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Thanksgiving

“…because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.” Romans 1:21

We are a week away from Thanksgiving. For some time now Thanksgiving has been perhaps my favorite Holiday. The reason for this is because of its purpose. We set aside an entire day for the purpose of being thankful. I saw a sign on a church marquee this last week that I thought was truly great. “Thanksgiving is not just a day, it is a lifestyle.” If there is one thing that should exemplify the life of a Christian it is an attitude of thankfulness.

How important is thankfulness? Well in Romans 1 the Apostle Paul gives one of his more well known discourses on the problem that man faces. In Romans 1 we see this large list of sins that are evidence of man’s hostility toward God. The entire last section of the Chapter is a listing of the many evils and wicked acts that men do which further drive them away from the glory of God. The amazing thing about this though is what the cause of this alienation is.
Romans 1 tells us plainly that all men everywhere know who God is and what His invisible attributes are, and yet man in his pride refuses to honor and glorify God and almost in passing Paul tells us that they refuse to give him thanks. The great cause of sin and wickedness in the world is a lack of thankfulness. Everything we are and everything we have is a direct result of the benevolence and kindness of God, and yet the natural tendency of man is to want to glory in ourselves, and in doing this we alienate ourselves from God.

Paul tells us that this lack of acknowledgement of God and this refusal to give thanks causes man to grow futile in all his thoughts. A life that does not revolve around thankfulness to God is a life of futility. Today there are so many ideas that are considered wise in the eyes of the world that the Scripture clearly calls futility. The primary reason for this is that man is in general a most un-thankful creature.

The result of this un-thankfulness is a mind that continues in hostility with God. The way Paul discusses it in this passage is by telling us that their foolish hearts are darkened. Futility of thought is sadly far to prevalent. Men profess themselves wise, and all the while they are fools. Ultimately this delusion comes back to man’s lack of thankfulness.

So this coming Thursday when the Turkey is being carved and the family is gathered around the table make sure that your thankfulness is not merely an event for that day alone. Resolve to have a heart of thankfulness in everything you do. A thankful heart is a heart that acknowledges God and all that God has done, and it is also the heart that recognizes that God is in control and He will lead us exactly where we need to be.

Post Election Thoughts

November 8th seems like yesterday. It was a truly glorious day. The election results poured in throughout the day and as the night went on it became more and more obvious that a huge change was sweeping over the nation. The Clinton agenda suddenly had a huge wrench thrown into it. Republicans were celebrating, and Democrats were weeping and I was ecstatic, because finally things were going to change.

Well, November 8th was not yesterday, I am speaking about November 8th, 1994. For the first time in 40 years the Republicans had taken control of the House of Representatives, and pushed back against the heavy handedness of Bill Clinton’s first couple of years in office. Newt Gingrich came up with an idea and a plan, or as we know it the Contract for America and a sense of disgust with the status quo dominated the election cycle and the Republicans picked up 54 House Seats and 9 Senate Seats, and created a change in tone for then President Bill Clinton.

Sadly, Bill Clinton learned a lesson from that early setback, and the GOP did not. The GOP found themselves in a position of authority over the Congress, and rather than put a halt to the corruption and scandal that resides where power sits they adopted it and made it their own. Very quickly they betrayed the people who had put them in these positions of authority and there was no way to tell the difference between them and the people they replaced.

What I remember most about this 1994 election was how excited I was at the prospects of things improving, but like many others I found myself distraught and disgusted with business as usual politics. This repeated itself in the 2000 Presidential Election when the whole nation was brought to its knees in the long Bush v. Gore ordeal. And I will admit, I slept less during those nights than normal, because I was deeply concerned with the outcome. But then it ended, and my man was at the helm, and of course things were going to change…but once again nothing changed.

Psalms 146 gives us a much more Biblical outlook on how we should view these elections:

1 Praise the LORD!
Praise the LORD, O my soul!
2 While I live I will praise the LORD;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
3 Do not put your trust in princes,
Nor in a son of man, in whom there is no help.
4 His spirit departs, he returns to his earth;
In that very day his plans perish.
5 Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help,
Whose hope is in the LORD his God,
6 Who made heaven and earth,
The sea, and all that is in them;
Who keeps truth forever,
7 Who executes justice for the oppressed,
Who gives food to the hungry.
The LORD gives freedom to the prisoners.
8 The LORD opens the eyes of the blind;
The LORD raises those who are bowed down;
The LORD loves the righteous.
9 The LORD watches over the strangers;
He relieves the fatherless and widow;
But the way of the wicked He turns upside down.
10 The LORD shall reign forever—
Your God, O Zion, to all generations.
Praise the LORD!

Trump, Clinton, The GOP, the Democratic Party are all temporal institutions, and while we should remember our duty to pray for these individuals and leaders that they would rule wisely and rule well in the fear of the Lord, we must never place our trust in these men, or these institutions. It is the Lord who rules and reigns, and His Kingdom is a Kingdom whose increase will know no end.

So yes, rejoice if your candidate was victorious bask in the glory of the victory, but remember their plans perish with them. Go ahead and mourn and lose a little sleep when your guy or your gal loses, but remember this, if your trust is in the plans, policies or person at the head of the ticket rather than in the Lord God who made heaven and earth, you are just going to repeat this cycle again and again. Learn to put your trust in the Lord who reigns forever and ever.

Praise the Lord.

Christian Interventionism

Doctrine of the Lesser MagistratesThere is an interesting story in the news right now out of the State of Kentucky.  The Rowan County Clerk, Kim Davis, who objects to gay marriage for religious reasons, asked the U.S.  Supreme Court on Friday to grant her “asylum for her conscience.”  Since the Supreme Court ruling in the Obergefell case Davis stopped issuing all marriage licenses.  Two gay couples and two straight couples sued her, arguing that she must fulfill her duties as an elected official despite her personal Christian conviction. A federal judge ordered Davis to issue the licenses and an appeals court upheld that decision.

County Clerk Davis, however,   has continued to hold firm and will not issue the marriage licenses.  Her attorney, Jonathan D. Christman, with the Christian law firm Liberty Counsel, wrote the court. He compared it to forcing a person who objects to war into the battlefield, or forcing a person who opposes capital punishment to carry out an execution.

“That searing act of personal validation would forever, and irreversibly, echo in her conscience — and, if it happened, there is no absolution or correction that any earthly court can provide to rectify it.”

Now I do not know how this case will turn out.  I have my suspicions and I am not optimistic, but there are a few things I find interesting.

First, there are some who think Clerk Davis should just resign, well, she is not going to do that.  Davis has said she will not resign from her $80,000-a-year job, and vowed that she will never license a same-sex marriage. She has turned couples away for two months, in defiance of a series of court orders.  She can’t be fired because she is an elected official.  The only thing that can be done to remove her is to impeach her.  Well, that is probably not going to happen, because the majority of the legislature in her state agree with her.  Last week the Republican Head of the Senate spoke at a rally in her defense.

Pastor Toby Sumpter prayed that God would give us thousands more men and women with courage and conviction like this.  I have to echo this prayer.  Davis is doing nothing more than putting into practice the Christian Doctrine  of the Lesser Magistrate.  One of the issues that confronts us as we enter into an America of ever increasing tyranny is what can we do? Are unjust or immoral actions by the government simply to be accepted and their lawless commands obeyed?

I know this kind of action troubles some of you, but I would like to recommend a great little book on the subject.  Matthew Trewhella’s “The Doctrine of the Lesser Magistrates.”

https://lessermagistrate.com/lesser-magistrates-book/

Pastor Trewhella shows how Americans can successfully resist the Federal government’s attempts to trample our Constitution, assault our liberty, and impugn the law of God. The doctrine of the lesser magistrates declares that when the superior or higher civil authority makes an unjust/immoral law or decree, the lesser or lower ranking civil authority has both the right and duty to refuse obedience to that superior authority. If necessary, the lower authority may even actively resist the superior authority. Historically, this doctrine was practiced before the time of Christ and Christianity. It was Christian men, however, who formalized and embedded it into their political institutions throughout Western Civilization.

Sadly most Christians know nothing about proper Christian resistance.  We need to keep County Clerk Davis in our prayers and pray that God would show us mercy by raising up many more like her!  May God have mercy on our nation.

 

Affirming Sin!

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Deception is the greatest tool of the devil.   Revelation 12 describes the Great Red Dragon who deceives the entire world.   We know this initial deception was the one that took place in the Garden in Genesis 3.   But the devil continues his attempts at deception even today.   What is truly despicable though is how little it seems he has to work to do so.   We live in a day where man is all too eager to allow himself to be deceived by lies.   The truth can be staring a person in the face and they will cling to a lie no matter how absurd.

A recent example of this is the recent story in the news titled:  Growing Number of California Churches Believe Homosexuality not Sinful.   According to the article “More than 800 Christian churches in California affirm and support gay members, a number that has risen 50 percent since 2005, according to the latest survey from gaychurch.org.”  The deception that is involved in this story is a pretty clear example of a self inflicted wound.

The Bible is not very ambiguous when it comes to the issue of Homosexuality. There are many who would like to make it seem as though it is, but there is not one iota of evidence that the Bible anywhere encourages, supports or affirms homosexual behavior.   1 Corinthians 6 is absolute in its affirming that homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.

Gaychurch.org is the organization that is the source of this information.  I decided to visit their site, and read some of their material.   One of the pages that can be linked to is a page called “Homosexuality and the Bible.”   A question they ask on that page is “Are Homosexuals condemned to Hell?”  This question is one of those questions that is important to ask, however, the answer that is given shows a complete lack of understanding of the way that God’s grace works.   Let me explain:

The following is an excerpt from the article titled “Are Homosexuals condemned to Hell?”

When I was “coming out,” most in the church believed that homosexuals were condemned to Hell. Because of this, I too struggled with this concept and wondered if my very salvation was in peril. After all, I had no one else telling me anything different. My heart was telling me that God loved me ‘just as I am’ yet the Church was telling me something entirely different. Which was right?

Not wanting to lose my salvation over my sexual orientation, I started my journey here to find God’s truth and will for my life. Aware that my own biases would probably cloud my judgment, I decided to start my search using the worst possible scenario. That being the premise that the “anti-gay” contingent was correct and that homosexuals were destined for Hell. If I could find any way to Scripturally back this premise, then I had determined in my mind that I would accept this as the truth. After all the weight of the Church stood behind this idea and I surely didn’t want to risk my relationship with God. No matter the personal cost.

After much thought, I came up with only two possible scenarios that would support this notion.  The first is that salvation is reserved for a select group of people, and that homosexuals are somehow excluded from this group. The second possibility is that homosexuality is such a terrible and perverse sin that salvation is beyond our grasp. On the flip side, if neither of ideas could stand up to Biblical scrutiny, then there is nothing left to support the notion that salvation hasn’t been extended to everyone – including the gay community!

OK, before answering this answer I would like to quote a Bible verse.   1 Corinthians 6:9-11 reads:

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.  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.

Clearly from this passage we can see that Homosexuals are excluded from the Kingdom of God.  However, and this is critically important, so too are fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, thieves, coveters, drunkards, etc…What is so different about the way the Gaychurch.org crowd is going about their argument is they are pretending that one can have a relationship with God and yet not have God change their life.

Read the following statement and see that I have made it not about homosexuality but about being a thief, and see if it makes any sense at all.

When I was “coming out,” most in the church believed that thieves were condemned to Hell. Because of this, I too struggled with this concept and wondered if my very salvation was in peril. After all, I had no one else telling me anything different. My heart was telling me that God loved me ‘just as I am’ yet the Church was telling me something entirely different. Which was right?

Not wanting to lose my salvation over my kleptomania, I started my journey here to find God’s truth and will for my life. Aware that my own biases would probably cloud my judgment, I decided to start my search using the worst possible scenario. That being the premise that the “anti-theft” contingent was correct and that thieves were destined for Hell. If I could find any way to Scripturally back this premise, then I had determined in my mind that I would accept this as the truth. After all the weight of the Church stood behind this idea and I surely didn’t want to risk my relationship with God. No matter the personal cost.

After much thought, I came up with only two possible scenarios that would support this notion.  The first is that salvation is reserved for a select group of people, and that thieves are somehow excluded from this group. The second possibility is that thievery is such a terrible and perverse sin that salvation is beyond our grasp. On the flip side, if neither of ideas could stand up to Biblical scrutiny, then there is nothing left to support the notion that salvation hasn’t been extended to everyone – including the thieving community!

This argument is ridiculous.   Of course, stealing is a wicked and a perverse sin.   No one expects that a person will continue to steal once he has been saved.  But for some reason, the homosexual denies the power of God’s grace.  They want to proclaim that God changes lives, but they don’t believe in the actual change.

Do we affirm thieves?  Do we affirm adulterers?  What about liars and drunks?   No, or at least we shouldn’t.  We should call them to the cross of Christ where they set aside those besetting sins and call them to look to Jesus.   One of the problems of the Affirming movement is they believe that people are identified by their sin.   To identify yourself by your sin is to completely miss the idea of the Grace of God.

1 Corinthians 6 begins with the command to be not deceived? Well, any movement that attempts to affirm people in their sin, rather than in the grace of God is using the devils playbook. They are engaging in the worst kind of deceit. The deceit that claims that God didn’t really say exactly what God said. This “Affirming Movement,” has exchanged the truth of the Word of God for a lie, and they have done it in such a way that actually attacks and slanders the true Church of Jesus Christ. Our friends and family members who have been ensnared by the Sin of Homosexuality do need our compassion, however, what they do not need is a lie that pretends to be sanctioned by God.

Homosexuality is a sin, but Jesus came to forgive sinners. Jesus told the woman caught in the very act of adultery to go and sin no more. Her past was a life of adultery. Her future was identified by who she was in Christ. Don’t be deceived into allowing the lies of the affirming sin movement to rob you of the glorious future that Christ has for those who are His.

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Israel or Jesus!

Israel and AbortionA recent news story gives a good example of what is wrong with much of the theology of today’s church.  Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz (“The Land”) reports:

Israel will pay for abortions for women aged    20 to 33 regardless of circumstance starting next year, health officials said Monday, adding that they hope to make eligibility for state funding universal in the future….
    The new rule opens it up for 6,300 more women to have a state-funded abortion next year, at a cost of about 16 million shekels ($4.6 million). The cost of all state-subsidized abortions is estimated at 24 million shekels a year.

Most Evangelicals rightly decry the sin of abortion. It is clearly one of the most pernicious evils of our day. However, most evangelicals also misidentify the recipients of the blessings of God according to His covenant. We all know that God promises blessings to those who bless the seed of Abraham, and curses to those who curse that seed. The Apostle Paul in no uncertain terms tells us who that seed is in Galatians 3:16:

Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as of many, but as of one, “And to your Seed,” who is Christ.

The Seed of Abraham is Jesus Christ.  Blessing and cursing come upon a people based on how they relate to Jesus Christ.  A reading of the Bible makes this clear. Nations and institutions and people are all blessed or judged based upon how they regard Christ.

In Matthew 25:40 Jesus said:
‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

Modern evangelicals have kind of a theological dilemma because of this latest story. Do they stand for the babies, the least of these, or do they stand for the “chosen nation” that is killing them?  True, this is not a problem unique to Israel. America is possibly even more guilty, but most American Evangelicals don’t claim, at least verbally, that blessing and judgment come from how we treat America.

1 Peter 2:9-10 says of those who are in Christ,

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.”

The seed of Abraham is Christ, and all those who belong to Christ. Blessing and judgment come from how we regard Christ. The Church of Jesus Christ must cry out against the sin of abortion, no matter where it takes place.

Ducks, Homosexuals, and Cowards!

phil-robertson-p11 Well, the Duck Dynasty issue has certainly grabbed a hold of the interest of a lot of people. Some have called it a free speech issue, and I guess to some degree that is accurate, but far more important than free speech, this seems to me to be an issue of the credibility of the Word of God.

If you are not aware, Phil Robertson said something so shocking that the A&E Network suspended him. What was the shocking and unbelievably crass thing that Phil Robertson said that got him in so much trouble? Well this Huffington Post Headline summarizes the issue better than anything I have read on it. “’Duck Dynasty’ Star Phil Robertson Makes Anti-Gay Remarks, Says Being Gay Is A Sin.”

What is Shocking and unbelievable is that anyone who has ever read their Bible could possibly think otherwise. News flash – Adultery is a sin. Is this shocking? No. Murder is a sin. Again there is no shock and awe when the obvious is stated. Then again, adultery and murder are not sacraments of Modern American Christianity.

I have dealt with the issue in the past, but the fact that Homosexuality is a sin, is irrefutable. Is it a far worse sin than the many other sins that haunt the American Church? No. But, It is the only one that attempts to justify it and make it o.k. by creating special interest groups.

If you have a friend who is involved in the sin of adultery and you tell this friend to repent and come back to Christ are you accused of hating him? Maybe sometimes, but all Christians are aware that to call some one back from danger and to tell them to repent is not hatred, in fact it is the only loving thing a person can do.

Homosexuality, at least the way it is treated in today’s church, seems to be the exception to this rule. If you tell someone there is healing in Jesus, and that Jesus forgives even homosexuality well, that is just being a hater and being judgmental. So rather than risk offending the person we coddle them. We patronize them and contrary to all Scripture, we tell them that Homosexuality is different. God made you that way after all. Well, to say that is to run contrary to the teaching of the Word of God.

One of the quotes that people are dredging up to demonize Phil Robertson is the following: “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.” Apparently this quote is so off the chain, because Phil is judging who goes to heaven and who does not. Well, l hate to shock people, but other than maybe a Louisiana slant to the passage this quote is from the Bible. It is from Paul’s letter to the Church at Corinth where he warns them to not be deceived. You see Corinth had a lot of the same problems we have in the Church today. They prided themselves on their open and accepting ways, and Paul let them know that what they were doing was practicing a wicked type of self deception.

Please note, Phil, quoting Paul, did not only condemn the homosexuals, he condemned the greedy, the idolatrous, and the adulterers. Why is it that we don’t have special interest groups clamoring around Adulterers of the World? Well I definitely have my theories, but let me say it plainly. Phil Robertson Is a Christian man who has flaws, but he also loves people enough to tell them the truth even if it costs him. The accusation that when a person speaks the Word of God without apologies is that his speech is hateful. How hateful? I saw Phil being linked with the likes of Hitler for his statements today. I know, we Americans love to engage in hyperbole. but what is amazing is so called Christian people are coming down on Phil for quoting the Bible and they are comparing him to Adolph Hitler. Be careful what you get angry at.

I guess it you are the so called victims in a society you can get away with making wicked comparisons. Well Christians, Jesus said if the world hated him they would hate you as well. Does the world swoon over your every word or are you hated for the sake of Christ’s words?

Speak up for truth and it is likely you won’t be invited to certain functions. But Jesus said if you were ashamed of Him before men, he would be ashamed of you before His Father.

I am glad that Phil Robertson is not ashamed of the Word of God.  I am also pleased that he loves people enough to proclaim God’s Word without reservation. even when it is about issues that some people consider off limits. In doing this he is being accused of being a bigot and an unloving person. I say what he is doing is putting love to action. To quote the Word of God is not too hate. The most pathetic people in this contest are the ones who claim the name of Christ but are not willing to follow its commands. They are nothing more than pretenders and cowards. They claim to love, but by their actions they show themselves to be nothing more than cowards and wimps.

Revelation 21:7-8 says that “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son. 8 But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

All of the sexually immoral will take part in this second death. Phil Robertson unashamedly proclaims this when he quotes Paul in 1 Corinthians. It is common today to leave the homosexuals off this list, after all, how can you judge someone for who they love? Well, if the Bible is your standard, you will realize that is not the question. The question is why are you apologizing for or “correcting” God’s Word? The answer is that you are either an unbeliever or a coward, and if you read the above passage you will realize that your fate is the same.

May we all be given a strong dose of the courage of Phil Robertson, along with the love of our fellow man to show them that Jesus Saves from all sin.

God’s Leader 2012

“It is high time that pastors awaken to their calling, their position of rulership and authority. If the civil magistrates will not obey God, the spiritual magistrates must step in and do the job. God has not left his people leaderless. God has not left his people without direction. We must not depend upon the ungodly to lead us into holiness, righteousness and justice. God’s people are looking to God’s men for leadership and direction. Will they find it?

Our problem is that we have denied the fact that pastors have the authority to rule under God and to act under God. We have sat idly by and allowed the wicked and the ungodly to steal our land, our country and our freedom. We need not look for them to merely give it back. No, it must be taken back on God’s terms and in conformity to His Word. If a revival or awakening takes place in this country, it will begin when pastors realize their calling, position and responsibility before God.

The President of the United States should have the courage and the intestinal fortitude to lead this country back to biblical standards. He is the highest civil magistrate. It is his responsibility. If he will not do so, then the vice president ought to lead the way. If he refuses, the speaker of the house should do so. If he will not, then our congressmen should. If they refuse, then it reverts to the individual states. The governor should lead the reform. If he will not, the lieutenant governor should. If he will not, the speaker of the house should. If he will not, the state congressmen should. If they will not, the judges should, from the supreme court judges down to the lowliest probate judge. If they refuse, where are the city councilmen and aldermen? Why go down the line? Because a lesser magistrate is just as responsible to obey God as a higher magistrate.

If none of our civil magistrates have the courage, conviction and the integrity to lead us back to God, then, blessed be God, the spiritual magistrates, the pastors, must step in and say, “FOLLOW ME, THIS IS THE WAY, WALK YE IN IT!” We must not have anarchy. We must align our-selves with a godly leader and stand for truth with him. May God give us men like Moses, Phinehas, Jehoiada, James Caldwell and Peter Mulenburg.”

The Christian and Civil Government

John Weaver

God’s Kingdom

One of the things that is a major problem in the American Church today is the way we too often read the Bible.   Because of our history and our background we carry certain assumptions into our reading that of necessity color the way in which we read  Scripture.   A prime example of this is the way many modern readers of Scripture deal with the topic of the Kingdom of God.

The Kingdom of God is discussed in the Gospels as much as any other topic.   Jesus was all about the Kingdom of God.   And He spoke about it not as something that was primarily future, but something that had arrived.   His audience  very often misunderstand what He was talking about.  They were expecting an all together different kind of kingdom than the one that Jesus brought about.  But as He said then, His kingdom was not of this world.  The Kingdom of Heaven was not to be like the kingdoms of this world.   It was instituted differently, it manifests itself differently, and it is not governed in the way other Kingdoms are governed.

The primary objection I hear in this regard is from people who say, “Christ can’t be reigning, just look around.”   And I will admit, if I looked around and I did not have any Scriptural promises to lean on, I could see that things might look bleak, but the Bible does not tell us the story of Kingdom as though it will just instantly appear and all rivals will be immediately snuffed out.

In Psalms 110 we read, “YVWH said to my Lord,“Sit at My right hand,Until I make Your enemies Your footstool.”  In this glorious passage  the enthroned Christ  is seated at the right hand of His Father, for a period of time.  This period ends  when  all of His enemies will be made His footstool.  According to 1 Corinthians 15, He must reign, until His last enemy is defeated.   This is what is happening right now.   Christ sits enthroned at the right hand of the Father on high.  He has triumphed, and now the world is being subdued underneath His feet.

You know as bad as things may look from time to time the Kingdom of God is still greater today than it was yesterday.   In Isaiah we read that “Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end.”   The Kingdom as presented in the Bible is one that grows.  It starts small and eventually it subdues the entire world.   And rather than subduing through swords, and spears, it grows through very different weapons.