Category Archives: Preaching

We’re Only Human (but we’re called to be holy)

Dr. Anthony and Valerie Baker

For many years I was under the impression that pastors were closer to God than the rest of us church goers. My father, already my hero, was a pastor, so thinking that way probably came naturally.

However, over the past few decades of ministry I’ve come to realize there is very little in the average pastor that’s different from anyone else. We have our times of frustration, moments of self-doubt, and occasionally mess up. We don’t have all the answers, nor do we know all the questions to ask. We are only human. 

Yet, what is true for the pastor is true for everyone; we are called to be holy. In 1 Peter 1:16 we read, “…be ye holy, for I am holy.” This is impossible, of course, without Jesus Christ living within us. He not only makes us holy (set apart) by giving us His life, but His life lived through us makes us more and more like Him. The new life we have in Jesus, living and working through us, along with our obedience to the Word of God, not only sets us apart from the world; it makes us capable of reaching the world!

This week someone asked me, “How do you preach?” “Well, I don’t scream hell fire and damnation, if that’s what you mean,” I replied. “However, I call sin what it is when I need to,” I continued. “But the big difference is that I try to preach like I’m the one sitting in the pew.”

Look, if you think I look down from the pulpit with a holier-than-thou attitude, trust me, I don’t. As a matter of fact, it is only by the grace of God that I am where I am. He has called me and gifted me for a specific role, but that doesn’t make me a better person, only one whose house is made of glass (figuratively, of course). Just ask my wife and daughters.

No, because I’m a sinner saved by grace, the call to be “holy as I am holy” is as convicting to me when I preach it as when I’m in the pew on the receiving end. The difference between the congregation and myself, as with any pastor, is that I have been given the responsibility to share the message faithfully and boldly. God is holding me accountable.

This Sunday don’t think of your pastor as a man who’s “preaching” at you; think of him as a fellow servant of God trying to complete the task before him with faithfulness to the message, even if it preaches at him.

He probably needs it.

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Filed under Bethlehem Baptist Church, ministry, Preaching

“My Dad Can Beat Up Your Dad” – a sermon

The following sermon was preached at Bethlehem Baptist, Warthen, GA, on Father’s Day, 2022.

Welcome and Intro

Good morning and happy Father’s Day!

Thankful to Be a Father

I can’t speak for anyone else, but I just want to say that I am thankful to be a father, and I’m so thankful that God gave me a good father on earth. My earthly father has gone on to be with the Lord, so I can’t introduce you to him. But if I could…my goodness, I am sure you would love him!

But today, I’m not going to reminisce about my earthly dad. Today’s gonna be about my Abba Father, God. …Opening Prayer

You know, I am so grateful that the Lord made me a dad. He gave me 3 beautiful daughters, two of which are here today…

But being a father has helped me to better understand, even if just by a little bit, the sacrifice that God made when He allowed His Son, Jesus, to be crucified.

Before I was a dad, it was impossible for me to understand a father’s heart. Therefore, it was impossible for me to understand the feeling of one of your children disobeying. It was impossible for me to understand what it feels like when children break your heart. It was impossible to understand the pain of having to discipline.

I was the type who would say “My children will NEVER do that” … or something like, “If my kid ever talked to me like that, well, I’d…” Then my daughters came along… That kind of changed things. Parenting is a lot different in person!

Being Tuff!

But when my girls were young, it was my responsibility to convince them that I was tough and could beat up anybody, particularly anyone they might date. As a matter of fact, for a long time I had the stipulation that before I’d give them away to some punk, I’d have to spar – fight – with the guy, first.

I don’t know how seriously they took me, but I do know that at least Katie told a few guys about it.

But let me tell you, I wasn’t joking! I felt like, if nothing else, it would be good to see what kind of guy would be watching over them when I wasn’t around. I guess the only reason Gus and I never sparred was because, “I pitied the fool!

I mean, he’s such a nice, caring, loving young man – why would I risk hurting him and scaring away the best offer she got?

But the whole reason I’m saying this is not because I want to talk about how tough I am… or what kind of award-winning fighter I was… how many boards I could break… how many people I sent away in tears …

NO! I brought all this up so that I could [dovetail] into a real “tough father comparison,” the kind we all experienced at some point when we were children…

“My dad can beat up your dad!”

There was the story of three boys talking about how talented their dads were. The first boy said, “My dad just wrote a few words on a piece of paper, sent it away, then somebody sent him $20 for it – they called it a poem.”

To that the second boy replied, “Oh, really? Well, my dad wrote 100 words, and somebody paid him $50 for it. They called it a story.”

A third boy heard all this and spoke up. “If you think that’s something, my dad’s got both your dad’s beat. He wrote some words down on a single sheet of paper and read it in church. It took 6 men to collect all the money.”

How many times did you ever get into something like that? It could’ve been that your dad was bigger, tougher, richer, smarter, faster, stronger, or whatever. Or, if you missed out on it as a kid, maybe you grew up and played the same game with other adults – my child is smarter than yours, or my child is more popular than yours.

Well, whether you played that game when you were young or not, that’s EXACTLY what we are going to be doing today!

Did you know that everybody has a father? I’m not talking about a man here on Earth – I’m talking about a different kind of father, a SPIRITUAL FATHER…one you are bound to take after, regardless.

I’d like us first to look at 3 different passages.

  • Galatians 4:6 – And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
  • Ephesians 1:2-3 – Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
  • 1 John 2:1 – My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

Now, let’s look at the words of Jesus in John 8:44…

  • John 8:44 – Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Everybody in this world has a father, and it’s either God or Satan. There are no other choices. You are either a child of God, or you’re a child of the Devil. You have either been born again and adopted into the family of God, OR you are still lost without Christ, a stranger and an enemy of God.

Now, I get it…some people don’t like their fathers and refuse to acknowledge them. For example, you might be unsaved, still lost, still bound for a sinner’s hell, but you say, Preacher, I’m not like my daddy the Devil. No, God is not my Father, but I’m still a good person!

My daddy (the Devil) has a horrible reputation: he

  • hurts people,
  • destroys lives,
  • lies, swindles, steals,
  • causes illness, abuses women, kills babies,
  • gets people hooked on drugs, starts wars, and all kinds of stuff… but NOT ME! I’m nothing like him!

But what did Jesus say in John 8:44? You are “of your father the devil, and the lust of your father you will do.” As long as you remain in Satan’s family, you are going to be like him.

But you know what, no matter how bad a person can be, there’s always gonna be somebody who defends them. It’s like, “I know my son robbed that liquor store, but he’s a good kid! He didn’t deserve to get shot!

And no matter how bad a father can be to his children, there are still going to be those who want to play the “my dad can beat up your dad” game.

The World ain’t no different.

So, let’s go there!

“Preacher, your Abba Daddy ain’t nothin’! My daddy can beat up your Father any day of eternity!”

Really? Is that so?

Yeah! And I can prove it, too! Even from your so-called Bible.

Really?? OK, then, prove it! Tell us how BIG and BAD your daddy is.

Well, 1st of all, He waged war in Heaven! He took a third of all the angels away with him, then he destroyed God’s perfect little paradise on Earth and got his first perfect people to sin.

Now, he is so powerful that he commands those angels (demons) to make people do whatever he wants, like possess people…

  • Matthew 8:28 KJV – And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

He possesses people all the time. And when he does, he can make them hurt themselves, cut themselves, have convulsions, blind them, or simply make them crazy.

He destroys marriages, breaks hearts of parents, starves children, makes leaders greedy, and talks millions of people your Father loves into suicide.

Ever heard of slavery, genocide, torture, poison, pornography, rape, abuse, murder, human trafficking, concentration camps, war? All my daddy’s ideas!

He can also influence nations, fix elections, and offer every kind of pleasure you can think of. He even offered Jesus prestige and power – He could have been ruler of the world! – if He would have only worshipped him.

Yeah, preacher man, I’d say my dad could beat up your weak, harp-playing, cheek-turning, wuss of a Father. For crying out loud, He couldn’t even stop humans from killing his Son! What a loser!

What would you say to that? I think I’d say something like this…

I’ve got to admit, Beelzebubba, that’s pretty impressive. I mean, seriously, if I were nothing more than a fool, I’d be convinced your daddy is invincible. He sounds scary, that’s for sure.

However, I’m still confident – yes, I am persuaded – I know that I know that I know my Heavenly Father can kick your lying daddy’s rear.

As a matter of fact, it wouldn’t be the first time, and it won’t be the last!

Oh yeah?? OH, YEAH!

The Holy Comeback

First things first: Let’s start with THE BEGINNING. As Bill Cosby famously said, “I brought you into this world, I can take you out.” Your daddy wouldn’t even be here without my Daddy creating him! He even gave him his first job! It was a good one, too, but your loser dad went and messed it up when he got a big head and said, “I will ascend unto heaven, I will set my throne above the stars of God...”

What an idiot!

2nd, That war in heaven you talked about? The only reason your daddy left with a third of the angels was because he got his tail handed to him. Jesus said in Luke 10:18, “I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.”  Gotta wonder how bad that hurt.

3rd, Yeah, your dad DID contribute to Adam and Eve sinning – got to give him that. But did you know that my Daddy was always a step ahead of yours?

A long, long time before your daddy played dress up in the garden, even before time began, he knew the moves Satan would make. It’s almost like my Father could look into the future, like He had a time machine, or something…but it’s better than that! He’s not limited by time and spaceHe created it!

Now that I think about it, it’s no wonder King David wrote so many songs about my Daddy, because He is worthy to be praised! How wonderful are all His works!

You know, a long time ago, your daddy came before my daddy and accused this poor guy named Job. Your dad couldn’t stand him because he seemed so perfect, so he sorta made a bet that he could make my Father’s servant curse Him. That’s when my Daddy came up with a phrase that Clint Eastwood used: “Go ahead, make my day.

Your old man couldn’t even whip a broken down, boil-covered, poverty-stricken human! Job NEVER gave in because even he knew your daddy wasn’t worth it. LOSER!

Now, granted, Job didn’t have it easy when your dad was messing with him, so he did have a lot of questions. But that’s when my Father gave him a lesson in reality. You know what reality is, don’t you? You don’t even know what a woman is!

In the book of Job, chapters 40 and 41, we read how…

  1. He laid the foundations of the Earth
  2. He created the measurements (the standards) to measure it.
  3. He hung the foundations of the earth on nothing.
  4. He shut up the seas
  5. He can make garments from clouds and cloth out of darkness
  6. He told the waves where to stop and go no further
  7. He causes the morning – He creates each sunrise
  8. He has walked the depths of the seas
  9. He opened the gates of death and hell
  10. He knows where light goes and darkness hides when the light comes
  11. He owns the treasures of snow and hail that fall to earth
  12. He cut channels for the overflow of rain and maid paths for the lightning.
  13. He causes it to rain
  14. He can even control the effects of the constellations; or even cause them to fly apart if He wants to
  15. He can number the clouds without weather radar.


Let’s get down to it, OK? Your dad is a conniving, selfish, prideful, hateful, pervert who lies about everything, including himself.

He probably never told you that my Father has never lost a fight and NEVER will. He has prepared a place for those He loves – His family – but He’s also prepared a place for your daddy.

The Battle Won

You see, your daddy was already beaten up by my Daddy a long time ago. It was the biggest beat down the world had ever seen! It was simply beautiful!!

It went down like this… My Dad came into the world that your daddy thought he controlled and was born as a tiny, week, helpless little baby child. Then, He walked around for 33 years as an easy target, but from the time He was a baby till He was 33, your loser daddy couldn’t lay a hand on Him. Not one! Then, to make it look more of a fair fight, my daddy held open his arms and said, “Go ahead, hit me.” Your dad hit and hit and hit. He beat my Daddy so badly that people said you couldn’t even tell He was human. Then, in what seemed like a fatal move, He simply laid down for the count.

Oh, my goodness, you should have seen the celebration. Out of the whole world, only 200 or so mourned my Daddy. The rest of the world and all the evil minions of your messed up dad partied like there was no tomorrow. But the thing is, your dad fell for my Dad’s plan and took the bait. And the best part of it all was that since my Dad wrote the rules for the fight, going down for the count meant the clock started at 3 days! 3 days later my Dad snatched the keys to death, hell, and the grave out of your dad’s quivering hands and walked victorious out of the temporary holding place they called a tomb.

Don’t you get it? For what, like 4,000 years or so, your dad planned and schemed to kill my Dad. He thought he was so smart. But your dad got played, Bruh! My Daddy beat up your daddy like no daddy has ever been beat before! And guess what, He’s going to keep beating him every time he comes around!

Illustration of my earthly Dad coming to my aid at K-Mart.

Back around 1990 I went out with a girl. I only went out with her once, and she never once mentioned that she had a boyfriend at the time. Like I said, we went on one date, no more, and all we did that night was go get something to eat and walk around a park and talk (which is when I realized I didn’t want a second date).

Well, fast forward to when I was at work the next day (I worked at K-Mart). While there, the girl’s brother came up to my counter in the sporting goods section and warned me that her boyfriend was really angry and was going to come by and beat my a**. Supposedly, he was a big guy. So what did I do? I picked up the phone and called my dad – the ex-bodybuilder, weightlifter, ex-moonshiner, and reserve Sheriff’s deputy who carried a Colt .357 magnum everywhere.

Funny how that when my daddy came to where I worked and sat in the parking lot, I wasn’t afraid of some bully one bit! All I had to do was make the call.

Church, don’t run in fear from the Devil; he’s just a lying blowhard who’s already been defeated by our Father in Heaven. However, when Satan starts threatening you, remember Who’s on your side! He’s always there.

1 John 4:4 – Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Let us pray.

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Filed under Preaching

What Does the Bible Say About Homosexuality?

The following is a near word-for-word transcript of sermon I delivered this morning, June 12, 2022, at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Warthen, Georgia.


I am sure by now most of you have heard that I was going to preach on something controversial this morning. This week I asked for prayer on Facebook live, because the subject matter is so sensitive. And do you want to know why I did that? It’s because we live in a world that is full of darkness and deceit and there’s an enemy who is fighting tooth and nail, fang and claw, to keep the truth of God’s Word hidden, and he has plenty of willing accomplices. These are they who “hold (or suppress) the truth in unrighteousness,” as spoken of in Romans 1:18.

  • Romans 1:18 KJV – For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold [suppress] the truth in unrighteousness;

Over the years there have been multiple cases of companies, everything from auto makers to drug makers, who have been sued and even prosecuted for withholding critical information such as defects or dangers. Anyone remember the Ford Pinto? What about Fen Phen? A lot of people died, and a lot of people were permanently hurt because somebody didn’t want to tell the truth. Billions of dollars were paid out. Worse, thousands of lives were either lost or changed forever.

So, what does the Bible say about the Christian, the man of God, the preacher, who knows the Truth, yet, for whatever reason, suppresses it, hides it, or simply never talks about it? To what court will he or she have to answer? Let me tell you, he will stand before the Judge of the universe and give an account!

  • Jeremiah 48:10 KJV – Cursed be he that doeth the work of the LORD deceitfully, and cursed be he that keepeth back his sword from blood.

Unfortunately, there are several reasons why the truth is being withheld today; why what I’m going to preach about today is rarely addressed in public, much less from the pulpit.

  1. A lack of understanding – we are not confident in our knowledge of the subject, so we stay quiet or avoid discussion.
  2. Fear and intimidation. The threats are real.
  3. A faulty understanding of Scripture – bad theology – that attributes sainthood to the sinner without repentance and seeks unity through compromise.
  4. Sin is in the camp.

Well, let me tell you about my thoughts on those 4 points…

  1. I’ve done my homework. But that didn’t take much. I mean, one really doesn’t have to look far for evidence that men are men and women are women and that each was made for a purpose the other one was not designed for. But I’ve also gone to the Bible for answers to the lunacy running rampant in this world. And guess what, the answers are in there, so I’m ready to talk about it any time you want to drop the hat.
  2. Fear and intimidation? As President Biden so eloquently puts it, “Come on!” Who are we to fear when we are doing the will of God? Who are we to fear when we are speaking the truth? Those people we read of in the Bible were not included for our entertainment, you know; they are there for our instruction. How can we, with a good conscience, tell our children and grandchildren to be like young David, Daniel, or Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego?
    • How can we tell them to stand up to giants when we cower before lawyers and people who can’t decide which bathroom to use?
    • How can we tell them to be a Daniel and pray, even when the King says not to, even if it means the lions’ den?
    • How can we in good conscience praise Daniel’s three Hebrew friends for not bowing before Nebuchadnezzar’s golden statue if we cower to every demand to affirm idolatry?
  3. As to the third reason why Truth is withheld – a faulty view of Scripture/bad theology and a desire to affirm every delusional definition of humanity, folks, all it takes is reading more than one verse, reading them in context, and avoiding the apologetic nonsense written by former Christians who’ve now found that the forbidden fruit isn’t that bad, after all. Most bad theology can be corrected by simply reading the Bible.
  4. And then, when it comes to sin in the camp, well, I have no idea if anyone here or watching from somewhere else is guilty.

    You may be like Achan in the Old Testament who took the forbidden treasure from Jericho and hid it under his tent. If so, that’s between you and God.

    What’s more likely, however, is that you know somebody with the bad theology and the hidden sin, and you’re more invested in it than you’d like to admit. As a matter of fact, you’ve even been wondering if God condemned that sin, or not? I mean, Achan was probably a great guy and loved his family, right? What was a little disobedience? Isn’t all sin the same? What would be wrong with simply letting him be who he is? Heck, think about all the church could do if he donated a little of that forbidden gold to the church!

Church, I do not want to be guilty of withholding the truth in order to keep the government happy, the activists happy, or even the church member happy. There may be a den of lions or a fiery furnace in our future, but I’d like to be remembered like Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednigo who said, “Even if our God does not deliver us from your hand, we will not bow.”

Now, before I say anything else, I want to remind you that we are to speak the truth in love. It is not my job to condemn anyone, only to love them as Christ loves them and gave His life for them. Therefore, when I say what I’m going to say, please understand that I don’t hate anyone. All I want to do is tell you the truth, even if it hurts, even if offends, even if it makes you mad. Because, when it’s all said and done, my job is to warn you the building is about to collapse – you have to decide get out before it’s too late.

Church, we are living in a day when the very creation of Holy God is under attack. We have so many people worrying about the climate and climate change, and maybe that’s a good thing, but God didn’t just create the world – he created man, “male and female created He them.”

In Genesis 1:26 we read that God said, “Let us make man in our own image…” Man, both male and female, was made in the image of God, yet today the very definition of Man is under attack. Let me tell you, when we think we are smarter than our Creator to the point of redefining and redesigning what was made in His image, we show that what we really hate is not ourselves, but God.

Folks, this is the month of June, the month that for so long was associated with beautiful brides. Now it’s a month dedicated to Pride. And sadly, too many church people have ditched the Bride of Christ at the altar and run of with the bride of Frankenstein. Churches and whole denominations that were once known for their piety and Bible study are now ordaining practicing homosexuals, lesbians, transgenders, and even those who can’t decide. The truth is no longer being taught and preached as the image of God becomes more distorted every day.

So, then, what does the Bible say about homosexuality? I’m not asking you what CNN says. I’m not asking you what a government agency says. I am not asking you what you read on the internet or saw on TV. What does the Bible say?

Well, because this is such a complicated topic and one that deserves a lot more discussion than what I’m able to cover today, I want to tell you what the Bible says based on 4 questions.

I. Is Homosexuality a Sin?

The first thing we need to do is clarify the question. As a matter of fact, it would be best if we break this single question down into two. The first one should be Is being tempted with same-sex attraction a sin? The second should be, “Is homosexual activity a sin?” This is a very important distinction, for being tempted to sin is not the same as committing the sin. If it was, we’d be in trouble.

  • Matthew 4:1 – Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. (Jesus was tempted, but he didn’t sin.)

Satan has been tempting us since the beginning of time. And as it was in the beginning, temptation is not the sin; acting upon the temptation is. All of us are different in many ways, and what tempts you may not be a temptation to me. We are not all the same when it comes to what our flesh desires – some people like cottage cheese while I gag at the thought of it.

For whatever reason, though (sometimes biological, other times because of something traumatic that has happened, for reasons that are different from one person to the next), men and women, even boys and girls, sometimes find themselves attracted to others of the same sex. Frankly, this is how our culture is preying upon our youth – by capitalizing on their immaturity. But the fact is that the temptation is not the sin – acting upon it is.

So, the second part of that question should be “Is homosexual activity a sin?” If we are talking about two people of the same gender having sex, then yes, it is a sin.

Again, we are not talking about being tempted to do something; we’re talking about actually doing the thing. Some people may be born with a tendency toward violent behavior, but we don’t encourage them to go ahead and act upon those feelings because they were born that way, do we? No, the truth is pretty simple and not hard to find, IF WE ARE HONEST AND AREN’T TRYING TO HIDE THE TRUTH.

Let’s look at what Scripture says.

  • To begin with, there’s the story found in Genesis 19, the story of Sodom and the men of Sodom who wanted to rape the angels sent there to remove Lot and his family.
  • Leviticus 18:22 KJV – Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
  • Leviticus 20:13 KJV – If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them (in other words, it’s nobody’s fault but theirs).

So, as you can see in just these few verses, having sex with someone of the same sex is wrong in God’s eyes.

But that leads me to another question people ask a lot. . .

II. “If homosexual activity is a sin, then why didn’t Jesus talk about it?”

All I can say it that those who use Jesus Christ as an excuse to sin are either simply ignorant, or they know a lot of Christians are. Often, when debating a practicing homosexual, the Christian will find himself backed into a corner with “gotcha” questions. In actuality the answers to these questions are not that difficult, but the Enemy knows how to twist the truth, AMEN?

The homosexual (or ally) will set up the Christian by asking, “Do you believe the Bible?” The answer, of course, will be “Yes.”

Then the homosexual activist will go back to Gen. 19 and Leviticus 20 and ask, “So, do you believe homosexuals should be put to death?” Many times, this is where they get tripped up. Most believers will say “No,” but then that will set them up for not believing the Bible. IF they say “yes,” then, besides other reactions, the activist can ask, “OK, well then why didn’t Jesus ever talk about homosexuality? Jesus taught us to love one another, not kill each other, right?

What is the answer? How would YOU respond? DID Jesus say homosexual activity was a sin, or not? He didn’t have to!

Look, Jesus never said it was a sin to drive 100 mph in a school zone, but He did tell us to obey the laws of the land (not to mention loving our neighbor, which it’s hard to love your neighbor and drive 100 through a school zone).

And Jesus never specifically mentioned homosexuality, either. But what He DID say had wide implications for all types of sexual activity outside of God’s design. And what is that design? God created male and female, nothing in between, nothing flexible or fluid, as complimentary to each other, as examples for theological truths yet to be revealed. Look at the following verses…

  • Matthew 19:4-6 KJV – And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
  • Matthew 5:27-28 KJV – Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

Even though our culture wants to shame and intimidate, even scare us into “affirming” same-sex relationships, Jesus never did. All He ever affirmed was the example set in creation. All other sexual activity, whether gay or not, if outside the bond of marriage between a male and a female is either fornication or adultery, both of which are clearly sin.

Now, let’s ask another question…

III. Is it a sin to be PROUD of who I am?

Like I mentioned at the beginning, June is Gay Pride month. If you didn’t know, first “gay pride” parade was held in 1970, 52 years ago. The parade was a follow-up to the Stonewall riots that occurred a year earlier in Greenwich, New York, at the Stonewall Inn (which, incidentally, was declared a National Monument in 2016 by Barak Obama).

Essentially, the police raided a gay nightclub to arrest some drag queens (men who dress like women), because at that time in New York it was illegal. While the police had people locked up in the paddy wagon, somebody whipped up the watching crowd and started throwing stuff at the police. The riot lasted 5 days.

Every year since 1970 there have been parades and celebrations in the month of June. The purpose this these celebrations is to not only draw attention to the abuse of homosexuals (which, by the way, is wrong, too), but also to affirm every aspect of sexual perversion. What used to be shameful, people are proud of and want us to know it.

But, again, is it a sin to be proud of who I am? I’m proud to be an American, aren’t you? I will be attending a 4th of July celebration somewhere this year. But the difference between being proud of who you are and “Pride” month is as simple as the reason for celebrating: sexual perversion.

Besides sacrilegiously adopting the symbol of God’s mercy (the rainbow) as their emblem, people who celebrate unrepentant sin and demand the respect of others is a dangerous sign. As a matter of fact, when a culture has gone as far as ours has to celebrate a sin…one that Jesus died so that we might be forgiven, not affirmed…is evidence that God is already in the process of pouring out judgement upon a nation. Turn to Romans chapter 1 and read with me beginning at verse 26.

  • Romans 1:26-27 KJV – For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

When we see a culture so full of sin, this particular sin, and not just the act of homosexuality, but the promotion of its acceptance as normal, we should mourn, not celebrate! Such things are only evidence that we’ve already been turned over, that this is just the beginning of judgement to come.

And in case you’ve ever been told that the real sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was being inhospitable, nothing sexual, I submit to you Jude 1:7…

  • Jude 1:7 KJV – Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

Sodom and Gomorrah are an example to us.

This leads me to one last question, even though there are many, many more that could be asked…

IV. Can a homosexual be saved and go to heaven?

First off, I don’t want to go any further without reminding each and every one of us that if it wasn’t for the grace and mercy of God, every one of us would be in hell right now.

  • Romans 3:23 KJV – For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Sexual sin is no different than any other sin in this way – it takes the blood of Jesus to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

But if you want to know (because you asked, right?), let’s turn to a few passages of scripture and read what they say.

  • 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 KJV – Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
  • 1 Timothy 1:10 KJV – For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;

What these verses are saying is that those who live in unrepentant sin are, in fact, likely unsaved and in danger of hell. Notice that the tense of the verses is continual, active, on-going. But this doesn’t have to stay that way. And, more importantly, it is NOT saying that those who regularly practice and affirm homosexuality can NEVER be saved!

  • 1 Corinthians 6:11 KJV – And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

So, what does the Bible say about homosexuality? It’s a sin, for sure, and one that is an affront to the very plan and nature of God. However, there is no sin that the blood of Jesus Christ, accepted by faith with a repentant heart, can’t cleanse and wash as white as snow!

Homosexual sin is like any other sin; it’s a heart issue

  • Matthew 15:19 – For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies…

And let me go one step further…homosexual sin is like any other sin in that if you walk in the world, even as a born-again believer in Jesus Christ, without the armor of God you are just as vulnerable to temptations of the culture and the lies of Satan as any lost person.

  • Galatians 5:16 KJV – This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
  • Ephesians 6:13 KJV – Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

INVITATION

Maybe you are struggling with sin in your life. Maybe it’s something other than sexual sin. Jesus offers forgiveness.

Maybe you or a friend or loved one is struggling with the grips of homosexual sin. And maybe, after all you’ve heard, you can’t see how God could understand what you’re going through.

Well, Hebrews 4:15 says, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” Thankfully, Jesus does understand how difficult temptations can be, but he is also the answer to those temptations.

  • 2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV – Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

And even if you stumble after you’ve given your heart and life to Jesus Christ, does he cast you out? NO!

  • 1 John 2:1 KJV – My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

Whatever your need, would you give it to God today?

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“One Man’s Sunset; Another Man’s Dawn”+31

Over a two-week period, just over 31 years ago, things started to get a little weird.

I can’t recall all of the moments that led up to me concluding something bad was going to happen, but a couple stand out above the rest.

The Revival Service

It was in June of 1991. The church that I attended was having a week-long series of meetings. My mother and father did not attend the same church as I did, but on the last night of the revival, which was a Friday, my dad came. The evangelist preached on heaven that night and said something that hit me like a brick. He said, “Heaven will never be real to you until there is someone there you want to go see.”

The Movie

In that very same week, my family went to see a movie. It was a new animated film called An American Tail: Fievel Goes West. In one particular scene, an old hound dog, the retiring sheriff, sat watching a sunset with the little mouse, Fievel. The legendary actor, Jimmy Stewart, speaking as Wylie Burp, said to Fievel,

“Just remember, Fievel – one man’s sunset is another man’s dawn. I don’t know what’s out there beyond those hills. But if you ride yonder… head up, eyes steady, heart open… I think one day you’ll find that you’re the hero you’ve been looking for.” – Wylie Burp

The moment he said, “one man’s sunset is another man’s dawn,” I felt a chill and a heaviness that took my breath. I knew my dawn was coming.

Sunset

Early on Monday morning, June 11, 1991, while working 3rd shift as a security guard in a high-security nuclear facility, my dad felt sick. He asked a cleaning person which bathroom was clean, then went in, took off his gun belt, bent over a sink, and died.

It had only been since Friday the 8th that I had heard that message about heaven. That Monday was when heaven became more real than I could have ever imagined. My dad, Terry L. Baker, went home to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He surrendered his badge, took off his gun belt, and laid down – literally.

Dawn

As the sun rose over the horizon, I sped my Datsun 280Z toward the hospital. When I got there, I asked for my dad, but was led to a room where my mother was sitting. In a sobbing cry, she looked up to me and held out a little plastic bag containing my father’s personal items. She said, “This is all I have left…” That was the exact moment when I found out. That was the exact moment it became dawn.

That’s my father and me on the front row. This was 1987 in Milan, Michigan.

It may have been my dawn, but it was one of the darkest moments in my life. My dad and I were terribly close. We worked together, played together, worshiped together, and preached together. In the week before my daddy died, I went up to him and told him that I really felt like something was going to happen. He told me that he would outlive my grandchildren. But in case he didn’t, I had to make sure of one thing – would I preach his funeral?

The Funeral

Some people could not understand how I did it, but I did preach my dad’s funeral. You see, I was 24, but I had accepted the call to preach when I was 16. My dad had been a pastor, a lay preacher for years. It may have been just guy talk at the time, but in a moment of male-bonding, my dad and I agreed that whoever died first, for whatever reason, the other would preach the funeral. That is why I asked my dad that question. I needed to be sure he was serious. His response was, “Of course. I wouldn’t have it any other way.” So, I did.

My dad presided over a lot of funerals, and he even carried in his Bible a sermon that he used more often than not. The title of the sermon was “The Times I Need Him Most.” So, from his own Bible, from his own outline, I preached his funeral. And unlike I usually do today, I even gave an altar call. Believe it or not, right there to my left, beside the casket, a friend of the family came down to the altar and asked Jesus to come into his life. Never once had my dad led a person to the Lord when he preached a funeral sermon, but this time was different.

The Family Car

There will always be those who think the following is crazy; only coincidence: but God showed up in the limousine as we went to the graveyard. As soon as I got into the car, I asked the driver, who was a Christian friend, to turn the radio on. I wanted to hear some encouraging music. When he did, the DJ on WAY FM out of Nashville played a song by Wayne Watson, The Ultimate Healing. Right after that, the DJ came on the air and said, “I know we usually have songs pre-planned according to a particular format, but I just really feel led by God to play this next song – I don’t know why.”  The song was Where There is Faith, by 4Him. The second verse goes like this:

There’s a man across the sea
Never heard the sound of freedom ring
Only in his dreams
There’s a lady dressed in black
In a motorcade of Cadillacs
Daddy’s not coming back
Our hearts begin to fall
And our stability grows weak
But Jesus meets our needs if only we believe

CHORUS
Where there is faith
There is a voice calling, keep walking
You’re not alone in this world
Where there is faith
There is a peace like a child sleeping
Hope everlasting in He who is able to
Bear every burden, to heal every hurt in my heart
It is a wonderful, powerful place
Where there is faith

Today

Today, my mother’s body is now resting beside my dad’s, but I am comforted with the knowledge that one day I will see both of them again (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). In the meantime, I must carry on in the task that I have been called to do.

Several years ago, I went to the grave, and even though I knew my dad was not there, I read Proverbs 4 aloud. What better words could have been said in remembrance of a committed, consistent, caring, God-fearing, humble father? They were words that I wanted to say out loud because they were being fulfilled.

“He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live. Get wisdom, get understanding: forget [it] not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.” – Prov. 4:4-5

“Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of thy life shall be many. I have taught thee in the way of wisdom; I have led thee in right paths. … Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. … My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. … Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil.” – Proverbs 4:10-11, 14, 20-21, 25-27

Dad (and Momma), I just want you to know that I am still in the fight. I haven’t given up and I haven’t compromised. I wasn’t a fly-by-night wannabe, but a real man of God. My Sword is still sharp. My aim is still true. I even have some “arrows” that used to be in my quiver; you will meet one day.

Don’t worry, even though I know you won’t. I will keep pressing on and fighting the good fight until the time of my own sunset. Then, when this life is over, I hope I can stand there beside you when Jesus says to you, “Well done.” You did good, Daddy. I’ll make you proud.

Tell Mom we all miss her, too.

Your loving son,

Rev. Dr. Anthony C. Baker

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6 Arguments that Support the Doctrine of Eternal Security

My Outline

bibleThe following is an outline for a sermon I have preached a few times. It starts off with some arguments against the “once-saved-always-saved” position. The next part lists six basic arguments in favor of the eternal security of the believer.

Please keep something in mind as you consider the outline: evidence is cumulative. In the legal world it is called the “preponderance of evidence.” In other words, one bit of evidence might not convict, but the collection of evidence pointing in that direction, when overwhelming, leaves little other choice.

Of course, this is only an outline, not the sermon. However, take what I am giving you and print it off, do your own study, and then let me know your thoughts.

“Eternal Security” 

Arguments Against “Once Saved, Always Saved”

  1. Observational – How people live that believe it.
  2. Free Will – We are created with a will; we’re not slaves.
  3. Scriptural* (Hebrews 6; 1 John 3:9; 5:18) *These passages, when used against the doctrine of eternal security, are most often themselves misunderstood or taken out of context.

Arguments FOR “Eternal Security”

  1. Creational Argument: We are New Creations (2 Cor. 5:17)
    1. It took a supernatural act to change us
    2. We can’t act supernaturally to change us back
  2. New Birth Argument: We are Born Again (John 3:7,16)
    1. By the Spirit – Jn 3:6
    2. By the Word of God – 1 Peter 1:23
    3. We are not God, so we must remain “born again”
  3. Children of God Argument
    1. Born that way – 1 John 5:1; 1 Peter 1:23
    2. Adopted – Rom. 8:15; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5
    3. Abba – Gal. 4:1-7
  4. The Possession Argument – We belong to Christ
    1. Purchased – 1 Cor. 6:19-20; 7:23 (Bought with a Price)
    2. Given by the Father – Jn. 6:37-40; 10:28-30
    3. Will never be separated – Rom. 8:35-39
    4. Romans 14:8 – For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.
    5. He can keep what is His – 2 Tim. 1:12 “…for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” See also: 2 Timothy 4:18 And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve [me] unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom [be] glory for ever and ever. Amen.
  5. The Marriage Argument
    1. Ephesians 5:25-28, 31-32 – Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church…This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
    2. He is faithful, even when we are not.
      1. 2 Timothy 2:11-13 “…if we believe not, yet he abideth faithful…”
      2. He is God, not man! – Hosea 11:7-9
  6. It’s a Gift
    1. 2:8-9 Gift of God, by grace
    2. Romans 11:29 KJV – For the gifts and calling of God [are] without repentance (irrevocable)

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How to LOVE SIN in 7 Easy Steps

My lovely wife, Valerie, has been going through containers of “keepsakes” and “treasures” which have been packed away for the last two years, or so. What was supposed to be a library in our house had turned into a “put it there until we figure out where to put it” storage facility.

Within one of the plastic totes full of seemingly random notes, old greeting cards, and priceless “I LOVE YOU” drawings made by our little girls were old sermon outlines. I don’t know why they were there, but I’m glad they were preserved.

One of the outlines is one I preached, but I don’t remember when or where. Honestly, I don’t even remember if it was original or borrowed. Therefore, I won’t take credit (at least not all of it) for what I’m going to share. Just know, whoever developed this outline, he was preaching the truth!


How to Love Sin in Seven Easy Steps

“Abhor that which is evil, cleave to that which is good.” – Romans 12:9

To be clear, the following is an outline showing the progression one can make from that of hating (abhorring) sin, to that of loving it with equal passion.

I. Abhoration

At this stage, even the mention of sin is shocking. One might ask, “How could anyone even do that?” Unfortunately, even though it is a good thing that one abhors (hates; is totally repulsed by it) a particular sin, the danger – the crack in the foundation – is to understand that “God says that is sin; but I don’t know why.”

Folks, if you will remember, Eve took of the fruit when offered because her doctrine was off a bit. In other words, the message she’d been taught (by Adam) was that touching the fruit was deadly. In her mind she knew what God supposedly thought, but she didn’t know the “why.” That’s where legalism begins, and ultimately apostacy.

II. Awareness

Step two on the path to loving sin is becoming more aware of the sin. You know it’s there, you’ve heard more about it, and it’s not quite so shocking the more you hear of it. Granted, it’s still HORRIBLE to you at this point, and you cannot for the life of you see how anyone could get involved in it.

This is one of the greatest dangers we face in modern times – the increase of knowledge. In centuries past, even up to the mid-20th century, many shameful sins were hidden from the general public (Ephesians 5:12). Back in those days it was shocking that someone you knew was caught smoking cigarettes in the school bathroom. Now the sky’s the limit with what children can get away with, even in the classroom!

Years ago, it wasn’t that we would have just been shocked by where the sin was committed; we would have shocked to even hear that such a sin existed!

III. Association

The third step toward loving sin begins when some sort of contact with the sin is made. In other words, it’s no longer something you’ve heard about in sermons or gossip; it’s something with which you’ve had a run in.

Often what happens at this stage is that your belief about the sin isn’t affected, but the contact (i.e., association with someone who commits the sin) develops curiosity. Oh, you still think this sin is wrong, even abhorrent, but you’re beginning to become accustomed to it. Still disturbing, but not as shocking.

IV. Acceptance

This is the stage where so many Christians are right now. They’ve watched so much television, movies, and social media that they are no longer shocked, but they’ve come to accept sin as a matter of choice.

As a matter of fact, it is during this stage toward loving sin when morals become relative. You assimilate into the thinking that there is “good and bad in all things.” Personally, you think the sin is wrong, but it’s not as big an issue anymore.

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

1 Timothy 4:1-2

V. Admiration

At this step you are not only well on your way to loving sin, but your feet are tripping over each other as you run down the slippery slope. This is the “Devil’s Advocate” stage.

After being around those who are regularly practicing a sin (not just on media, but in your associations), you start to believe that maybe the sin in question was not as bad as you first thought. Granted, you don’t actually get involve, per se, but you become defensive of those that are involved. You become an advocate, a fellow-traveler, and create “safe places” where the sin can be affirmed.

At this stage you have forgotten your original feelings, the ones you now see as “backward,” and focus on “redeeming values” that outweigh the bad.

VI. Assimilation

Here we are at step 6, the point in your journey where you begin participating on some lower level. If nothing else, you would not say you’re fully into it; you’re just experimenting and having fun.

Regardless of your level of participation, the sin in question is no longer in question. You start saying things like, “God must have been talking about something different.” As a matter of fact, now you become more of a Bible and Theology expert than ever before! If anyone challenges your exegesis, you become terribly defensive, for this is now part of your life’s fabric.

VII. Adoration

What was evil is now good – what was good is now evil. You’ve done an about flip and now adore the thing you once abhorred.

Non-involvement becomes total involvement and is accompanied by championing praise for the sin and those who commit it. You’re proud of it, actually.

You’ve now become a lover of sin, and all it took were seven easy steps.

Wasn’t hard, was it?



Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, “Wherein have we wearied him?” When ye say, “Everyone that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them;” or, “Where is the God of judgment?” – Malachi 2:17

He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD. – Proverbs 17:15

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! – Isaiah 5:20

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How We Know Jesus Was a Gift from God

A Christmas Sermon Outline

Have you ever been given a gift, or seen one under the Christmas tree, that needed no card or tag informing you who sent it? Maybe the meticulous wrapping was a clue to who the wrapper was.

I know Christmas is still a few days away, but some of you might need something to preach or teach between now and then. Therefore, please accept as my gift of an outline I prepared, “How We Know Jesus Was a Gift from God.”

Please, feel free to use it 🙂

“How We Know Jesus Was a Gift from God”

I.  Because of When THIS Gift Was Given

·   Galatians 4:4 “When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His son…”

II.  Because of How THIS Gift Was Wrapped

·   Luke 2:12 “And this shall be a sign unto you, you shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”

·   Philippians 2:7 “But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:”

·   Hebrews 4:15 KJV – “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin.”

III.  Because THIS Gift Was Truly Free

·   John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He GAVE…”

·   Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace…it is a GIFT of God, NOT of works…”

·   Romans 3:24 “Being justified FREELY by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”

IV.  Because THIS Gift Was Exactly What We Needed

A.  To Bring Us Life – Luke 2:11 “Unto you is born, in the city of David, a SAVIOR…”

B.  To Bring Us Joy – Lamentations 3:22-23 “His mercies are new every morning”

V.  Because of the Love that Went Into It.

·   1 John 4:9 “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.”

VI.  Conclusion:

A.  Accept the Gift of Jesus

B.  Give Thanks! – 2 Cor. 9:15 “Thanks be to God for this unspeakable Gift!”

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The Joy of Christmas (an outline)

This past Sunday morning, the third Sunday in the Advent week, I preached a sermon that taught about the joy that was experienced in the Christmas story.

This morning I am uploading my outline from the sermon so that you may have it. But it is also the same outline I’m going to use this morning on our Discord server, FaithChatt.

The Joy of Christmas

Opening Text: Luke 2:10 “And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”

1. Joy Defined: What is Joy?

Examples: “I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart!” “Joy to the world, all the boys and girls…” “Happy Happy, Joy Joy Song” (from Ren and Stempy)

            A. How many words translated as “joy”? 10 in Greek, 25 in Hebrew! If the word LOVE could have multiple meanings (4-5 different words in Greek), then JOY might be much more difficult to define, correct?

            B. Merriam-Webster: The emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires DELIGHT; the expression or exhibition of such emotion; a state of happiness or fidelity (bliss); a source or cause of delight.

2. Joy Delivered: Who Were the Recipients? Who Delivered?

            A. Zacharias and the “many” – Luke 1:14 (Gabriel)

            B. Mary (Gabriel, Elisabeth, God) Luke 1

            C. Elisabeth and John the Baptist (Mary, the Holy Ghost) Luke 1

            D. The Shepherds (the angel of the Lord: Gabriel?) Luke 2

            E. The Wise men (Testimony, the star) Matthew 2

            F. To All People Luke 2

3. Joy Described: How they Responded

            A. Khar-ah: cheerfulness, i.e., calm delight

                        1. Matt. 1:14: Zacharias and people

                        2. Matt. 2:10: Wise men (great (megas) – joy)  REJOICED χαίρω chaírō, khah’-ee-ro; a primary verb; to be “cheer”ful, i.e. calmly happy or well-off; impersonally, especially as salutation (on meeting or parting), be well.

            Luke 2:10-17: to The Shepherds – they shared the news!

“To get the full value of joy you must have someone to divide it with.”
― Mark Twain

            3. All people – we’ll get to that in a second…

            B. ἀγαλλίασις agallíasis, ag-al-lee’-as-is; from G21; exultation (a feeling of triumphant elation or jubilation; rejoicing) ; specially, welcome:—gladness, (exceeding) joy.

  1. Elisabeth For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. – Luke 1:44 KJV

            C. σκιρτάω skirtáō, skeer-tah’-o; akin to σκαίρω skaírō (to skip); to jump, i.e. sympathetically move (as the quickening of a fetus):—leap (for joy).

1. Luke 1:41, 44 KJV – And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: … For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.

Luke 6:23 KJV – Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward [is] great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.

            D.  ἀγαλλιάω agalliáō, ag-al-lee-ah’-o; from agan (much) and G242; properly, to jump for joy, i.e. exult:—be (exceeding) glad, with exceeding joy, rejoice (greatly).

1. Luke 1:47 KJV – Mary – And my spirit hath rejoiced (jumped for joy) in God my Saviour. (In reply to Elizabeth’s statement about John)

2. Matthew 5:12 KJV – Rejoice (jump for joy), and be exceeding glad: for great [is] your reward in heaven… (Jesus)

E.  χαίρω chaírō, khah’-ee-ro; a primary verb; to be “cheer”ful, i.e., calmly happy or well-off; impersonally, especially as salutation (on meeting or parting), be well.

  1. Matthew 2:10 KJV – Wise men – When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.

4. Joy to be Determined

Luke 2:10-17: to The Shepherds – they shared the news! “To get the full value of joy you must have someone to divide it with.”
― Mark Twain

A. We’ve heard the news

B. We’ve seen the “star”

C. “Go tell it on the mountain that Jesus Christ is Lord!”

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Heaven is a Personal, Permanent Place!

I preached on Heaven this morning. Want to watch the sermon (and me singing a song beforehand)? Well, to borrow from a funny guy, here’s your video.

(Oh, btw, please pardon the choppy internet service)

Click on the picture to watch the video. Thanks!

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A Sermon Not Preached Enough

Truth be told, I’m probably setting myself up for a firestorm of hateful comments and threats with the video I’m about to share. I’m tempted not to.

But then what would that make me?

Then again, with a much smaller number of readers than I had a year or two ago, it’s likely that the video I post will only be seen by a few, and most of them (maybe even you) will not watch or listen to all of it.

So, is it worth it? Is it worth sharing?

Of course it is! If it convicts one person . . . If it reaches one heart . . . If it only causes one person to stop for a minute and consider the truth of Scripture . . . then it was worth it.

Then again, it’s not my job to decide the value of a blog post, or even a sermon. My job is to be faithful to the call to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to exposit the Word of God so that others may come to the knowledge of the Truth.

Preached Sunday evening, September 5, 2021, at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Warthen, GA. Dr. Anthony Baker, Pastor.

There are not a lot of people these days using Romans chapter one to describe America and the culture in which we live. No, they are too afraid of the WOKE police and social media censors, not to mention the protestors who scream and threaten as they label Christians as the hateful and bigoted ones.

Too many pastors are afraid of offending, of burning bridges, of losing whatever numbers we have left.

But if we can’t preach the truth, preacher and pastors, we need to just call it quits and go home. I’m sure that we are not too far away from what God spoke through the Prophet Micah:

“I wish one of you would shut the temple doors, so you would no longer kindle a useless fire on My altar! I am not pleased with you,” says the Lord of Hosts, “and I will accept no offering from your hands.

Source: https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/Malachi/1/10

And if, after listening to the above sermon, you think I’m going overboard on the “sex” thing, just a few minutes ago, right before I linked the above video to this post, my wife sent me a story in Messenger.

https://newschannel9.com/news/local/chattanooga-man-among-18-charged-in-tennessee-human-trafficking-operation?fbclid=IwAR3JvOaShXlS4LRRxvEHGbw-lyPayhazJ_OdTWNLPZiBUBJTRlYxzETmhPY

What’s this world coming to?

Read Romans 1.

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Filed under America, Bethlehem Baptist Church, current events, Defining Marriage, Preaching