Updated 4/16/2019

Click below to listen to this powerful series today and then share the direct links to the messages with your friends and family.

Pilate’s Dilemma (Part 1 of 2) – Broadcast – Truth For Life https://www.truthforlife.org/broadcasts/2019/04/15/pilates-dilemma-part-1-of-2–/

Pilate’s Dilemma (Part 2 of 2) – Broadcast – Truth for Life

Always in God’s Hands: Day by Day in the Company of Jonathan Edwards by Dr. Owen Strachan is one of the richest parts of my day. It has become the starting point to read from the wise counsel of both Jonathan Edwards and Dr. Strachan which then leads to the Word of God to further expand on the selected scripture. On April 14, the passage was Romans 9:15 – “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”

This took me to Romans chapter 9, which was read multiple times. The richness of God’s Sovereignty and Prerogative is so beautifully conveyed by the Apostle Paul. Notice in vs. 21-23 “Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory—”

Have you ever used a potter’s wheel? I took a class years ago and it takes great patience and skill to create works of art. I can’t tell you how many times I made mistakes and had to start over. However, God makes no mistakes. Vs 17 reminds us of Israel in captivity in Egypt when God used Pharaoh so He “might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” Many times we wonder why things are allowed to happen the way they do. We may not always see the finished work of art or understand all the processes God uses to ensure His plan is molded perfectly. But let us trust God’s word, His wisdom and His will. He is the potter and we are the clay. We are perfectly molded for God’s glory.

What happens when we believe a lie about God’s character and what He thinks about us? Our whole life can take a wrong turn which can lead to eternal damnation.

The best example is in the beginning… in the book of Genesis. The serpent had a conversation with Eve and he lied about what God said through a question – “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” (Gen 3.1 ESV). The serpent is questioning God’s Word. Of course the power behind the serpent is Lucifer, the angel who coveted God, wanting to be God, and God kicked him out of Heaven.

The serpent used a deceptive question in order to get Eve to question God. The serpent manipulated Eve. And in her questioning of God, she added to what God had commanded. By adding to what God said, she lied about what God said. When Adam sins, He goes on to blame God for “the woman whom you gave to be with me…” (Gen 3: 12 ESV) when he chose to disobey God by eating of the fruit. He blames both God and Eve for his actions! But notice that in the story, the serpent was tempting Eve to covet being like God. Was this not the same action that caused Lucifer to fall? Of course. He is a master with this MO. Keep reading that story in Genesis as it begins to unfold the redemptive plan of our Sovereign God.

In a prior post about Jesus being freedom, I remember being presented with a deceptive question at a young age – “you wouldn’t have these feelings about guys if God didn’t make you that way, would you?” I kept pondering that question instead of accepting the truth that God did not make me homosexual. But focusing on this deceptive question, I ended up accepting a lie about how God had made me. I believed that I was born gay. And I lived that life for 27 years. Lady Gaga sings that lie in one of her songs; catchy tune, but a lie nonetheless. In the fall of 2018, God’s Grace broke that lie in my life and set me free through His Son Jesus Christ. God showed me in His Word (the Bible) that homosexuality is a sinful counterfeit to His plan. God is very clear about His creation’s purpose. Homosexuality is nothing more than sin that covets God’s design. And that particular sin God calls an abomination (Lev 18:22). Pastor Voddie Baucham provides one of the best overviews of this issue in his sermon where he unlocks the mysteries of Genesis.

It only matters what God Thinks (Gen 1:31). Not what I think or what anyone else thinks. No matter what sin we face, we MUST accept what God says. It only matters what God Thinks! I hope we are getting the hint now — It only matters what God Thinks!

And yes – God does free people from Homosexuality. I’m free. After 27 years. I had a partner for 17 of those years. But God’s Grace is MORE powerful than any sin. You can “change” because your heart and mind was turned to darkness. But when you are made free, your heart and mind is also free! And you no longer want to do the things you used to do.

See what happens when you believe a lie about God: 

Romans 1: 18-32 (ESV)

God’s Wrath on Unrighteousness

18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,g in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.21For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

24Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

26For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.

See what happens when you believe God (verse 11):

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (ESV)

9Or do you not know that the unrighteousb will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,c 10nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

See Romans 10

Romans 10:9-12

9because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Revelations 4 and 5 are 2 chapters that show the splendor and glory of heaven and the angels and God on the Throne, with all the saints around and Jesus who is the only one worthy to open the seven seals. But in the end in Rev 20:11-15 we see just a few verses, a footnote really, of those who rejected Christ. Those who did not repent and follow Jesus face God and He judges, casting them into the Lake of Fire. 4 small verses. Never to be remembered. Forever separate from God. God created us for His Glory. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. The homosexual life is not His plan and is a sinful counterfeit to how He designed us.

There is hope. And the only Hope is found in Jesus. You just have to stop believing the lie that will condemn you and believe the One who will Save you.

As Christians, we are still going to be tempted daily. That is a fact. But we are no longer slaves to sin. Sin no longer has a hold on us. (Rom 6) Homosexuality is a sin like any other sexual sin. And it no longer has a hold on me because Jesus has freed me. There are some that claim you cannot change. By yourself you can’t (see the above scripture) – with Jesus you can! I’ve seen several articles where former active homosexuals go by the term SSA Christian and just don’t “act out” and remain pure.  I’ve been asked if that is a term I use and that answer is NO. In fact, I despise that term. SSA is a term used for “same-sex attracted”. When you are saved you are saved 100% by Jesus. Jesus has CHANGED my life and He has given me new desires and taken old ones away. That OLD life is gone. The reason I hate that term is it STILL tries to accept a lie about God’s design. It takes the focus off the finished work of Christ. Either believe what God says or don’t. But get off the fence. I choose to trust what God says. He is God after all. When you are a Christian you do not need an adjective of prior sin describing your Christian walk. When Jesus saves, He saves 100%. I also believe you limit your future blessing by keeping one foot in the “SSA” term camp.

As a Christian, keeping our minds guarded is paramount. We must focus on what God says is true because God IS TRUTH (John 14:6) and only God can bring us Life. We must continually renew our minds.

Remember: You are what God thinks. Not what you think.

Recently, I’ve come across a sermon by Pastor Levi Lusko of Fresh Life Church called Baby Monsters. He goes into several examples of how sin starts out small but it takes hold and grows big. We think we can control it but we are fooling ourselves.

No matter what lies our enemy brings to us in questions, in conversation, in social media, with LGBTQ+ organizations, the Human Rights Campaign and their heretical conversation with Christians campaign, or other sources, we MUST remember that God IS TRUTH and He cannot lie. In God alone is our hope (John 14:6, Heb 6:18, Psalm 62).

I Declare War Book Poster

I Declare War book image used with permission of Fresh Life Church. I rotate this image as my phone’s lock screen and wallpaper. By doing so, each time I look at my phone I am reminded of how precious I am to God. And His Truth is the Only Truth that matters. You may want to do the same. Guard your mind by meditating on His Word day and night. Spend time throughout the day in prayer seeking His face. Other wallpapers I use come from Truth for Life. Keep Jesus front and center.

In closing – let’s say it ONE more time: You are what God thinks. Not what you think.

God bless you.

*This entry has been updated from the original post on 23 Feb 2019.

Matthew 11:28-30 English Standard Version (ESV)

28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”