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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Just A Thought

What if everyone got along. You know, like being friendly with everyone, helping those in need, never making fun of another human being. No more bullying. Skin color does not matter, Size, age gender, preferences, likes dislikes mean little to us. I wonder if that could happen?  Hmmm! "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity"! Psalm 133:1; I wonder what would happen? Just a thought.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

WOW. It's Been A While!!!

Greetings folks.
It has been a long year and I have had a good break.
My intent was to redesign and rename this blogsite.
With what is happening in our world today and all that is going on around us, it is a challenge to focus. So this is just a short note to let you know I will be writing again and I hope to bring about articles that will challenge and encourage. Watch for the new name and the first article. Have a blessed day. Dr. Robert Coutts

Friday, October 21, 2016

True Christian Friendship

This article is taken from Got with my addition.   

 (This is my addition to the article) A few years back, 5 to be exact, my wife took ill with stage four liver disease caused by medicine. She was about to die. God had other plans and today, five years later she is doing well with a donor liver and progressing every day. But it was not all positive while we waited for the new liver. Not one of my minister friends stood with me. They seemingly deserted me and left me to be alone and watch my wife slowly die. That hurt because after giving so much time and effort to the same ministry as those whom I thought were friends I now stood alone with God. BUT...there was an enormous bright spot in all of this. My wife and I had a friend from a previous church with whom we stayed in constant contact by telephone, Skype, and visits. When my wife was hospitalized, Annette (our friend) would work at her day job from 5 am to 5 pm daily for four days a week and then on Friday afternoon, she would get in her car and drive to the Hospital in Philadelphia which was 3 hours away. She would stay in the room with us until Monday afternoon and then drive back to work. She did this over, and over and over for the better part of a year. She never complained, she never said she could not do it anymore, she just kept coming. While she was with us in the hospital, she would help my wife and I do therapy, baths, medicines, laundry, go for meals and so many more things that are too numerous to enumerate. When my wife was released from the hospital, she helped us pack so we could move from Pennsylvania to Florida. Then she even drove the car while I drove the moving truck all the way to Florida. When that was all settled, she would go back to Pennsylvania and plan her next trip down to help us in any way she could. She would, and still does come down our way two or three times a year. We are on the telephone and Skype constantly. I cannot write down all the things she does because I know she wants to do these things as unto the Lord. She is by far and away the friend that God talks about in the Bible. If you are looking for a definition of what a true Christian friend is, in our book it is spelled...Annette.

What is true friendship according to the Bible?The Lord Jesus Christ gave us the definition of a true friend: "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you" (John 15:13-15). Jesus is the pure example of a true friend, for He laid down His life for His "friends." What is more, anyone may become His friend by trusting in Him as his personal savior, being born again and receiving new life in Him.

There is an example of true friendship between David and Saul's son Jonathan, who, in spite of his father Saul's pursuit of David and attempts to kill him, stood by his friend. You will find that story in 1 Samuel chapter 18 through chapter 20. Some pertinent passages are 1 Samuel 18:1-4; 19: 4-7; 20:11-17, 41-42.

Proverbs is another good source of wisdom regarding friends. "A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity" (Proverbs 17:17). "A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24). The issue here is that in order have a friend, one must be a friend. "Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses" (Proverbs 27:6). "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" (Proverbs 27:17).

The principle of friendship is also found in Amos. "Can two walk together, except they be agreed?" (Amos 3:3 KJV). Friends are of like mind. The truth that comes from all of this is a friendship is a relationship that is entered into by individuals, and it is only as good or as close as those individuals choose to make it. Someone has said that if you can count your true friends on the fingers of one hand, you are blessed. A friend is one whom you can be yourself with and never fear that he or she will judge you. A friend is someone that you can confide in with complete trust. A friend is someone you respect and that respects you, not based upon worthiness but based upon a likeness of mind.

Finally, the real definition of a true friend comes from the Apostle Paul: "For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:7-8). "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends" (John 15:13). Now, that is true friendship!


What does the Bible say about gay marriage / same sex marriage?
While the Bible does address homosexuality, it does not explicitly mention gay marriage/same-sex marriage. It is clear, however, that the Bible condemns homosexuality as an immoral and unnatural sin. Leviticus 18:22 identifies homosexual sex as an abomination, a detestable sin. Romans 1:26-27 declares homosexual desires and actions to be shameful, unnatural, lustful, and indecent. First Corinthians 6:9 states that homosexuals are unrighteous and will not inherit the kingdom of God. Since both homosexual desires and actions are condemned in the Bible, it is clear that homosexuals “marrying” is not God’s will, and would be, in fact, sinful.

Whenever the Bible mentions marriage, it is between a male and a female. The first mention of marriage, Genesis 2:24, describes it as a man leaving his parents and being united to his wife. In passages that contain instructions regarding marriage, such as 1 Corinthians 7:2-16 and Ephesians 5:23-33, the Bible clearly identifies marriage as being between a man and a woman. Biblically speaking, marriage is the lifetime union of a man and a woman, primarily for the purpose of building a family and providing a stable environment for that family.

The Bible alone, however, does not have to be used to demonstrate this understanding of marriage. The biblical viewpoint of marriage has been the universal understanding of marriage in every human civilization in world history. History argues against gay marriage. Modern secular psychology recognizes that men and women are psychologically and emotionally designed to complement one another. In regard to the family, psychologists contend that a union between a man and woman in which both spouses serve as good gender role models is the best environment in which to raise well-adjusted children. Psychology argues against gay marriage. In nature/physicality, clearly, men and women were designed to “fit” together sexually. With the “natural” purpose of sexual intercourse being procreation, clearly only a sexual relationship between a man and a woman can fulfill this purpose. Nature argues against gay marriage.

So, if the Bible, history, psychology, and nature all argue for marriage being between a man and a woman—why is there such a controversy today? Why are those who are opposed to gay marriage/same-sex marriage labeled as hateful, intolerant bigots, no matter how respectfully the opposition is presented? Why is the gay rights movement so aggressively pushing for gay marriage/same-sex marriage when most people, religious and non-religious, are supportive of—or at least far less opposed to—gay couples having all the same legal rights as married couples with some form of civil union?

The answer, according to the Bible, is that everyone inherently knows that homosexuality is immoral and unnatural, and the only way to suppress this inherent knowledge is by normalizing homosexuality and attacking any and all opposition to it. The best way to normalize homosexuality is by placing gay marriage/same-sex marriage on an equal plane with traditional opposite-gender marriage. Romans 1:18-32 illustrates this. The truth is known because God has made it plain. The truth is rejected and replaced with a lie. The lie is then promoted and the truth suppressed and attacked. The vehemence and anger expressed by many in the gay rights movement to any who oppose them is, in fact, an indication that they know their position is indefensible. Trying to overcome a weak position by raising your voice is the oldest trick in the debating book. There is perhaps no more accurate description of the modern gay rights agenda than Romans 1:31, “they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.”

To give sanction to gay marriage/same-sex marriage would be to give approval to the homosexual lifestyle, which the Bible clearly and consistently condemns as sinful. Christians should stand firmly against the idea of gay marriage/same-sex marriage. Further, there are strong and logical arguments against gay marriage/same-sex marriage from contexts completely separated from the Bible. One does not have to be an evangelical Christian to recognize that marriage is between a man and a woman.

According to the Bible, marriage is ordained by God to be between a man and a woman (Genesis 2:21-24; Matthew 19:4-6). Gay marriage/same-sex marriage is a perversion of the institution of marriage and an offense to the God who created marriage. As Christians, we are not to condone or ignore sin. Rather, we are to share the love of God and the forgiveness of sins that is available to all, including homosexuals, through Jesus Christ. We are to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) and contend for truth with “gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15). As Christians, when we make a stand for truth and the result is personal attacks, insults, and persecution, we should remember the words of Jesus: “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you” (John 15:18-19).


Friday, October 14, 2016


I was planning on keeping quiet about this election 2016 but my Christian conscience would not allow it.
What has happened has become somewhat of a side show. An effort made on both side to see who can discredit the other the best. In so doing a deflection is occurring. We are being deflected away from the issues that affect us. It is an attempt to distort the process and appeal to the baser sides of people’s lives.  
 Well, this election is more than a choice between two candidates. Americans are making a choice between two very different political parties, two very different views of government, two very different Supreme Courts, and two very different futures for our country. Please note and be aware…one of the candidates is much more consistent with biblical teachings than the other.
Therefore the choices made in this election will affect more than just the Supreme Court; they will have a significant impact on religious freedom, abortion, gender identity regulations, the military, terrorism, border control, foreign affairs including Israel, taxes and the economy, health care reform, energy, and racial tension among other issues. Much is at stake during this election, and it will affect future generations who are born into this country and those who become citizens.
But do not  lose hope. It is right for Christians to have influence in the government, whether through their vote or leadership. Remember, the Apostle Paul urged believers to pray for good government in 1 Tim. 2:1-3.
But if we are to pray for good government, shouldn’t we also vote for good government when we have the opportunity? If I were you, I would be deeply reluctant to simply walk away from the process in disgust, or vote for a write-in candidate in order to register a protest against both parties. If all the Christians in the country decide not to vote for either candidate, our rulers will then be chosen entirely by non-Christians, many of whom will increasingly use the immense power of government to promote evil, silence Christians, and oppose Christian values in every area of life. This is the opposite of what Paul told us to pray for in 1 Timothy 2:2.”
As  Christians we should not be fearful or discouraged. We should continue to pray, being mindful of what Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon long ago: ‘The Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will’ (Daniel 4:17).”
Whatever the outcome, God will be in control—He will be working in the world as He always has and is. We can find comfort in God’s sovereignty that God doesn’t work around our choices but through them.  Job 42:2 says that God’s plans cannot be thwarted by humans.
No matter what happens this election, God will still be God and His plan will continue through humanity’s choices. We can trust Him at all times because we need Him at all times. We need God just as much on our best day as we do on our worst. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016


In light of what is happening in our presidential election cycle and all the false things we are hearing, I felt it appropriate  to investigate the subject of lying.  Please read it with an open heart.
This article is taken from the website “What Christians Want To Know” and was written by Derek Hill.
What Does the Bible Say About Lying
by Derek Hill ·
All throughout the Bible, there are scriptures that discuss the topic of lying.  Some explain how certain people lied.  Others talk about the consequences of lying.  I would venture to say that lying can be one of the easiest of sins to commit.  One little sentence leaves the lips and all is well again.  We all fall prey to it on occasion and it sometimes creates more chaos then we could have imagined.  Other times you can get away with a little white lie (here on earth; not before the throne).  Lying is nothing new.  In fact, it is what introduced Adam and Eve to the very first sin.  So, let us start at the beginning after creation was complete.
Proverbs 6:16, 17 and 19 – There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue…a false witness who breathes out lies.
The Very First Lie
In Gen 2:16-17 God says to Adam, “you may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat it you shall surely die.”  Quick side note, creation was not finished here because God had not made Eve yet.  In Gen 2:18-23, the next passage, God then creates Eve from one of Adam’s ribs.  After this, creation was then finished.  In Gen 3:1-5 we are introduced to the serpent (Satan) and his very first temptation to Eve; now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.  He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘you shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?”  And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’”  But the serpent said to the woman,You will not surely die.  For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”  This is also where we are introduced to Satan’s greatest weapon, the half-truth.  Satan knew that they would not die right that second, but he did know that they would die eventually and that was not part of God’s plan.  Adam and Eve believed the half-truth.  They indeed did not die that day, but they still died.
Are All Lies Considered Sin?
By certain events in the Bible, I am saying no.  How can this be?  Let us look at two examples as I explain.  Exodus 1:16-21 starts with the king of Egypt saying to two midwives, “when you serve as a midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.”  But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king commanded them, but let the male children live.  So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?”  The midwives said to Pharoah (here is the lie), “because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.”  So God dealt well with the midwives.  And the people multiplied and grew very strong.  And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families.  The fear of God is why the midwives lied.  They knew that murder was wrong.  They didn’t lie for selfish reasons; they lied because they feared God.
Joshua 2:1-21 tells the story of Rahab the prostitute and how she lied to save two spies that Joshua had sent to check out Jericho and other local areas of the land.  Her lie came from the same position as the midwives.  Verse 8b-9a says, she came up to them on the roof and said to the men, “I know that the LORD has given you the land, and that the fear of you (the spies) has fallen upon us.  She feared the spies because they had God with them, thus this also makes her fear God.  Her lie also was not for selfish gain.  It was the fear of God that drove her to this decision.  Anytime a person lies for the honest, true fear of God, I believe they will not be held accountable for it.  It is those that lie for other reasons such as: selfishness, lust, greed and all sorts of other human endeavors that the lie becomes sin.
When a Lie Becomes Sin
Lies become sin when any tiny hint of selfishness is there.  Acts 5:1-9 is a perfect example.  Ananias and Sapphira were a married couple that sold a piece of their property.  They kept a portion of the money back for themselves but they wanted to look good in front of others, so they lied and said they were giving all of the profit to the church. In verses 3-5 Peter says to Ananias, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land?  While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own?  And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal?  Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart?  You have not lied to men but to God.”  When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and breathed his last.  Men in the church carried him out and buried him.  Later on Sapphira comes into the church knowing nothing about what happened to her husband.  Verses 7-10a says, after an interval of about three hours his (Ananias) wife came in, not knowing what had happened.  And Peter said to her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for so much.”  And she said, “Yes, for so much.”  But Peter said to her, “How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord?  Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.”  Immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last.  Their lies were built around a false pretense to look like generous, giving people to the rest of the church.  God does not accept this behavior.
Other Verses About Lying
Proverbs 6:16, 17 and 19 There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue…a false witness who breathes out lies.
Leviticus 19:11-12You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely; you shall not lie to one another.  You shall not swear by My name falsely, and so profane the name of your God: I am the Lord.
Psalm 24:4-5He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false and does not swear deceitfully.  He will receive blessing from the LORD and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Here is an article about Christian Hypocrisy I found on the website all about God. A good read.

Christian Hypocrisy – What is it?

Hypocrisy is “claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.”1 In fact, the ancient Greek word comes from the word for a stage actor or one who wears a mask. It is not necessarily the fact that they sin that makes them a hypocrite, it’s the fact that they don’t acknowledge it. They don’t admit that their lives contradict what they say. They are inauthentic and imposters.

Perhaps you have personal experience with a Christian hypocrite. I do. Perhaps you know someone who says one thing and then does another. They teach one thing and live the opposite. In a sense, we are all hypocrites. The term isn’t reserved for Christians. For example, Sue may call herself a vegetarian, but slip up now and then. A dentist may tell his patients not to eat candy, but then go home and enjoy sweets. We are all hypocritical occasionally. No one is perfect.
Christian Hypocrisy – Jesus’ Reaction
Combatting hypocrisy was a passion for Jesus. In fact, much of Matthew 23 is dedicated to this topic. Here are some excerpts:
    “Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: ‘The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. Everything they do is done for people to see...

    “‘Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.

    “‘Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.’”
Jesus took hypocrisy very seriously. Mark Mittleberg says, “Our friends naturally see Christians’ hypocritical behavior as being unacceptable. But they need help to see that Christ feels the same way.”2 They need to see that they agree with Jesus on this one! Christian Hypocrisy – Some Pointers
When discussing Christian hypocrisy with an unbeliever, here are some pointers to consider:
  • Many people who claim to be Christians don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Perhaps they are Christian in name only.
  • A Christian is called to grow in faith and progress to being more like Christ. This doesn’t always happen instantly. Many Christians continue to struggle with temptation to sin. We are called to put on a new nature and allow the Holy Spirit to transform our lives (Ephesians 4:23-24). It is not hypocritical to fall. It is hypocritical to deny that you fell and pretend that you were successful.
  • A Christian is called to live a life of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience (Colossians 3:12). Be intentional about letting God change your heart.
  • Christians should admit hypocrisy. All of us are hypocrites in some area. Be vulnerable, honest, and authentic with unbelievers. Acknowledge your sin and share how freeing God’s forgiveness is.
To conclude, we can learn a lot from this statement from Mark Mittleberg: “The primary issue regarding the validity of Christianity is not Jesus’ followers but Jesus himself—and what he offers to those who follow him. Ultimately we need to encourage our friends to put their faith not in Christianity—and certainly not in the flawed efforts of frail Christians—but in the powerful and proven person of Jesus Christ himself.”2
1 New Oxford American Dictionary, 2nd Ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005).
2 Mittleberg, Mark. The Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Who Is Christ? He Is Your Life, That’s Who

This is taken from Colossians 3:
 So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.
Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too—the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ.
And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and grabbing whatever attracts your fancy. That’s a life shaped by things and feelings instead of by God. It’s because of this kind of thing that God is about to explode in anger. It wasn’t long ago that you were doing all that stuff and not knowing any better. But you know better now, so make sure it’s all gone for good: bad temper, irritability, meanness, profanity, dirty talk.
 Don’t lie to one another. You’re done with that old life. It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you’ve stripped off and put in the fire. Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe. Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it. All the old fashions are now obsolete. Words like Jewish and non-Jewish, religious and irreligious, insider and outsider, uncivilized and uncouth, slave and free, mean nothing. From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ.
So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.
Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other. None of this going off and doing your own thing. And cultivate thankfulness. Let the Word of Christ—the Message—have the run of the house. Give it plenty of room in your lives. Instruct and direct one another using good common sense. And sing, sing your hearts out to God! Let every detail in your lives—words, actions, whatever—be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way.
That is who Christ is in you.
Have a blessed day.

Pastor Robert Coutts

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