Facts

It saddens me when churches lose their way and stray from THE mission to proclaim Jesus Christ, born, crucified and risen for the forgiveness of sins. Jesus and him alone is our hope. He is our peace. It is Jesus that gives joy that is untouchable. It is through Jesus that we see the full expression of love, for God is love. Therefore, it behooves us to stick to the facts and let everything else fall into place to the glory of God. The Church is not called to get involved in political advocacy. There are groups that specifically do that. The Church is different and needs to stay different:

Preach the Gospel and let the transformed lives of sinners through the Holy Spirit respond to the world around them as God calls them.
Preach the Gospel and don’t tinker with it – it’s perfect the way it is.
Preach the Gospel and don’t try to make it say something it doesn’t say.
Preach the Gospel with all humility and gentleness but also with boldness.
Preach the Gospel and do not fear the backlash from the world.
Preach the Gospel for that is the only way sinners are saved.

Church – stick to the facts and let God be God.

FACT: You are a sinner.
FACT: You cannot save yourself.
FACT: You are a sinner (did I say that already?).
FACT: You deserve eternal torment in hell.
FACT: You are a sinner (yup, this is important).
FACT: Jesus was born of a virgin.
FACT: Jesus is the sinless Son of God.
FACT: Jesus took your sin upon himself.
FACT: Jesus was crucified FOR YOU.
FACT: Jesus died and was buried.
FACT: Jesus smashed the gates of death.
FACT: Jesus lives.
FACT: You are a sinner (just in case you forgot).
FACT: Through faith in Jesus you are forgiven.
FACT: Through God’s grace you are saved.
FACT: This is indisputable.
FACT: God is love.
FACT: This Gospel is awesome!!!
FACT: You are a sinner and thus you need Jesus.

Stick to the FACTS and you’ll be fine.

To God be the glory!!!

A Reformation Poem

The 5 Solas of the Reformation are highlighted in bold in this poem. They are important statements in understanding the Good News of Jesus Christ as proclaimed in Scripture. The Gospel is from God alone, and praise be to God for that, otherwise we would surely mess it up and condemn ourselves.


Salvation from God was needed by me.
A sinner i am, i can’t disagree.
A Savior i needed, that’s my decree.
Listen right now and i’ll share how i’m free.

God’s grace alone is where it starts,
His love is free straight from His heart.
Through faith alone He will never depart.
For in Christ alone i have a new start.

So where’s this news? Well, it’s God’s Word alone.
It is there it says your sins He atones.
Jesus died and rose, he now sits enthroned.
Through faith alone you will ever be known.

Confess your sins and admit you need Him.
And forgiveness is yours way to the brim.
His light will shine and never grow dim.
And in His great love you will always swim.

Written to the glory of God alone.

A Gospel Poem

This poem is something I wrote as I prepared a sermon on Romans 10:8-17 — thinking about “beautiful feet” carrying the Gospel. I want people to call on the name of Jesus, but first we need to constantly reacquaint ourselves with the Gospel. So the Spirit placed this on my heart. May you receive this Good News again and again. To God be the glory, Amen.


You are a sinner, that is true.
God’s wrath you’ve certainly accrued.
Condemned to die, yes, you deserve.
A judgment from which you can not swerve.

Salvation you can not obtain.
You can’t do it, i’ll say again.
You need help, you certainly do,
In order to be made brand new.

So, what’s our hope? Well, i’ll proclaim –
You’re saved by Jesus holy name.
God’s holy wrath, he took for us.
For His love is in great surplus.

Jesus took your sins to the cross.
So your life would not be a loss.
Jesus died but death did not win.
Jesus rose much to death’s chagrin.

Now look to him and see God’s grace.
For this gift is yours to embrace.
You are a sinner that is sure,
But Jesus lives so you’ll be pure.

So repent and run fast to him.
And know peace filled over the brim.
Confess your sins, Yes, every one.
You are forgiven through the Son.

Now, Jesus lives and so will you.
And it excites me to review.
You are precious – his beloved bride.
Forever with him, you’ll abide.

Jesus Is Worth It

I am in Omaha, NE at the LCMC (Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ) Annual Gathering. I look forward to this event every year to connect with friends and colleagues in fellowship, worship and networking. It is also a time when I am encouraged in my faith. Case in point, at our opening worship on Sunday, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart through the sermon on Romans 10:14 and thus the following poem flowed out. Praise be to God!


I am a sinner that is true.
God’s wrath is most certainly due.
I fall short through every action.
My deeds have no satisfaction.

But Jesus died that I may live.
And thus to God all glory give.
He is worthy of all my praise.
To Him I will direct my gaze.

But Satan wants me to just quit;
Saying Jesus is not worth it.
But Jesus holds me ever close,
So thus to Satan, “adios”.

And so I’ll live my life for Him.
And not let my light ever dim.
So may I keep on standing strong.
That I may ever sing Your song.

Life

Life is fragile and delicate.
Life is valuable and precious.
Only You, Lord, can be entrusted with it.
Only Your mighty and gentle hands can handle it.
But even though these fragile shells – shells that we call a body – will eventually crack, it doesn’t mean that You are careless.
These bodies are precious, from the moment we are conceived, but there is something even more precious, that which Jesus died to save –
my soul.
That’s what’s in Your hands forever.
I hate to see shells
crack,
die
and decay
but I praise You that which is inside is perfectly safe and sound in Your mighty and gentle hands.
My life is precious.
My life is saved.
All praise be to You through Christ Jesus my Lord.
Amen.

Praying the Psalms ~ Psalm 7:1-2

Psalm 7:1–2 (ESV) ~ “O Lord my God, in you do I take refuge; save me from all my pursuers and deliver me, lest like a lion they tear my soul apart, rending it in pieces, with none to deliver.

I am not strong or smart enough to contend with those who pursue me.
I am not cunning or crafty enough to outwit them.
I am not bold or brave enough to stand up to them.
I am not able to save myself from those who would oppose you and thus me.
Save me, oh God, save me.
Many attack what I hold dear.
They speak against the Truth.
They accuse me.
Like a lion they are ferocious and merciless. Nothing of this world can shield me. Nothing and no one can defend me.
On my own I am lost,
defeated,
crushed,
Oh God, I thank You that YOU are my fortress.
You and You alone are my defender.
You and You alone has slayed the lion, through Christ Jesus my Lord.
You are my deliverer.
You have saved me.
You are my God.
Amen!

Hope and Life

The following chalk art was created by my imaginative 6-year-old daughter. It used to adorn the sidewalk in front of our home. Knowing that the lawn sprinklers would soon wash this masterpiece away, I made sure this was digitally preserved. This artwork, from the heart of a 6-year-old, inspired the following poem. To God be the glory!

Through death to Life,
You give me hope.
Through dark to light.
I can now cope.
For the cross rises above this broken world
and life rises from within.
I now have hope and strength for through Jesus Christ
eternal life now begins.
The sun shines,
The flower blooms,
Oh Lord my God my final place is not the tomb.
And now my heart leaps for joy,
I just can not contain it.
My face radiates with love,
Something that will never quit.
So may the cross brightly shine,
A hope for the world to see.
My sins have been wiped away.
That is Your loving decree.

The One

You are the Way, the Truth and the Life.
You and only You,
You are holy and true,
You are my hope and salvation.
There are no other gods who can stand,
all have been outdone,
none can prove to be the one.
Many try to dethrone You,
but all fall short,
incomplete
impotent
Ineffective.
Only You is praise wholly due.
But the battle rages on,
my soul is conflicted.
Wolves in sheep’s clothing,
trying to pull off a big con.
I become deceived,
straying from the way.
Listening to the lies,
oh God, my soul is grieved.
Forgive and restore,
remake, for You I adore.
May it be You who I follow,
for there is no other way.
The gods of this world,
are nothing, only hollow.
So dethrone the gods I’ve crowned,
Show me again,
That Jesus, only Jesus,
is the way to truly abound.

Just the Gospel

From the sermon this morning. This can not be said enough. So I am going to just leave this right here…

My friends, through faith in Jesus Christ, your sins have been forgiven and thus you have been justified in the eyes of God. You cannot justify yourself. But your filthy rags have been removed and the white robe of righteousness has been placed on you. Jesus has personally dressed you with the wedding garment and has seated you at the banquet table. Through his death and resurrection, you have been made new. This is not from you. This is not something you can obtain through self-justification for you are unclean, dirty and filthy; always falling short of the glory of God. You are sinner. The justification that places you in God’s holy courts; His kingdom, is pure gift. It is all grace. Confess that you are a sinner and know a love like no other.

Praying the Psalms ~ Psalm 3

READ: Psalm 3. Now read it again. One more time. Alright, we’re ready. Let’s pray…

Father God,
My foes are many; those who would oppose Your ways.
They celebrate and flaunt their success; scoffing at me and saying that I have no hope.
They claim victory; boasting of their strength. They think they are in control; that they hold the upper hand.
My foes arrogantly go on their way; secure in their positions of power; strutting in confidence; smug in their ways.
Oh Lord, my God, my foes are many.
Their numbers overwhelm me.
But You, oh God, are a shield about me.
You are my fortress.
You are my army of myriads that goes before me.
You have lifted me up and secured my life.
You have never ceased to hear and answer my cry for help.
Therefore, I will never fear the hordes that oppose me.
Day and night You are my guard.
I am at peace.
Oh Lord, my God, my foes are many but You overwhelm them.
Your enemies have been defeated and thus I am victorious.
They claim salvation is theirs.
They are wrong.
Salvation is Yours and Yours alone.
Through Jesus Christ You have saved me thus may Your blessings sustain me now and forevermore.
Through Jesus Christ my Lord I pray,
Amen.