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Who’s in the Basket    February 18, 2020

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Religion, Uncategorized.
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Saul of Tarsus was the first great persecutor of the church.  In a blaze of glory, he met the resurrected Jesus while on his way to Damascus to attack the church there.  Then, instead of attacking the Church Paul started preaching fearlessly about this Jesus who rose from the grave.  The Jews sought to kill Paul because he was preaching Jesus as the Messiah who bore our sins on the cross, died in our place, and rose from the dead to bring us life.  As the enraged Jews looked everywhere in Damascus for Paul, he was lowered in a basket from the walls to make his escape.  When we share the Gospel with even just one person, and they receive the message and are born again we never know who might’ve just climbed in the basket.

Long long ago and far far away back in the dream time before Facebook, Amazon, and streaming, my wife and I felt the call to hold church services on the campus of a state university.  Everyone told us that would be impossible what with the judiciously manufactured liberal imposed mythical Constitutional separation of church and state doctrine.  I questioned God, “Are you sure?” My wife and I questioned each other, “Are you sure?”  But try to resist as much as we could the calling wouldn’t leave us alone.

I traipsed from office to office asking one bureaucrat after another for permission to hold church services in a public building on the campus of a state university.  Discouragement stalked me as I scuttled from “No,” to “No,” to “No way!”  In the natural I was skeptical when I started and after a month or two of pushing that big rock up that steep hill all I could do was encourage myself in the Lord to keep plodding on.  All we had was prayer.   Happily, that was all we needed.

I finally located the right bureaucrat.  He was the one in charge of renting space to outside groups.  After a diligent search and several misdirected wrong turns, I located his office buried deep beneath a massive pile of bricks and steel.  Then I learned he was never in his office.  Whenever I showed up his secretary would tell me, ‘He just left,” “He’s off for the day,” or “You just missed him.”  I tried coming at every hour of the day on every day of the week.  After a month or so it got to be a running joke between me and the secretary.  I’d pop in and she’d laugh, “He just left,” or one of her other variations of “You’re wasting your time.”

Then one day I walked in and there was the invisible bureaucrat standing in the middle of the room.  Before the Secretary could laugh or say anything I blurted out, “I want to rent a room to hold church services.”

To my surprise he said, “No problem.”  Then as he vanished into his inner sanctum he tossed, “Becky draw up a contract for the second-floor meeting room in the Student Union at the regular rate.”   Within a week we were singing praises to God and preaching the Gospel on the campus of that state university.  Everyone said it couldn’t be done.  I didn’t think it was possible.  But God did it.

For the next six months every Sunday we carried our keyboard, guitar, and a box of Bibles into the upper room.  Every Wednesday, as part of our rental agreement, we had an informational booth in the Student Union inviting people to the service.

The response was underwhelming but as church planters and domestic missionaries we were used to empty seats.  We had some students who came.  We had a few who came more than once.  And we had one who came faithfully time after time.  This one student eventually confessed Jesus as his personal Lord and confessed that God had raised Jesus from the dead.  He stepped from the darkness into the light, from death into life and now twenty-five years later he’s still praising God and trying his best to share the life, the light, and the joy he found with others.

As a couple of believers who’ve devoted most of our lives to preaching the Gospel, if this one born again believer is the totality of all we’ve done and all we will do before the curtain comes down … that’s more than enough.  Thank you, Father, for allowing us to see the fruit from Your vine.

As slim as the attendance was, we praised God every day for the opportunity and gave him glory for opening a door everyone thought could not be opened.  Then they shut us down.  They cancelled our contract and slammed the door shut.

I went to see the long elusive bureaucrat to find out why.  He told me a delegation of local pastors came to the school to complain because we were holding service on campus and they weren’t.  The religious spirit did its best to stop the Spirit.  But we know He opens doors, and no one can shut what He’s opened until the appointed time.  The anointing moved on and we knew God had accomplished what he’d sent us there to do.  Someone had climbed into the basket.

This reminds me of another time God called me to do something.  He called me to stand in front of an abortion mill.  I am the ever-remorseful father of four aborted babies.  Forgiven but ashamed of what I did, but not too ashamed to confess my sin publicly if there’s even the slightest chance doing so might save a life and save someone else from living with the pain and emptiness I feel.  For about six months several days a week I stood a lonely vigil in all types of weather with a handmade sign reading, “I repent for aborting my children” on one side and “God Forgave me” on the other.

People would drive by and honk.  Some would give me the thumbs up.  Others would use another digit to send a different message.  The police came and told me I had to leave.  But I was on public property and I refused.  The people from the abortion mill tried several tactics to chase me away.  Some people on their way in to end the lives of their children stopped to berate me and call me everything except a child of God.

No matter what the weather, no matter how vile the abuse I stayed there because I felt God called me to bear witness, so I stood my ground.  Then one day a couple stopped by on their way into the abortion mill and read me the riot act.  They told me what a terrible person I was.  They told me it was their choice.  They yelled and gestured as loudly as any one ever did.  Then about a half hour later they came back and in tears told me God had convicted them and they’d changed their mind.  They were going to keep their baby.

Immediately I felt released from that call.  Someone had climbed into the basket.

You might not know who’s in the basket.  You may never know.  All we need to know is that when God says stand there and hold the rope, we need to do our part and leave the results up to Him because it’s not about who we are and what we do.  It’s all about who He is and what He’s done.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2020 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

Time is of the Essence  February 4, 2020

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Religion, Uncategorized.
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According to the Business Dictionary the title of this essay is a provision often included in construction, supply, transport, and other types of contracts to stress the punctual completion of the job (or repayment of a loan) as a vital element of the performance of the contract. Any failure to complete the work (or to pay the sums) within stated time limits may constitute breach of the contract.

Salvation is not a transaction based on a contract.  It’s a gift.  It isn’t earned.  It’s based upon the grace of God extended to all and accepted through faith.  And while this gift shines from the cross of Christ through the meandering corridors of History, each of us has but a fleeting moment upon the world’s stage.  When it’s done it’s done.  It’s just the opposite of a concert; when the curtain comes down, we face the music.  Or as the Word of God puts it, “Everyone has to die once, then face the consequences.”

The world tells us, “Opportunity only knocks once” meaning if you miss your chance it won’t come again.  Looking at the totality of life that’s true, but looking within the fragile bubble of time that is our here-today-gone-today life we have opportunity after opportunity.  We had last week, and yesterday, today, and God willing tomorrow.  At any moment we can make an altar of our prayers and confess Jesus as our Lord and believe in our hearts that God has raised Him from the dead.  If we’ll do those two things the Word of God promises, “You will be saved.”  If the curtain comes down before we do so we might not like the sequel.

The whole of the Old Testament points to Christ: the fulcrum of History.  And throughout the New Testament God points back to examples and signposts of what was to come.  To the Jews there is no more powerful story than their exodus from Egypt.  Because they refused to believe God they wandered in the wilderness for forty years.  These people who witnessed the miracles of Moses, crossed the Red Sea on dry land, ate the manna from heaven, and drank from the rock which followed them refused to worship God.  Instead they followed the trinket gods of their own imagination.  And God left their bodies in the dust as a testimony to their hardheartedness.

Their rebellion and their lack of faith becomes a warning to us when the author of the letter to the Hebrews tells us, “Today, please listen; don’t turn a deaf ear as in ‘the bitter uprising,’ that time of wilderness testing!  Even though they watched me at work for forty years, your ancestors refused to let me do it my way over and over they tried my patience.  And I was provoked, oh, so provoked I said, ‘They’ll never keep their minds on God; they refuse to walk down my road.’  Exasperated, I vowed, ‘They’ll never get where they’re going, never be able to sit down and rest.’”

Today is all we have.  No one promised us tomorrow.  If we miss our chance, if we refuse to follow God and instead embrace the world we should be prepared for a hand full of ashes.  The Apostle John put it like this, “Don’t love the world’s ways. Don’t love the world’s goods. Love of the world squeezes out love for the Father. Practically everything that goes on in the world—wanting your own way, wanting everything for yourself, wanting to appear important—has nothing to do with the Father. It just isolates you from him. The world and all its wanting, wanting, wanting is on the way out.”

But John didn’t leave it there.  He finished the passage with a promise, “but whoever does what God wants is set for eternity.”

And when it comes to the promises of God we need to realize, “For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.”

Sometimes life seems like a long time.  It always feels like we have hours to kill but not a moment to spare.  Our fleeting moment upon this stage is rushing by.  Like flowers in the field we sprout, bloom, and fade away.  For most of us one or two generations at the most and no one will remember we were here.  So grab the chance and remember time is of the essence and listen to these words ringing in our ears, “Today, please listen; don’t turn a deaf ear as in the bitter uprising.”

It’s never too late.  Until it is.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2020 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

 

It’s a Battlefield Brother  January 21, 2020

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We’re in a spiritual war every day whether we recognize it or not, and if we ignore the Bible’s exhortation to fight the good fight we’ll inevitably become a casualty.

As soon as Jesus was resurrected, after triumphing over Satan and taking the keys to death and Hell away from him He had the legal right to completely reclaim the earth Adam had given over to Satan.  But He didn’t do it.

Have you ever asked yourself why didn’t Jesus set everything right when He was here?  Maybe you haven’t asked this question specifically, but have you wondered, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” or “Why do evil people seem to prosper?” or the classic, “Why did fill in the blank have to get cancer, get hurt, die, etc. ?”  If you’ve asked any one of these questions or any one of the million variations you’ve asked, “Why didn’t Jesus set everything right when He was here?”

Here’s the short answer; He didn’t do it because if He had there would’ve been no opportunity for us to make the faith choice to join Him in His work of ruling all things.  As a matter of fact, if He’d taken it all back more than two thousand years ago we never would’ve been born let alone have the opportunity to be born again.

As we fight our battle against the darkness in this world we have to realize we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  And since this is the case, we need to use the weapons that God provides not the weapons we can devise.  For though we walk in the flesh, we don’t war according to the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare aren’t carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

And all this depends on what we decide to do with our salvation.  Are we going to be secret agent Christians hiding our light under a bushel so we can go along to get along?  Or, are we going to be bold warriors for Christ doing our best to share what isn’t just good news but is in fact the best news ever?

Once we’ve made the quality decision to spend our lives, the lives God has given us, sharing the light which is the light of the world with those lost in the darkness, we’ll find ourselves standing in a hurricane of resistance.  The assaults of the enemy, the assaults of the world, of our families, our friends, the government, the culture will try their best to knock us down and knock us out.  But we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us and no matter how strong the headwind against us we must do our best to stand our ground.

And having done all to stand we need to stand therefore, having truth as a belt around our waist, putting on a bulletproof vest made of righteousness, stepping into shoes designed to deliver the gospel of peace, and above all, taking the shield of faith with which we’ll be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  If we forget any of this armor, we can’t expect the enemy to play fair and not attack us in that area.  We can’t say, “Don’t hit me there I’m not prepared.”

Yes, in the world we will have tribulations but we can be assured Christ has overcome the world.

Years ago, I wrote a song that expressed all this in a slightly more artistic form:

When we see the darkness all around us

We don’t wring our hands and cry about sin

We just light one candle it will burn by faith

Then we ask the Holy Ghost in.

It’s a battlefield brother

It’s a battlefield sister

It’s a battlefield not a recreation hall.

There’s nothing that the enemy can do or say

That could make me give up on God

And when I’m tested, I know I’m never tested

More than what I’ve got to handle the job.

It’s a battlefield brother

It’s a battlefield sister

It’s a battlefield not a recreation hall

God knew we can’t reach high enough

So He sent Jesus down to us.

And He knew we can’t be right enough

So He gave us His righteousness.

It’s a battlefield brother

It’s a battlefield sister

It’s a battlefield not a recreation hall

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2020 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

January 14, 2020

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics, Politiocal Philosophy, Religion, Uncategorized.
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Trump the Pro-life President

Ever since the abomination of Roe V. Wade unleashed a holocaust of death upon America those of us who value life have prayed for a leader who could and would do what they should.  Back in 1973 when the Burger Court turned the Constitution on its head by discovering a constitutional right to kill the unborn then President Nixon didn’t even make a public statement.  Privately he said that in some instances abortion was necessary.

Since then we’ve elected several presidents who said publicly that they were pro-life: Reagan, George I, and George II.  All three took some steps to restrict federal funding for abortion and made public statements condemning abortion and boosting the pro-life cause.  All three gave taped addresses to the massive annual Right-to-life march in Washington filled with values and voters.

Of course, since the slaughter of the innocents gained the federal stamp of approval we’ve had every Democrat candidate champion the freedom to choose death.  And we’ve had two who made it to the White House: Clinton and Obama.  Once there they both proudly opened the spigot from the Treasury to the abortion mills forcing all taxpayers to pour billions into the industrial scale elimination of generations of Americans.

Then came Trump.

Unlike other politicians who tell us what we want to hear and then forget what they said until they need our votes again, President Trump works daily to fulfill his campaign pledges.  Many pro-life people worked hard to elect President Trump. That hard work has paid off for the pro-life movement and the unborn! Here are just some of the pro-life accomplishments of President Trump and his Administration.

One vital pledge he continues to make a reality is his oft repeated pledge to only appoint pro-life Justices to the Supreme Court.  So far, he’s appointed Justices Neil Gorsuch and Justice Brett Kavanaugh.  Both are constitutional originalists who believe in the sanctity of life.  In addition, President Trump nominated another 180 pro-life federal judges on the Circuit and District courts.  Thanks to the failure of President Obama to fill open seats and President Trump’s untiring efforts to do his job this is more than any other President has done at this point in his first term.

Another promise repeatedly made by other Republican presidents but only half-heartedly kept, President Trump follows through in a big way depriving the abortion industry of billions of dollars.  This is Trump’s three-pronged assault on the money the abortionists earn from their industrial scale destruction of life.  First, the Donald signed legislation permitting states to defund Planned Parenthood of Title X family planning.  Second, he issued an Executive Order giving states the option to withhold Medicaid and other federal money from organizations that perform abortions, including Planned Parenthood.  And third, he also issued the Protect Life Rule which cuts Title X funding on the federal level of Planned Parenthood and the rest of the abortion industry.

Reacting to the revelations of Project Veritas’ (undercover videos concerning the sale of body parts obtained from aborted infants by Planned Parenthood) President Trump changed federal funding rules regarding research.  According to the new guidelines, federal funds can no longer support research using the body parts of children killed by abortion.

Reversing the Obama Administration’s pro-abortion policy, President Trump reinstated and expanded the “Mexico City Policy.”  The Bush-era Mexico City Policy protected approximately $500 million in spending.  The expanded Trump policy protects over $8.8 billion in federal overseas aide from funding abortion.  He also took aim at one of the premier pro-abortion organizations in the world when he stopped funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).  By these vigorous steps our president ensures that our tax dollars are not funding the abortion industry overseas across all global health spending, not just family planning dollars.

Under Dr. Ben Carson the Trump Administration’s Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) issued a rule requiring that insurers inform their customers whether the plan they’re buying covers abortion.

President Trump created a new office in the HHS for Conscience and Religious Freedom.  Now people who under Obamacare insurance regulations are forced to participate in abortion, can have their rights explained and protected more effectively.

President Trump issued rules protecting employers from the Obamacare “HHS Mandate” that forced them to pay for abortion-inducing drugs in the health insurance plans they offer their employees.

Starting with his choice of Mike Pence as his Vice-President Mr. Trump has appointed strong pro-life advocates across his administration. Most of the others don’t make the headlines.  However, they’re making and implementing policies and practices advancing the right to life of the unborn.

President Trump continues the battle for life day-after-day.  He consistently leads the way advocating that Congress pass such bills as the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.  And he fights for the full removal of federal funding from Planned Parenthood across-the-board.

And not only does President Trump battle for life in the swamp he encourages the movement as no American leader has since Ronaldus Magnus.  At his packed rallies from sea-to-shining-sea the President encourages us all by speaking in plain terms about the abortion issue, rather than other so-called leaders who use vague abstractions and veiled group-speak so as not to upset their media critics too much.  And time-after-time both the President and Vice-President attend and address pro-life events including the March for Life.  They also host meetings and receptions for pro-life leaders in the White House and other high-profile locations.

Long have we sought someone who would lead the pro-life movement toward our goal of ending the massacre of the unborn.  I believe God does not judge societies by the sin that exist in them for the same sin lurks within all humans.  I believe instead that God judges societies by the sins which they condone.  God destroyed Judah because they sacrificed the children to the pagan god Moloch.  Today millions of American children are sacrificed on the altar of convenience, self-will, and vanity.  The blood of the innocents cry out to God.

If God does not judge us for the slaughter of the innocents it seems like He should offer an apology to Sodom and Gomorrah.  But we who fear the Lord should not refrain for praying that God’s hand move against this terrible national sin.  For though a thousand may fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand it shall not come near you.  And the truth is that our Father has told us “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

Don’t despair.  Instead rejoice for we finally have a president leading the way out of the darkness of infanticide and back to the light of life.  So, keep the faith, keep the peace for we shall overcome, and why worry when you can pray.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

 

 

A New You for a New Year  January 8, 2020

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Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired?  Are you facing a new year and thinking, “Why?”   Have you ever looked at your life and thought, “I wish I could start this all over again”?  When we come to the end of ourselves, we have the chance to find the beginning of everything else.

Every person is the center of their own universe simply because that’s the only vantage point available to anyone who has ever lived.  Usually by the time we’re old enough to know anything we’ve figured out that just because we’re the center of observable reality that reality doesn’t revolve around us.  And it doesn’t take long to realize that the cold machinery of the space-time continuum takes as little heed to us as we do to the microbes in the ground we walk over every day.

The cold impersonal avalanche of happenstance leads any thinking person to the question, “What’s it all about?”  The inscrutability of the carnival mirror maze we perceive as reality leads many to conclude there is no meaning, there is no point, and there is no reason.  All there is is what it is and that’s all that there is.  A sort of Popeye philosophy that leaves us constantly wandering about looking for the magic can of spinach that’ll make us strong enough to break through the mirrors to scan an open horizon with a clear vista.  On our own it always seems to be just around the next corner.

This is where revelation comes in.  A mouse in a maze never sees the whole picture.  It only sees the corridor it happens to be in at the time.  And though it searches and searches it always seems like someone has moved the cheese.  Only through revelation can we see enough of the puzzle to learn which piece needs to go next to which piece to make the picture whole.

Lucky for us there is a God who created all this and He wants to allow us to see behind the curtain of the physical giving us a glimpse of the spiritual, which is the essence of it all.

I’m a Christian.  By that I mean I have confessed Jesus Christ as my personal Lord, and I believe in my heart that God has raised Him from the dead.  Because of that I believe I am saved, I am born-again, and I have a free pass out of hell and into heaven.  And on a daily basis I do my best to follow Christ: loving and forgiving myself and the world around me. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

This wasn’t always the case.  Until I was thirty years old I was an unapologetic reprobate, and an atheist who cursed a God I proudly declared I didn’t believe in.  Then I had a personal encounter with Christ which led me to study the Bible, which led to my confession of Jesus Christ as Lord and my unswerving belief that God has raised Him from the dead.  Through this I was born again receiving a brand-new life here and now and that afore mentioned free pass out of hell and into heaven.

I immediately transitioned from hopelessness to hopefulness, from despair to joy, from dread to expectancy.  This is such a good deal I can’t bear to keep it to myself.

My words and my testimony will not get you anything.  They can’t give you a new you.  Only God’s Spirit can do that.  We can’t think our way to God.  It’s only through His revelation that we can get beyond the example of a blind man trying to picture an elephant by touching its trunk or tail.  The only way I have found to find God is through His word.  Think about it. If God only wrote one book out of all the billions of books in the world doesn’t it seem logical that it would be the most important thing we could possibly read?  If we deny that His word is His word we close the door and throw away the key.

You might say, “Why do I need to be born again?

Here are some reasons and their biblical support

  1. Jesus Loved you enough to die for you

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

  1. You cannot even please God if you’re not born again.

Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn’t pleased at being ignored.

  1. You will be living under God’s wrathif you’re not born again.

Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.

That is why whoever accepts and trusts the Son gets in on everything: life complete and forever! And that is also why the person who avoids and distrusts the Son is in the dark and doesn’t see life. All he experiences of God is darkness, and an angry darkness at that.

  1. You’ll be under the control of the devil if you’re not born again.

In which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,

  1. You will experience the second death if you’re not born again.

Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.  And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire, and if anyone’s name is not found in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

Jesus Christ is always there for us. He’ll answer us anytime we call him. He stands at the door of our heart and knocks.  Open the door today and He’ll come in.

As a new year begins, we can all begin a new life.   The mistakes of our past don’t have to be the blueprint of our future.

One of the most important truths in Christianity is that God loves us so much that He sought us out before we even start trying to find him.  Referring to Himself in a title reserved for the Messiah Jesus said, “the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”  He also said, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you.”

Since He chose us, all we must do is choose Him and that new life starts right now.  That is the Way.  I have shared what the Bible says we must do to be saved; confess and believe.  But it isn’t about a formula.  Being a follower of Christ is much more than that.  It’s following Christ.  He said “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.”  because as He also said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  Christ doesn’t show us the way.  He is the Way to a new you for a new year … or any year … any time.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

 

 

2020 Hindsight Will Judge These Predictions January 6, 2020

Posted by Dr. Robert Owens in Politics, Politiocal Philosophy, Religion, Uncategorized.
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My favorite America Philosopher, Yogi Berra once said, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”

With that truism in mind let me begin doing the heavy lifting and tough stuff of being the Historian of the Future:

As I predicted before his inauguration our President has been impeached by a Democrat dominated House and no matter what the official charges may say the charge is that they don’t like him, and Hillary was supposed to win.  In the coming year President Trump will be acquitted by the Senate and go on to win a landslide victory in November.  His coattails will sweep in a Republican Congress.  This Republican majority won’t be diverted or perverted by the likes of Paul Ryan and they’ll work diligently with President Trump to deliver the wall and other promises designed to keep America great.

Though the Democrats, the Deep State, and their Media publicists continue to try and manufacture a recession just before the election the economy will finish the year strong with the Trump Bump carrying us into a new decade.

President Trump will complete his first term as the first president since Carter to finish his first term with out taking us into a new war.

In the 2020 election President Trump will receive the highest percentage of Black and Hispanic votes of any Republican since FDR.

Unless there is a forum devised to take the process out of the hands of the highly partisan supposedly nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates President Trump will skip these opportunities for the democrats who pretend to be journalists to tip the scales in their candidate’s favor with unfair questions, characterizations, and inuendo.

The stock market will follow the impeachment show.  If it looks like the President will be removed it will fall if it looks like he will be exonerated it will rise.

Same thing with the election.  Trump winning = stock market goes up.  Trump losing = stock market goes down.

If the neo-cons and democrats manage to manufacture a war Trump can’t avoid or if they succeed in sinking the economy, all bets are off and Venezuela here we come.

China will continue to swallow Africa, stamp out freedom in Hong Kong, intimidate Taiwan, sign a major treaty with the Philippians, accelerate their defense build-up, launch more probes to the moon, and violate every trade deal they sign with the USA.

Putin will orchestrate the reunification of Russia and Belarus opening the door for him to remain in the presidency beyond the end of his second second term.

Brexit is a done deal. After which Britain will sign a new trade treaty with the USA as it rebuilds its links with Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

Italy will swing back to the right.

Hungary and Poland will continue to turn away from the centralizing bureaucrats in Brussels.

The climate cult will continue to chatter away while the world spins on as usual.

Sweden’s society will buckle under the weight of EU mandated refugee resettlement.

Great Britain will face increasing calls for both Scottish independence and the unification of Northern Ireland with the Republic of Ireland.

Catalonia will continue its efforts to break free of Spain.

Libya will degenerate into a full-blown civil war with outside powers fighting a proxy war for control of its oil.

Japan will begin a major re-armament campaign.

The declining purchase of Fed T-Bills by foreigners means that the Fed’s monetization of our ever-increasing debt will accelerate in 2020.

Marijuana will become legal in several more states.

The United Methodist Church will split over gay marriage and the ordination of homosexuals.

The Roman Catholic Church will be wracked by scandals at the highest levels of the Vatican.

Today is tomorrow’s yesterday and it’s all now to God.  So no matter what happens in the coming year if we hold on to Him we’ll eventually trade this transitory here for an eternity there.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2020 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

The Reason for the Reason  December 16, 2019

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Frosty the Snowman asked Rudolph the Reindeer, “Do you think Christmas is too commercialized?”  The Elf on the Shelf interjected, “Is the Pope Catholic?”  Santa put down his milk and cookies and added, “Ho, Ho, Ho.”

As loyal media mavens of 21st Century America pop culture our perceptions of the Christmas season have been shaped as much by George running down the main street of Bedford Falls and Scrooge buying the biggest goose in town as by anything in the Bible.  We spend our time driving the kids around to see the lights, decorating the tree, and shopping with precious little time left to even mention Jesus or the significance of His birth.

Seeking shelter from a crass and crude culture degenerating from indifference to outright hostility to God many of us retreat into a warm and fuzzy Currier and Ives Norman Rockwell bubble of accepted Christmas traditions based more in a Dr. Seuss Disney media than reality.  To ward off the black Friday commercialism that consumes us, we duck behind the “Jesus is the reason for the season,” mantra.  As if this alone was enough to lead us not into temptation.

As we hide behind our little Jesus catch phrase with the pious feelings, even this fleeting mention of the Name of Jesus inspires, and we should ask ourselves how often this spiritual sleight of hand gives us an opportunity to share the reality of Christmas.  Or has it merely become the Christian version of the oft repeated insincerely asked “Hi, how are you?” catch phrase of Xmas?  Is it time we admit this verbal deflection is more about making us feel like we’re doing something to combat the conquest of Christmas by the grasping spirit of conspicuous consumption by making a dent in the cacophony of crass commercialism?

The enemy can’t defeat God.  He cannot overcome God’s plan and he can’t snatch us out of God’s hand.  Just as in the garden when he confused Eve and led her down the primrose path to perdition, the enemy’s power is based on deception.  Afflicted with spiritual ADD most of us careen from one shiny object to the next while falling for fads, trooping after trends and hypnotized by the next new thing.  The accuser of mankind has never missed a church service, and his favorite disguise after an angel of light is the puffed-up rituals, ceremonies, and displays of the sideshow religion he pedals in place of the simple gospel.

Peddled by hucksters who prey upon the potatoes who grow so comfortably on our couches, the glitzy glamour and heartwarming familiarity of cultural Christmas might have more spirituality than a Grinch stealing presents but not nearly as much as Linus sharing biblical truth.

So, the next time we use our “Jesus is the reason for the season” shield to deflect the hooey and hype seeking to drown the most miraculous birth in History let’s prayerfully project the reason more than the season.  Just in case we’ve missed it here’s the reason for the reason:

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child.  So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered.  And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.  Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.  For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

“Glory to God in the highest,

And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

 

He Touched Me December 9, 2019

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God’s immediate immensity overwhelms me.  He’s present everywhere and yet He’s present to me.  There are more planets, and stars, and galaxies than we have a number to describe.  God created them all.  He upholds them by the power of His word.  And yet He touched me.  He touched me and now I’m no longer the same.

The God shaped hole in my life ached for Him even when I denied Him.  Stumbling like a blind man in a world filled with light I couldn’t see what was around me and I couldn’t see where I was going.  Landing in a ditch I thought the fetid water was clear and the over grown wilderness of weeds was a garden.  Then He touched me and oh what joy filled my soul.

Raising me up from my graveyard of sin He gave me a new life, gave me my soulmate as a wife, and allowed me to work in His garden.  And since I’ve met this blessed savior, since he’s cleansed and made me whole I’ll never cease to praise him I’ll shout it while eternity rolls, “He touched me, Oh He touched me, and oh the joy that floods my soul! Something happened and now I know He touched me and made me whole.”

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

Is Thanksgiving All About Receiving? November 27, 2019

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In millions of homes throughout America families and friends join to together to celebrate a cherished holiday, Thanksgiving.  In countless homes people go through various types of rituals and traditions including taking time to share what they’re thankful for.  If we listen to those often hastily prepared statements we’ll find the vast majority of them refer to what’s been received.

“I’m thankful for my family.”  “I’m thankful for health.”  “I’m thankful for peace, prosperity, safety, security, a home, a car, a boyfriend, a girlfriend, etc.”

It’s good to give thanks for all we’ve receive.  It’s even better to give thanks for the Giver and to recognize that it’s all a gift.

The greatest gift of all is Jesus.  God gave Him to us as our Savior.  It’s through His stripes we’re healed.  It’s through Him making Himself poor that we became rich.  And it’s through the indwelling Spirit of God that we have access into the wisdom of the ages.  And that wisdom teaches us that it’s better to give than receive.

So this Thanksgiving as we share what we’re thankful for perhaps we should be thankful for all the opportunities we have to give.  The Word of God tells us plainly, “If you grasp and cling to life on your terms, you’ll lose it, but if you let that life go, you’ll get life on God’s terms.”  In another place it says, “Give away your life; you’ll find life given back, but not merely given back—given back with bonus and blessing. Giving, not getting, is the way.”

All around us a world in need of God stumbles through the inky void of uncertainty not knowing why bad things happen to good people, why the evil seem to triumph over the good, or where they’re going when they die.  And we have the answer.  His name is Jesus.

So how do we share what isn’t just good news but the best news ever with the lost and broken around us?

It isn’t by trying to shove a Bible down their throat.  It isn’t by beating them up with doctrines they don’t know repeated in religious speak.  It isn’t by trying to scare them to death with stories of what will happen when they die.  When we use these time-tested mistakes while trying to share the most beautiful truth in the world, that Jesus came to bring us life, our success rate is perfectly expressed by my favorite band, Casting Crowns, “Jesus, friend of sinners, the truth’s become so hard to see.  The world is on their way to You, but they’re tripping over me.”

It’s not about who we are it’s about who He is.  It isn’t about what we’ve done it’s about what He did.  And it isn’t about what we get it’s about what we give.

I wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!  May the Lord bless you and keep you may He make His face shine upon you.  As we gather with our loved ones on a day set aside for giving thanks instead of offering a litany of what we’ve received let’s give thanks for opportunities to give.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

How Than Shall We Pray November 19, 2019

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One of my favorite sayings is, “Why worry when you can pray.”  I know that the Bible says, “Don’t worry,” more times than it says, “Don’t steal,” and we all know what stealing is.

Prayer is how we talk with God.  Notice I said talk “with” not talk “to.”  We come to God in prayer bringing our praise, our thanksgiving, and our needs.  And it should also be a time when we listen.  It’s supposed to be a two way conversation.  And since God knows everything and we don’t perhaps listening should be a bigger part of the process than most of us make it?

How than shall we pray?

This is a question Christians have been asking since Jesus walked among us.  And God’s Word doesn’t leave us to stand around scratching our head.  It gives us some clear-cut straight forward teaching.  Matthew (in The Message) puts it like this, “The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They’re full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. Don’t fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply.”  In The New King James we’re told, “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”

In other words there is no magic formula.  There is no surefire incantation we’re supposed to memorize and repeat like a mantra.  Instead we’re supposed to talk with God on a one-to-one personal basis and everyone’s personality and circumstances are unique.  Which brings us right back to the age-old question; How than shall we pray?

After telling us what prayer should not be Jesus told us what it should be.  The Message puts it this way, “With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:” and the New King James once again references the way heathens pray telling us, “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.  In this manner, therefore, pray:”

Notice one version tells us “Like this:” and another says, “In this manner, therefore, pray:”

Neither one tells us, “Repeat these words.”  One says “Like this,” or in this way.  And the other says, “In this manner.”  The clear meaning of this when interpreted through the admonition found in the immediately preceding passage whether the “Don’t fall for that nonsense” of The Message or the “do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do” of The New King James is that turning what follows next into a formula or a mantra is the exact opposite of what Jesus was trying to teach us about prayer.

What follows these warnings about praying repetitiously like a religious robot or a magician’s apprentice is Jesus’ teaching about how to pray not necessarily about what to pray or as it has come down to us through religious tradition, the “Lord’s Prayer.”

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

This is a model that we can analyze.  Using this analysis we can try to understand its components.  We can accept these as necessary components of prayer.

Some say that the so-called Lord’s Prayer is the meaning of the 23rd Psalm embodied within a prayer.

The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the till waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Forever.

There are many ways to break down the Lord’s Prayer into its essential components.  Here’s one way:

  1. A personal relationship with God— “Our Father”

 

  1. Faith                                “in heaven”

 

  1. Worship—                          “hallowed be Your name”

 

  1. Expectation—                    “Your kingdom come”

 

  1. Submission—                     “Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven”

 

  1. Petition—                            “give us this day our daily bread”

 

  1. Confession—                      “and forgive us our debts”

 

  1. Compassion—                    “as we forgive our debtors”

 

  1. Dependence—                    “and lead us not into temptation, but                                             deliver us from evil”

 

  1. Acknowledgment—          “for Yours is the kingdom, and the power,                                       and the glory forever

Seeing this as a model Jesus gave us when teaching us how to pray it makes sense to see complete prayers as having these components.  However, taking the message of His teaching in the same passage of scripture to heart tells us that the idea of memorizing or repeating endlessly the same words like a mantra is the opposite of what He intended.

It’s good to remember that the shortest prayer in the Bible, “Lord, save me!” was answered immediately.  So we can see it isn’t the length or a certain sequence of words that brings an answer.

So, How than shall we pray?

We should pray from the heart with pure intentions seeking intimacy with Him not merely fulfilling an obligation or checking a box on some spiritual scorecard.  If we seek Him we’ll find Him.  If we draw near to Him He’ll draw near to us.  The most important aspect of our prayer is not what we want it’s who we want.  If we seek Him and His kingdom He assures us that all we’ll ever need is there when we need it.  He’s an on-time God.

So when we pray let’s not use vain repetitions as the heathen do.  For they think they’ll be heard for their many words instead let’s just talk with Daddy openly, intimately, and often.  And let’s give Him the space to speak to us.  We’ll do well to apply the wisdom of God not only to our conversations with others but also to our conversations with Him, let’s be swift to hear and slow to speak.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2019 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

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