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The Day I Was Born Again  September 8, 2021

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I can remember when I was born-again.  I came up from me knees a new creature living in a new creation, old things had passed away and everything had become new.  I had this life changing experience in a church where that kind of thing was not supposed to happen.   

In this church they shared the Lord’s Supper at every service.  This was the first time I felt I was ready to partake of the bread and wine.  While kneeling at the altar rail I reflected upon my recent study of the four Gospels.  I had come to a place where I thought this Gospel is either the truth or it’s a lie.  If it’s the truth it is undoubtedly the most important message ever delivered.  If it was a lie, it was just one among many. 

As a person who had studied History daily for many years, I knew that all of the writers of the Gospels had been martyred.  This led me to reflect, “If these men had written a lie, they would have known it was a lie and that Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, there is no salvation, and the whole thing was a hoax.” 

I also knew that before they were martyred, they were given a choice, say what they’d written was a lie and worship the emperor or stand by what they’d written and die.  All of them chose to die.   The thought that four men would all choose to die to promote or perpetuate a hoax didn’t sound or feel believable to me. 

All this had been running round and round in my mind for weeks.  Finally, as I knelt at that altar I decided, “It has to be true.”  Right then and there I prayed, “Jesus, I want you to be the Lord of my life.  I want to give my life to you.  I repent of my sins, and I ask you to save me.”  That was it.  I believed God had raised Jesus from the grave and I accepted Him as my Lord. 

Instantly I was translated into an ecstasy of joy.  I raised my hands and I praised God for hearing my prayer and for saving me.  From that moment on I knew beyond all doubt that Jesus is God, that He came to earth to save the lost, and that He will meet us wherever we are and accept us no matter what we’ve done.  From that moment to this I have known the intimacies of the new birth and no one nor no thing can ever separate me from my Savior. 

That was what happened on the inside deep within my being as my spirit which had been dead to God came alive.  On the outside I stayed at the altar after everyone else left and returned to their seats.  I stayed there throughout the rest of the service and for about another half hour after everyone left the sanctuary and moved into the fellowship hall. 

I was completely oblivious to any sound or movement around me.  I had no awareness of the passage of time.  I was bathed in the joy of God, surrounded by His presence, communing with my Savior, wrapped in His love. 

When I returned to normal consciousness I got up, I looked around dumbfounded at the empty sanctuary.  To me I had only been at the altar for a few moments.  I followed the sound of people talking into the fellowship hall.  As I entered, I began praising God.  I told them all, “I’ve just been born again!” 

Everyone, the pastor included looked at me as if I was crazy.  You would have thought I had just said, “A unicorn jumped over a rainbow and gave me some candy.”  The President of the Church Council told me, “We don’t go for any of that Born-Again nonsense here.  If you’re going to act like that drag it down the street someplace else.” 

I was confused.  From my reading of the scriptures everyone must be born again if they want to see God and His kingdom and here was a leader in the Church telling me this life changing experience was somehow out of place in this particular church.   

But I knew what I had just experienced, and no one was going to convince me that God hadn’t just touched me, that He hadn’t wiped away my guilt, and made me new.  No one could convince me that I hadn’t just been born again. 

The Pastor seeing my look of confusion took me aside and asked me what had happened.  When I described the miracle as clearly as I could he told me it was probably an emotional response to a thought-provoking sermon. 

Imagine if you lived on an island where everyone crawls instead of walks.  It has always been this way, and this is the only way anyone can ever remember it being.  Then one day a person stands up and starts to walk.  Everyone is shocked.  They are scandalized.  The leaders of the community express the thoughts of the majority, “I mean whoever heard of such a thing, someone walking instead of crawling.”  Turning on the lone walker they cry in unison, “Get back down here and crawl like you’re supposed to!  What if others start this walking business?  Do you want to destroy our traditions?  What if the children see you and start walking instead of crawling?” 

It’s not that crawling is better than walking.  We all know that it isn’t.  It’s just that this is the way things have always been so that is seen as the way they should be.  Anything different is rejected out of hand, no consideration, no inner reflection, no comparison of two different options just instantaneous and total rejection. 

This is just how it seems when people who have never experienced the new birth, have never experienced the unrivaled intimacies of a loving God bringing life to the dead spirit we inherited from Adam try to tell us who have, to settle down and follow traditions. 

Instead of the eternal everlasting death we all deserve due to our Adamic inheritance and our own sin God in His infinite mercy and love gives us eternal life.  And He has not only given us life He gives us the very life of Christ the life that defeated death.  In a foreshadowing of the life-giving power of Christ once some Israelites were about to burry a man when a sudden attack of the enemy forced them to forego using a new grave and they placed the body in the tomb of Elisha the prophet.  As soon as the body of the dead man touched the bones of the prophet the man came back to life.  And so it is with every spiritually dead person who comes to the cross of Christ who surrenders themselves and accepts Jesus as Lord. 

We must never let anyone convince us that humanity can be perfected outside of God’s plan of salvation and through Jesus Christ.  Nothing, not education, politics, economics, genetic engineering, theology, philosophy, or psychology can forge a way to life for the spiritually dead except through Christ.  All of these things can be helpful tools.  They can all help us make sense of a fallen and disordered world.  But they cannot save us.  They cannot change us from fallen and lost people into what we were created to be: children of the Most High God. 

And it is purely through grace that this is even possible.  We cannot earn our way.  There is no twelve-step plan to salvation.  There is no self-help program that will deliver us from evil.  In His great love for humanity God opened the way through Christ’s sacrifice and His resurrection for the dead to live, the fallen to rise, the blind to see, and the lost to be found.   

May every one of us, descendants of Adam, the lost and the spiritually dead repent of our sins, turn from the world, and accept the glorious gift God offers us.  Let’s embrace the life Christ has won for us. 

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2021 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook, Twitter, Gab, or MeWe @ Drrobertowens, or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens 

August 10, 2021

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We Can’t Do It On Our Own 

There is something about us that makes us want to make everything about us.  If there is any way to make it appear to anyone, everyone, or even just ourselves we will move any mountain, swim any sea, or rationalize any action to see ourselves as the center of the universe.  And salvation falls into this same pattern. 

For this reason, every religion man has ever devised has been built upon works.  We must earn our way to heaven.  That way we can take the credit. 

I taught Comparative Religion for several colleges.  During the semester as we covered the major and many minor religions of the world I would right on the board a section on each one.  In these sections I wrote what it takes to receive salvation or make it to heaven in these different religions.  At the end I asked the students to review all the sections and see if they could spot one striking similarity and one striking difference. 

Inevitably at least one, often several, would discern that every religion except one required people to earn their salvation.  And only one, Christianity, said salvation comes through faith alone. 

Several times after this exercise students sought me out after class and accepted the Lord as their personal Savior.  One time a woman brought in her whole family, and they all confessed Christ as Lord and professed their belief that God had raised Him from the dead. 

We know there is a profound and life altering difference between a mental assent that Christ is Lord and a knowledge that God raised Him from the dead and a living faith in these two realities.  The very faith we use to accept and profess is a gift from God.  However, God gave us our intellect.  He doesn’t mean for us to check our mind at the door when we enter His presence. 

Learning the truth is a fundamental step towards accepting the truth. 

The heart of the matter is a matter of the heart.  Humanity does not need another teacher, a leader, or a new way of looking at life.  The problem is that since the fall of Adam man has been spiritually dead.  We are separated by an uncrossable gulf from God and each other.  What we need is spiritual re-birth and reunification of fractured humanity.  

Once we are re-created in Christ our feet are on the highway of holiness leading to life in, through, and with our Savior, but we aren’t merely passive passengers along for the ride.  Because once we’re saved, we have work to do. 

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2021 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Parler, Facebook, Twitter, Gab, or MeWe @ Drrobertowens, or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens 

Don’t Just Live Be Alive August 3, 2021

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All of humanity have physical life while we spend our moment upon the stage of the world.  Most have a soulish, or mental life whether we exercise it or not.  But only those who have been born-again and united with Christ have spiritual life. 

Try to imagine a human being who has no wisdom or understanding, no mental activity beyond what it takes to move, eat, and exist.  This person might be in great shape, but their true humanity would be gone, and they would exist more as an animal than as a human. 

This is how it is when we have not been born from above or re-born of the spirit. We may be in great shape, we may even be famous, or rich, handsome, beautiful, and acclaimed by all but we wouldn’t be a child of God.  We would be dead in our spirit and separated from all that truly makes life worth living: union with our Creator. 

Like casting pearls before swine trying to explain spiritual things to anyone who hasn’t been joined to the Body of Christ and received the Holy Spirit is like trying to hold the opposite ends of a magnet together, they repulse each other by their very nature. 

Think for a moment of any funeral you’ve ever attended.  There was grief present.  There may have been tears.  There might even have been stunned silence as the mourners contemplated the suddenness of death and the transitory nature of lie.  One thing that is never there though is the one in the coffin taking any notice of any of this.   

And that’s just how it is with the spiritually dead.  The life of God’s Spirit is going on all around them.  His Spirit is upholding and maintaining the integrity of all creation.  His Spirit is alive and working in all the born-again Christians walking around them all day every day.   

There is no more recognition of the passage, the work, or the presence of God’s Holy Spirit among the lost than there is recognition of all the life going on around a corpse in a casket.  The spiritually dead read the Bible as it was just another book.  They think of God as if He were a moral principle, the force, or a myth.  They think of being born-again as something other people do, something that makes no sense, or else they don’t think about it all.   

A person who is blind isn’t startled when you turn on a light.  A person who is deaf doesn’t jump when you yell at them.  It’s the same with those who are spiritually dead and living comfortably in sin, they couldn’t care less that God is holy and that He will not abide sin.  They are neither frightened of the consequences of their sin nor are they enthralled with the rewards of salvation.  They are blind.  They are deaf.  They are dead.  When we speak of the deep things of God to these walking dead, we might as well be speaking to a brick wall.  We are casting our pearls before swine.  There is only one message we should seek to share with the lost: repent of your sins, accept Jesus as your Savior, and find life. 

The whole meaning of the Gospel, the good news delivered to humanity through Jesus Christ, is seen in His resurrection.   

Sin, death, and the devil are defeated when Jesus triumphed over them in the pit of hell disarming principalities and powers making a public spectacle of them as He led captivity captive.  We must never forget that He was perfectly sinless and that He was delivered to the executioner for our transgressions and then He was raised for our justification. 

Jesus didn’t come to die and then rise again to raise our awareness or further our education.  He didn’t live a sinless life and then suffer for the sinful merely to provide us with a moral guide.  God didn’t sacrifice His only Son to establish a cultural tradition.  No, the passion of the Christ happened so that humanity may learn the truth about God’s love for us and His provision of a way to return to Him and become His children.  This is the truth, and the truth has been revealed so that we may be free. 

When someone has been missing for a certain length of time the authorities begin looking for them.  If when they find them, they’re dead, after notifying their nearest family what else is there left to do except burry them.  Because once we’re dead, we begin to decay rather quickly. 

Preaching the Word without the anointing of the Holy Spirit is no more than searching for dead bodies.  For without the Spirit there is no life.  An old story says that once a man had a heart attack and died in a spiritually vacant church and it took the EMTs half an hour to figure out which one was the physically dead among all the spiritually dead. 

Having scoured the highways and the byways for those willing to give up an hour on Sunday morning and pay their tithes these blind leaders of the blind can do no more with the breathing corpses than burry them in an upholstered pew.  They preach a socially relevant something being careful to end the service in time to make it to the local buffet before all the other stained-glass graveyards get out.   

It’s amazing but true, many who have never experienced the new birth will dispute with those of us who have what it is, how it operates, and what it does within us.  Leave the laws, traditions, and ceremonies of the world behind and find the freedom that God wants you to have in Christ Jesus and don’t just live, be alive. 

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2021 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Parler, Facebook, Twitter, Gab, or MeWe @ Drrobertowens, or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens 

Here We Are May 10, 2021

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For sixty years I’ve tried to warn people that unless we as Americans woke up and started paying attention our listing ship of state was going to crash into the iceberg of socialist authoritarianism.  I held up the freedom and the uniqueness of our Republic, the equality it proclaimed, the prosperity it produced, and the liberty it protected.  I extoled, cajoled, and foretold the coming of this long dark winter of our discontent.  I tried to use reason, satire, and sarcasm and yet … here we are. 

Fifty years of Cold War destroyed the Soviet Union. Twenty-nine years of victory destroyed the United States.  All of our bravado, bluster, and hubris has accomplished is to make the post-Stalinist Nikita Khrushchev, “The Butcher of the Ukraine” into a prophet.  He told us several things long years ago that we Cold Warriors laughed off as the rantings of a homicidal megalomaniac.  Now they sound like a fire bell clanging in the night or the mournful peal for whom the bell tolls.  Here are a few things Stalin’s clown, JFK’s nemesis, and our blood-soaked communist Jerimiah told us:   

  • “You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism. We won’t have to fight you. We’ll so weaken your economy until you’ll fall like overripe fruit into our hands.”  
  • “We do not have to invade the United States, we will destroy you from within.”   
  • “The United States will eventually fly the Communist red flag…The American people will hoist it themselves.”   

And as if pulling a page from the secret plan of the Masters of the Universe, he also said, “The press is our chief ideological weapon.”  

I have spent decades blowing the trumpet.  Many others have stood upon the wall and warned us that the enemy of freedom was already within the gates.  Over and over America has been warned.  And after all of that, the center has broken, the citadel has fallen, and according to the woke world rising all around us, we are now the barbarians within the gates. 

So much for the chimera of reality that is the material world.  What is here and now is merely what is here and now.  Like distorted images we see in a cracked carnival mirror or the mirage of an oasis in the desert the shifting fog of history surrounding us is but a pale representation of God’s reality.  The lying spirit of this world tries to tell us all truth is relative.  The Spirit of Truth tells us, “… you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” 

Now for the rest of the story. 

For forty years I’ve been shouting this from the rooftops, “Jesus Christ is Lord!”  All the rest, everything is just window dressing.  This is the only truth that really matters.  For as the old saying goes, “All things will pass, only those things done in Christ will last.”   

The politics of this world are as fruitless as a dog chasing its tail.  We’re gazing at our navel, rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, enjoying a first-class seat on the Hindenburg.  We’re investing our attention on things that perish with the using and have no eternal significance at all.  I’m as guilty as anyone else.  I’ve expended much of my thought, energy, and writing skills trying to preserve the freedom and liberty we’ve enjoyed here in America and yet … here we are.  I wonder now if I ever encouraged even one person to turn off the game, set down the bear, and look at the shell game Ponzi scheme policies our elected leaders have used to herd us into the socialist corral? 

I just can’t do it anymore.  I can no longer spend the majority of my time on the minor things of life.  I will devote my life to holding out the only hope there is for humanity, the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  As Paul presents it, “… that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures …” which leads to the ultimate gift of God, salvation, “… that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” 

That’s it.  There are no Herculean tasks to accomplish.  You don’t have to meticulously follow some prearranged path of prayer or works.  Or, as the Word tells us, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast …”  It’s all Him.  He does it all.  It’s His sheer unmerited favor that opens the door, and it’s His faith that makes it possible for us to believe.  And once we are saved, we have an assignment.  We are to be His witnesses

I once was a sinner, lost and alone.  I rejected God and served only my own passions and lust.  Then Christ revealed Himself to me through His Holy Word.  He touched me and made me whole.  He gave me a new life, a Proverbs 31 wife, and a mission.  That mission is to share what He has done for me with you. 

And unlike my fruitless toiling in the fields of political punditry it will bring a harvest.  “A farmer went out to sow his seed.  As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up.  Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil.  It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow.  But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root.  Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants.  Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”  A harvest is promised and a harvest there will be. 

You see even though most will ignore this trumpet call just as they ignored the one trying to save the great experiment that was the United States, I am assured that some will choose the right way, “For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”  Another promise, a few will find it.  The Word says it, I believe, and that’s it.  After false starts, wasted efforts, and misguided attempts … here we are. 

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2021 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Parler, Facebook, Twitter, Gab, or MeWe @ Drrobertowens, or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

The 5th Law of Thermodynamics February 10, 2021

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Whether we call it “Flipping the switch,” or “Mashing the button,” when we do it, we expect the light to come on.  But if there’s no power all we end up with is a futile finger exercise.  Even a flashlight needs batteries.  No power no light.  It is the power of the sun’s thermonuclear inferno that provides the natural light illuminating life on earth.   

In the arcane world of physical cosmology and astronomy the debate about Dark Matter and Dark Energy consumes the attention of the best and the brightest even though this has about as much every day walking around relevance as the ancient question, “How many angels can dance on the head of a pin.”  We’re told that which is invisible is measurable.  Some scientists go so far as to say that only 4% of the universe is physically observable, made up of matter.  The remaining 96% they say is dark or invisible. 

We’re told if these unknown and unknowable quantities aren’t factored into our calculations our accepted laws of physics, at the universal and the infinitesimal ends of the scale, don’t work.  They just appear to work within the observable bubble scientists call “The Space-Time Continuum” or as we call it out here in the work-a-day world, “Reality.”   

In other words, though these intricate Laws of Physics may look and are presented as rock solid, they aren’t.  It’s good to remember these and all Laws of Science are just theories constantly in search of either affirmation or repudiation. 

What this tells us about the reality we observe is that science says it isn’t what it seems.  If the Dark Matter – Dark Energy theory is correct most of what is – is invisible to us.  If it isn’t true, we’re relying on science based upon physics which we know is incomplete, imprecise, and fundamentally wrong.  If the foundation is bad how can the structure built upon it be good?  If the basic assumptions of science are faulty how can we trust it to reveal the universe around us? 

Some people believe that science is based on fact and religion is based on faith.  When we learn that once quantum physics intersects with normal physics and once Dark Matter and Dark Energy collide with observable matter the claptrap of the modern scientific edifice is shown to be a house of cards built upon multiple leaps of faith disguised as logical assumptions. 

If some want to embrace theories as dogma acting as the Apostate Apostles of Scientism preaching a religion of materialism that is their right.  However, I do find the way the “If I can’t feel it, see it, or hear it; it isn’t real,” crowd twist themselves into prattling pretzels over the problem of Dark Matter and Dark Energy extremely interesting. 

The many atheists in the religion of materialism tell us Christians that believing in a world we can’t see all around us making that which we can see possible is drivel.   At the same time, they use their incantation of equations to prove that the world we see is made possible by that which we cannot see.  One of the most fascinating phenomena I’ve ever witnessed is the fact that these evangelists of physical evidence can’t see the hypocrisy of their cult-like adherence to their anti-deity dogma in the face of believing and espousing basically the same set of facts. 

Just a few questions for the High Priests of Pragmatism: 

If the universe has an end than it must have had a beginning.  Every beginning has a cause.  What was the primary cause of the universe? 

Or, if the universe is never ending doesn’t that in and of itself prove the existence of eternity? 

If the universe is infinite yet expanding where would something that is infinite expand?   

If the universe is finite yet expanding into what is it expanding? 

Our solar system is powered by the sun.  Without the sun there would be no planets, no life.  If our sun was not there, there would be no here.  

I am speaking of physical power, physical light, and physical life. 

If we turn our attention to the spiritual reality, God is the source of everything.  And Jesus Christ as the Son of God and His incarnation is the perfect physical expression of God.  Coming to sinful man Jesus was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died a sacrificial death, rose from the dead, and ascended into Heaven where He is seated right now on the right hand of God the Father.  If we repent of our sins accept Jesus as our Savior, He will cleanse us of our sin nature and unite us with Himself.  We will become one with all other believers and one with God.   

Jesus is the power of God.  And without that power there is no light and we walk in darkness.  For Jesus is the light of the world.  He is the light that shines through the darkness and the darkness can’t understand it.  We are descended from our father Adam , and we enter this world with a sin nature separated from God whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.  Unless and until we turn from the material world and embrace the spiritual, we cannot even  understand what has just been said.  It will be gibberish, the ranting of a fool.  For the spirit cannot be understood with the natural mind. 

Forsake the world of darkness and embrace the light.  Leave the City of Man and be translated to the City of God.   

The Laws of Thermodynamics are: 

The Zeroth Law: If two systems are both in thermal equilibrium with a third system, then they are in thermal equilibrium with each other. 

The First Law: The energy gained (or lost) by a system is equal to the energy lost (or gained) by its surroundings. 

The Second Law: Natural processes tend to go only one way, toward less usable energy and more disorder. 

The Third Law: A system’s entropy approaches a constant value as its temperature approaches absolute zero. 

Even in the natural scientists say that the visible is dependent upon the invisible.  That is based on their conjectures.  Christians base their beliefs on the revelation of God.  Though He reveals Himself in all creation we cannot think our way to Him.  We cannot deduce Him or imagine Him apart from His revelation for He is eternal, infinite, omnipotent, and omnipresent.  These are all attributes beyond the grasp of our finite minds.  However, because He has chosen to reveal Himself to us in and through Christ, we know the material is dependent upon the spiritual.   

Scientists say there are three laws, but we all see four.  Which brings me to, the 5th Law of Thermodynamics: No power no light.  Turn from the beggarly forces of the physical and embrace the infinite power of God and let the light of Christ blaze forth in your spirit.  Then let your life become a beacon as that light illuminates the world around you.  

No Jesus no peace.  Know Jesus know peace.   

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, Global Studies, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com  © 2021 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com   Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Parler, Facebook, Twitter, Gab, or MeWe @ Drrobertowens, or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens 

A New You for a New Year December 28, 2020

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Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired?  Have you reached the end of your rope only to find out that it’s much shorter than you imagined?  Was last year as good as you hoped it would be?  Was it as bad as you feared it would be?  Does the uncertainty of the future leave you anxious?  Has your own mortality entered like a crack in the ice in your youthful belief in personal indestructability?

But wait there’s more…

Does the randomness of good happening to bad people and bad happening to good people leave you wondering if there’s any rhyme or reason to reality?  Is looking for answers to these and many other questions like looking for needles in haystacks?  Is the quest to find meaning in life like trying to nail fog to the wall?

If you’ve rejected Christ because of Christians don’t mistake the messengers for the message.  Christ told his followers to lake His light to the world and most have spent the last 2018 years trying to build a lamp and pretending it was the light.

The message is as simple as receiving it: Confess Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead and you will be saved.

That’s it. 

It’s not about joining the right club or following the right rules.  We don’t need a seminary degree or someone with one to walk us through learning the secret handshake or the Abra Kadabra password.  And there is no magic decoder ring.  We don’t have to read the Bible from cover to cover.  We don’t have to wear the right clothes, beard, or haircut.  We don’t have to vote for the right candidates.  We don’t have to take an oath to believe the same things that everyone else who confesses Christ as Lord does.

It isn’t about being good enough.  That’s one of the great miracles of God’s economy.  While we were yet sinners Jesus came and died so that we could live.

It isn’t about becoming a religious robot who says the right things at the right time to the right people in the right place.  God is the One who created us with free choice, so we’re free to choose.  It isn’t about conformity.  God is the One who created us to be an individual and He doesn’t make junk.  We are who He created us to be.  He has placed us in a certain time and place so that we can become all He designed us to be and do all that He has called us to do.  And that means what He created, placed, and called you to be will be different than what He created, placed, and called me to be.  You see it isn’t about cookie-cutter, repeat a formula, and follow the rule book club membership. 

It’s about each of us individually confessing Jesus as Lord and each of us individually believing God raised Jesus from the dead and then learning to commune with God, to hear Him speak to us as individuals and then doing what He tells us to do.

If the questions at the beginning of this article float through our minds like storm clouds in a cloudless sky obscuring what should be clear.  Let’s give up the battle to do it on our own.  Let’s surrender and find victory in allowing God to count the victory of Jesus over sin and death to our account.

It’s so easy we can do it right here right now.  We don’t need to be in a meeting, at an altar, or in a special building.  We don’t need anyone to hold our hand or even know what we’ve done.  We will know.  God will know.  And once we’re in his hand no one can snatch us out.

I confess Jesus as Lord and I believe in my heart that God raised Him from the Dead.  That’s it.  All done.  The battle is over.  The war between us and God is over and we are one with Him.  Welcome to a new you for a new year.

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 Parler, Facebook, or Twitter @ Drrobertowens or visit Dr. Owens’ Amazon Page / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

He is the Head We Are the Body October 13, 2020

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As the body of Christ, we are His hands, His feet, and we should strive to speak His words, see with His eyes, and love with His heart. We’ve been washed in His blood and we are the redeemed.   

And this is not merely a spiritual renewal though that is the foundation of all that flows from it.  We are renewed when we reckon ourselves dead to this world and alive to God.  When we put off the old man born in sin in the line of Adam and are re-born in the likeness of our Savior, Jesus Christ, the second Adam

This action: cleansing the sinner of all guilt and making us able to stand in the throne room in the very presence of God with no shame or feelings of inadequacy may seem extravagant.  Paul tells us that we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, and that all this is not some hap-hazard addendum.  No, it flows directly from all God’s wisdom and prudence.  

This action on God’s part not only impacts the spiritual renewal of the believer.  It also leads to a physical and mental renewal which the believer experiences here-and-now.  This is the redemption of our bodies.   

And just as Christ is redeemed now so is the believer who is in Christ Jesus.  Our bodies will someday be glorified fully in the presence of God, but in the here and now we taste the first fruit of our redemption in the total renewing of our lives.   For as members of the body of Christ, as children of God, as joint heirs together with Jesus we are born of one baptism and filled with one Spirit.  We are the body and Christ is the head

However, since we are born of the flesh as descendants of the first Adam. Conceived, born, living in sin, and the members of a lost and degraded race, we must be redeemed and sanctified before we can enter the kingdom of God.  Remember we were chosen in Christ Jesus before the foundation of the world.  Once we have accepted Christ as our Savior and believe in our hearts that God has raised Him from the dead this inheritance is our possession   

However, we must possess our possessions for them to do us any good.  If we don’t accept the love of God in and through Christ Jesus, they are just so many gifts lying about unaccepted. 

The Life is in the blood.  And it is the shedding of His blood that is the first action in the unfolding of our redemption.  This is the Good News and it’s the best news ever.  Christ poured out His blood so that we might be freed from our burden of sin.  There is no longer an unbridgeable gulf between God and humanity.  The sin life, the sin nature that the first Adam assumed when he disobeyed God and then passed on to all his offspring has been washed away in the blood of Calvary.  

Lord, let us see with your eyes, hear with your ears, love with your heart, and touch with your hands.  As we strive to be about Your business send us somewhere to be a blessing to someone somehow. 

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 

Believe it Confess it Receive it Live it October 6, 2020

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Here’s one of those fifty cent words we Christians throw around, Omniscient. In other words, God is all knowing.  Since He’s the Alpha and the Omega the first and the last He knows the end from the beginning and everything in between.   

All of which brings forward a question that’s a mystery often presented as a conundrum some people pose as a veiled attack against the reality of God. 

They ask, “If God knows everything doesn’t that mean He knew Adam would fall even before He created him in the first place?  So why do we make a big deal about God making a way for salvation when He created man to fail?”  Some even compare this to the fireman who starts a fire then calls in the alarm so that he can become a hero for putting it out. 

The biblical answer for this is found in Paul’s rendition of the story of Pharaoh hardening his heart against God found in Romans chapter nine

For the Lord says of Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth.”  Therefore, He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills He hardens. 

You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who has resisted His will?” But indeed, O man, who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, “Why have you made me like this?” Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor? 

What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles? 

That’s it.  “Does not the potter have power over the clay?” Remember what we were originally “God formed man of the dust of the ground. Adam was nothing but a clay mannequin until God “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.” It was only after this that “man became a living being.” 

We are the clay.  He is the potter. And the fact that He made one “for honor and another for dishonor” is none of our concern.  It is the fact that He made a way for the dishonorable to become the honorable is what this is all about. 

The first work of God for our salvation was His decision that He would make a way for us to become not only reconciled to Him but actually become His children.  This is not based on anything we’ve done, will do, or could ever do.  It is not because of any good which is in us.  It is based solely on the love of God. 

This truth gives us perfect security and assurance in our transitory world of sin.  For the love of God never fails, never wavers, and is always everywhere dependable, reliable, and ever present.  What can the world do to us when we’re safe and secure in the love of God? 

Paul expressed this perfectly in his letter to the Romans, “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” 

Though all may be saved not all will be.  All of us were born in sin.  We carry embedded in our fallen bodies the burden of Adam’s original sin.  Then along the way we all contribute to that sin burden ourselves.  All these sins were paid for at the cross.  All of us can have Adam’s sin as well as every sin we have ever or will ever commit washed away by the blood of Christ’s sacrifice however, not all will avail themselves of this glorious gift. 

Look at it this way; if I purchase a brand-new car and I offer it to you.  If you accept the gift it is your car.  But if you refuse to accept it, it may have been purchased for you, it may be waiting right there in your driveway, but if you don’t accept the gift it isn’t yours. 

From the first moment that we confess Christ as our Lord and believe that God raised Him from the dead we’ve walked in the kingdom of God.  Our steps may still be visible in the natural world, but we’re walking in the Spirit.  Before that, satan held the title deed to our lives.  We were born into the line of the first Adam, sold in sin and separated from God.  But, once we’re born-again we stand in the line of Christ, the last Adam

God places us in His family, and He has work for us to do.  “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”  

And since He has work for us to do, He has prepared us for that work.  Every gift, every talent, every opportunity we have has been strategically placed in us and in our lives to help us fulfill the mission God has for us.  He doesn’t send us on to the battle without equipping us for the fight.  We aren’t some kind of busted up, raggedy sinner who just barely scraped in by the skin of our teeth.  No!  We’re the born-again children of God bought with the precious blood of Christ.  In Him we are the righteousness of God. 

We’re washed in the blood of the Lamb who takes away the sins of the world.  Believe it.  Confess it.  Receive it.  Live it.  We not only stand blameless before God our Father we stand redeemed and holy in the love of Christ, children of God received before the throne not as one who lived a wasted life of sin, but instead as one set right, accepted, and honored as a member of the Body of Christ, a living stone in the temple of God.   

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 

We Are Accepted September 28, 2020

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Everyone from the greatest sinner to the greatest saint needs the grace of God.  Everyone who wanders through the vail of tears that is this fallen world is tested, tried, and assaulted by our adversary, the prince of the power of the air, who goes about like a roaring lion seeking who he may devour.  Our fallen body and soul are open to him and his minions.  And if that isn’t bad enough our own sinful desires lure us into trap after trap.

Surrounded and attacked by all this it seems natural that we would cry out with Paul, “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”

There is an answer to this cry.  We don’t stand alone before the heavenly court of justice.  If we did not even one of us would deserve anything except eternal damnation and separation from God.  Instead of standing alone in the withering judgement fire “we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” and the fire of His presence becomes for us the life-giving warmth of His love.

We need to praise the glory of God’s grace, His unmerited favor because, “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  We may have been the worst of sinners.  We may have cursed God and persecuted His people but once we turn from the darkness to the light, once we embrace Him and are born again all that changes.  We change and the world around us changes.

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

The author of Hebrews goes into even greater detail showing how the eternal sacrifice of Christ is superior to the shadow sacrifices of the Old Covenant.

“Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 1And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.”

This is the description of our present state.  We are accepted.  We have entered our inheritance.  Today we “see in a mirror, dimly,” but once this perishable has been swallowed and replaced by imperishable, we shall see “face to face.”  For “Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.”

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

All That Really Matters September 14, 2020

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Back when I was an atheist and I believed this is all there is I was passionately interested in politics, economics, and current events.  I was committed to working for my side and to defeating the other guy.  Now that I’m a born-again child of God, a citizen of Heaven, and merely a pilgrim here I follow the ever-changing kaleidoscope of civic events more like a soap opera.   

Yes, I understand that within this bubble we know as the space-time continuum the ins and outs of who’s up and who’s down actually make a difference.  For example, it will have a profound impact on the United States whether we hand the government over to socialist revolutionaries or if we deliver it to capitalists.  However, in the grand scheme of things this makes about as much difference as which queen bee is laying eggs in which hive. 

I came to this level of a wokeness after years of Bible study, prayer, and fellowship with God.  Just as a caterpillar goes through a metamorphosis and become a butterfly, I believe humans go through much the same process.  Only instead of a two-stage process like a butterfly we go through three stages. 

First, we’re a fetus (in Latin fetus means little one) for approximately nine months.  Second, we’re born into this world and live here for as long as we do.  And finally, we pass from this world into eternity.  Let’s see: nine months, maybe 120 years, eternity.  Which stage do you think is the real deal?  The nine months prepare us for the 120 years and the 120 years prepare us for eternity.  Two of these stages are merely steppingstones for the main event.  Therefore, I contend that humans are in fact eternal beings who pass through two stages of development to become what we were created to be. 

All that really matters in this stage of our development is the direction we’re facing when we leave it.  Are we looking to God and putting our faith in Him?  Or are we looking to the world still grasping for all it has to offer?  Think of it this way: if when we’re a fetus inside our mother the umbilical cord is wrapped wrong or if there is a chromosomal problem we could enter life with some sort of handicap that we will spend the next 120 years dealing with.  In the same way if we enter eternity facing in the wrong direction, we will spend eternity dealing with the ramifications of that choice. 

From my personal Christian perspective here’s the 411 on how we turn from the world and face in the right direction. 

Everyone can see that this world is broken.  Evil runs rampant.  The bad are rewarded.  The good are crushed.  Sickness, poverty, and oppression are on display in every direction.  If God is good, why would He create such a horror show? 

The easy answer is He didn’t.  When He was done with creation He paused and looked around.  Surveying all that He had done and it was “Good.” 

Then man turned away from God, embraced Satan, and God cursed the world while at the same time promising that a Savior would come who would step on Satan’s head and deliver humanity from the grip of the evil we chose. 

The price was a sinless sacrifice, the good for the bad.  No human could do it because none of us has ever or could ever live a sinless life.  Therefore, God sent His only Son, Jesus, to be incarnated as a human, live a sinless life, and then offer himself up as a sacrifice for us all.  After His sacrifice Jesus descended into hell and as an eternal being suffered the punishment for every sin that had ever or would ever be committed.  Then He was born-again in the very heart of darkness, triumphed over Satan, and God raised Him from the dead.  Jesus led all those who had died waiting for this deliverance out of Satan’s grasp and emerged on the third day with the keys to death and hell. 

After spending forty days instructing His disciples on how to carry the message of the best news ever to the world He ascended into heaven.  Ten days later the Holy Spirit arrived and filled the new believers so that from then on they were no longer earth bound humans. They were instead wall-to-wall God birthed children of the Most High on a pilgrimage here with a mission to share their experience to be witnesses

There it is in a nutshell.  The word Gospel means “Good News” in old English.  So, when you get filled to overflowing with all the bad news the world vomits up every day why not turn to the good news.   

Don’t worry about what you can’t do anything about.  Do you think if you missed one news broadcast or if you stopped watching them for ever it would make any difference to what is happening on the stage of the world or would the actors just keep reading their lines and playing their parts?  The bad news impacts us more than we can ever impact it. 

It’s like a joke making the rounds: 

An English asks an Amish fellow, “Why isn’t the COVID rampaging through your communities?”  The Amish fellow says without hesitation, “Because we don’t have any TVs.” 

The TVs, radios, magazines, and papers may carry the news, but only the Bible has the Good News.  It all comes down to choices: “choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”  In other words no matter what, we’re all going to serve somebody.  It will either be any one of the countless gods of this world or the one true God. 

How do you make that choice?  Is it by joining the right church?  Is it by attending the correct services, worshipping in a certain way, or following any of the endless rules the world invents to complicate and build a barrier between us and the God who wants us to join His family?  No!  Not only has He made it simple He has made it easy.  All we need to do is confess Jesus as the Lord of our life and believe in our hearts that God has raised Him from the dead and we will be saved.  That’s it.  Do that and we have joined God’s family.  Then we can pour ourselves into His Word so that it’s life-giving Spirit will fill us and recreate us.   

Forget about the bad news and study the Good News instead. Let’s “Eliminate the negative, accentuate the positive, latch on to the affirmative, and don’t with mess mister in between.” 

Or to put it another way, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.” 

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 

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