance, then I must let them have the freedom to have that belief in a society like America. Do they want to vote according to that belief? Let them! Does a Muslim want to vote in accordance with Islam? Let him! I have no problem with that. Naturally, I hope both sides lose when they disagree with Christianity, but I want them to have the freedom to vote what they think is right.

Instead, we get people who react to any mention of religion whatsoever in the public square the way Dracula reacts to a cross. It is as if having a drop of religion in the water supply of public thought will contaminate everyone. The best way to do that is to just eliminate it from public. Of course, those who do such are going against the tolerance that they often love to proclaim.

What is tolerance? Tolerance is simply the notion that while you may disagree with someone, which is essential for tolerance, they do have the right to hold and practice a belief that you disagree with. I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it. Modern tolerance has been that you must agree with what I say, you must accept what I say, and the same extends to behavior. In fact, we often move beyond tolerance to acceptance and celebration. Not only must you accept what I say and do, you must celebrate it and desire that I do so.

I fully accept that the atheist wishes to live without God in his life and wants to practice an atheistic lifestyle. I can accept it in the sense that that is reality and I must go with it, but I certainly will not celebrate it. For the Christian, that is a tragic position and the best thing I can do is to try with reasonable arguments to show him the error of his ways. From his perspective, I’m throwing my life away on an illusion and he must try to show me the error of my ways. That’s fine! Then let us meet with open exchange and determine who’s right and who’s wrong.

We must debate the question. It is better to debate a question and never settle it than to settle a question without debating it. Whatever the question is, let us debate it. If anyone disagrees with a position, let the evidence be presented. Let it be examined. Let it be challenged.

Could it be the real reason for the allergy to religion is because those who want to have the main say in society are scared of any threats to their rule? From the evidence I see thus far, that’s what I must go with. In the past, we had a church priesthood that many deemed totalitarian. Now, we have a secular priesthood with its own method of inquisition. They have their own creeds and their own statements of faith. The secularism is just as religious as the religions that it seeks to diminish.

What can Christians do? Christians need to keep presenting their case and be as informed as they can be. I personally support meeting the secularists on their own grounds and showing that their arguments do not hold up. It is quite amusing to go to those who claim to be the champions of reason and demonstrating how unreasonable they really are. Like the church in earlier days was accused of not practicing what they preach, so it can be shown that today’s authority teaching supposed reason and tolerance, do not practice what they preach, as reason simply becomes “thinking apart from any theistic idea” and tolerance becomes “Not disagreeing with us.”

In Christ,
Nick Peters

God’s Authority Outranks Government’s

April 22, 2013

How does one interact with government if Jesus is King? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

The following is an article that I wrote for the local newspaper in my monthly column.

In my last column I wrote about the gospels as campaigns with Jesus as king. What does that mean for the American political scene if Jesus is king? We are often told to render unto Caesar, but does that mean what we think it means, or have we imbibed some modern ideas into our thinking that are foreign to the 1st-century text?

In our enlightened time, it is common to think of the “world of faith” and the “world of reality” as separate. You can have your Christianity, but just make sure you compartmentalize it. Don’t bring it with you into the political sphere. Just keep it at home and go to church on Sunday and don’t interfere with education.

The Christian can have none of this. If Christ is Lord, He is Lord of everything. Jesus came on the scene essentially challenging Caesar. It was what British scholar and historian N.T. Wright called “fighting words.” Herod knew what Jesus was claiming. The priests in power knew it. Caesar would have known it as well. Jesus was claiming kingship.

Enlightenment thinking has said that faith belongs to a world above while man will rule the world down here. Now in essence, man has long ruled the world down here. Until the day when God is recognized universally as king, he has allowed men, even sometimes wicked men, to rule so there will be some order and justice.

Secularism, meanwhile, has decided that the old systems of the past must be rebuilt, and so we see an attack on everything the church has held to be sacred — be it Protestant, Catholic or Orthodox — throughout the ages. Any hint of religion is being removed to form a secular state, even now to the point where life in the womb has been killed and the world seeks to redefine marriage itself. The secular machine is on the march and is destroying all in its path under the label of “tolerance.”

What is a Christian to do? In a voting society, a Christian is certainly allowed to vote with what he believes to be true. A Muslim, an atheist and a Jew should all have the same right. If you think something is true, why should you compartmentalize it away from reality? Of course, I also hope more Christians would educate themselves on reality to get more than just “the Bible says” as to why they hold a certain moral stance. Our own Bibles tell us that moral truths are known apart from scripture and we need to be able to establish those moral truths, and if we can use the weapons of the enemy against them (weapons, by the way, that come from the Christian church and have been hijacked), then all the better.

Secularism has been tearing down the fences that have been built without asking G.K. Chesterton’s question: “Why were they put up in the first place?” Yet too many of us know that when man seeks to expel God from the world, he will have to put something in God’s place, and usually that something will be a mirror. If man thinks he has no authority that is greater than him that he is subservient to, then we can expect that his true colors will be revealed. If any doctrine of Christianity will be established then, as it can be today easily enough by watching the evening news, it will be that of original sin.

How do we follow Jesus’s advice, then? We give Caesar what is his due, but make sure we do the exact same with God, and keep in mind that God is a higher authority than Caesar. We are by no means to take up arms and seek to destroy Caesar that way, but we are also not to lie down and do absolutely nothing when Caesar comes after us. We must make our stand today and state that we are people of the true king of this Earth and seek to further the time when his rule will be completely realized on the Earth.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Levitical Layout

April 17, 2013

Does the case for the layout of Leviticus affect the condemnations of homosexuality? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

A friend of the ministry recently sent me this item:

It’s a fascinating read on the work of Mary Douglas in interpreting the book of Leviticus. Douglas thinks that the book describes a layout of the tabernacle as it were. Chapters 1-17 deal with the common area. 18-24 deal with the priestly area. 25-27 deal with the Holy of Holies. Does that mean that chapters 18-20 would only apply to the priests?

Well first off, let’s look at some commands in these chapters that would not apply to the common folk then.

18:21 “Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Molek, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the Lord.”

So priests could not sacrifice to Molech, but everyone else could.

19:4 “Do not turn to idols or make metal gods for yourselves. I am the Lord your God.”

Idolatry was only a no-no for priests. Not for everyone else.

19:11-18 “11 “‘Do not steal.

“‘Do not lie.

“‘Do not deceive one another.

12 “‘Do not swear falsely by my name and so profane the name of your God. I am the Lord.

13 “‘Do not defraud or rob your neighbor.

“‘Do not hold back the wages of a hired worker overnight.

14 “‘Do not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block in front of the blind, but fear your God. I am the Lord.

15 “‘Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly.

16 “‘Do not go about spreading slander among your people.

“‘Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor’s life. I am the Lord.

17 “‘Do not hate a fellow Israelite in your heart. Rebuke your neighbor frankly so you will not share in their guilt.

18 “‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”

All of these applied only to priests? That includes lying and stealing and loving your neighbor as yourself?

19:29 ““‘Do not degrade your daughter by making her a prostitute, or the land will turn to prostitution and be filled with wickedness.”

Only priests could not make their daughters prostitutes?

I hope the point is clear.

In fact, it is when we get to chapter 21 that we have a start with “Speak to the priests.” Before that, there is no reason to think the verses do not apply to the common man. In fact, since the end of chapters 18 and 20 tell of how the people in the land practiced these activities and thus were being cast out, it would follow that those people should have known that these behaviors were wrong.

Now could it be God is being more forward in holiness standards from 18 on? Sure. Let me also be clear Douglas makes no argument herself that the moral rules no longer apply that I saw, nor did the person who emailed me the information make any such statement.

If someone still disagrees, they’ll have to give reasons why only homosexuality should be excepted from the list. So far, the cases have just been special pleading.

Also, keep in mind that the argument is not “The Bible says so, therefore it’s true.” It’s just getting clear what the Bible says. (Although I do agree with it.) For the sake of argument, the Bible could be wrong on what it says, but let us be clear we are not wrong on what it is saying.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

The Escapist Mentality

April 16, 2013

Do you want to die and be with Jesus? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

In Philippians, Paul tells us that he desires to die and be with Christ. Does that fit anyone else? How many people really want to die and be with Christ? I have met several Christians that it seems their #1 desire at this point is they just want Christ to return so they can get out of this world. They want to die and be with Him.

Astute readers could be thinking, “Nick. That’s not the whole verse! Don’t you know how it ends?!”

Of course I do. I wanted to just emphasize the one part for now. What Paul said is that yes, he does desire that, but to go on living is more necessary.

Keep in mind, he said that in jail as well.

I consider Paul to be quite realistic in his approach. There is nothing wrong with looking forward to being with Christ. Yet Paul says this when it could be that death is right around the corner and he’s not sure which way things will go. Today, many Christians take a different approach. They want to die just because they want out of this world.

Note that last part is just as problematic to me. We have this idea that this world is an awful place and that we need to abandon ship and go back to the homeland. What if this world is the homeland? What if my overall position is right and the goal of God is to bring Heaven to Earth? Now this isn’t something that comes by political advancement or government actions, though we should seek the best in those areas, but by a divine act of God through the preaching of the gospel.

We should all be ready if need be to die for Jesus, but we should seek all the more to live for Him. Dying is scary, but quite simple. Once it’s done, it’s done. Living is a lifetime action that requires constantly dying to yourself. Dying for Jesus could be a way to bypass the harder task of living for Him.

We as Christians are called to engage the culture. We are not called to escape it, and too often we are escaping it and hiding in our little Christian caves and only interacting with people who agree with us. You might be building yourself up, but you’re not doing much for the culture that way.

This also includes pastors. Too many pastors just want to speak to like-minded people and don’t know what to do when the skeptic shows up with hard questions. It takes little courage to stand up to people who already agree with you and tell them what they already agree with. It’s like standing up in Hollywood and saying you support redefining marriage. If I want to hear about the courage of someone in Hollywood speaking out, I’ll wait until one of them has the guts to accept an award at the Academy Awards or some similar event and say they think marriage should only be between one man and one woman for life.

I prefer to engage the culture instead since I also think my eternity depends on what I did with this life. Did I live it in service of Jesus Christ? Did I leave this world a better place than I did when I came into it? I want it to be that when I stand before the throne, I will hear “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.” I want to know that any future descendants I have will be better off and if we don’t have children ourselves, I want to know that the world will be better for everyone else’s children.

This also fits in with the therapeutic nature of Christianity today. We want to feel safe and secure. It’s why ministries that do that get so much support, but apologetics ministries, like this one, don’t get much. Many people are interested in what helps them feel good. They’re not as interested in material that makes them think or engages the culture.

Of course, there are other ministries worth supporting. There’s nothing wrong with giving to your local church, which you should do, or supporting charities that help out with physical and mental conditions and such for people, or help families in crisis, or many other good things, but too many people can just give to a ministry and think that means they’ve done their part in Christian service. Well that is a part of it, but it’s not the whole deal. It would be like saying you hired a maid and therefore you cleaned your house. If you can afford a maid, great, but don’t speak about it like you’re the one really working.

The irony is that many of these Christians want to escape the world because it’s so evil and not realizing that their failure to engage the culture is making it worse for them and everyone else. You don’t like the way the world is? Neither do I. In fact, neither does God. That’s why Christ came! If you don’t like it, then instead of running away, do something about it.

In this battle, myself and other apologists I think are the ones on the front lines directly debating those seeking to do away with the only hope we have. Not everyone is meant to do that. I get it. I think everyone should have a basic apologetic argument for themselves, but not everyone is meant to be a professional apologist. Then do your own part.

We’ve already mentioned financial support. That’s good and should be done, but also be an encourager for those on the front lines. Go help out those in need. Volunteer at your church. Be willing to go on a mission trip. Seek to study the Bible and learn more about what it means to be like Christ and show that to the world. There are countless ways you can serve Christ.

When your work is done, you will be called into the presence of Jesus. You can look forward to that, but make sure your sole goal in life is not to escape what you see around you. You are where you live and you are when you live as well for a reason. Acts 17 tells us that. Your existence is not a mistake, but what you do with it could be. Seek to live the life for Christ.

If we will actually engage the culture, we will be amazed at what could happen. I think we could really end the marriage debate easily. We could do so much to stop the silent holocaust of abortion in our land. The spreading and living of the gospel will also do more to stop mass shootings than any law the government can pass.

Save the world. Engage the culture. Be Christian.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

The Danger of Tolerance

March 27, 2013

Is it ever wrong to be tolerant? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

A lot of Christians yesterday, including some in leadership, had the equals sign as an avatar of Facebook saying they wanted equality in marriage. I would like to have seen how they would have been responded to being told the standards of who one can marry is already the same for everyone, but I fear there is more heat than light on this issue and more are thinking with emotions than reasoning. This is especially so since politicians like Portman and McCaskill have given reasons that are largely emotional for a change of mind.

One aspect of this is the idea of tolerance. Christians want to be good people. I get that. We think it is good to be tolerant. Therefore, we decide we should be tolerant. We get the command that Jesus told us that we are not to judge and therefore it comes to “Who am I to judge someone else? Let God do that. I will be tolerant. That’s what Jesus would have me do.”

Keep in mind, Jesus made several judgments and he was hardly tolerant of the false teachings of those around Him. When we look at the epistles, it’s the same way. They hardly would have been written if the apostles had been practicing tolerance.

Of course, this is with the modern view of tolerance. The modern view is more along the lines of having to accept everything. One cannot say that another person is wrong in their position. All views are to be seen as equal and no view is any better than another.

Such a position will lead to numerous contradictions. For instance, if no view is better than another and all views are equal, what about the view that all views are not equal and some views are better than others? Is that to be treated the same way? If an exception is not made, then the principle is violating itself.

So am I saying Christians should be intolerant? No. I’m saying we should practice classical tolerance. In classical tolerance, you allow some wrong views to be held on matters of serious discussion. You still say the view is wrong, but you allow the person the freedom to hold that view.

This shows up in the NT. What about meat offered to idols? What about whether one should have wine? What about if any days are sacred? 1 Cor. 8-10 and Romans 14 are classic texts about this. If someone wants to do something like this, then let them, but the only problem Paul had was when one person started assuming they were more spiritual or better than another.

Note also that Paul also said some behaviors were clearly wrong. You do not tolerate lying or adultery or stealing. Interestingly, in 1 Cor. 6, homosexual behavior is included in this. Note especially that this is talking about the household of God. What about those outside? They are not held to Christian standards, though their behavior is still wrong.

In our country, we are allowed basic freedoms. For instance, the freedom of religion. The government is not to favor one religion over another. Hence, I will oppose Islam, but I defend their right to build mosques here and worship as they see fit, provided they obey the laws of the land in doing so.

Why oppose the change in marriage? Because this does affect everyone, particularly the least of these, the children. If you think that children have a right to have a relationship with their natural mother and father, then you have all the reason you need to keep marriage as it is.

Note also the other great danger of tolerance. It’s a one-way street. You can be sure that when the other side is in power and you want to practice your Christianity that says homosexual behavior is a sin, they won’t be so tolerant. You will be called to task. How do I know this? Because it’s happening already. Tolerance is not being practiced for those who disagree. Those who seek to celebrate diversity don’t seek to celebrate those who disagree with them.

Christians. Practice true tolerance, but don’t practice the modern notion. The church never prospers when it backs down on its Christian principles.

In Christ,
Nick Peters