Sunday, March 31, 2013
Saturday, February 23, 2013
Unfortunately many celebrity Christians forget that to be a public follower of Jesus Christ you will be scorned and persecuted. In fact even if you are not a celebrity you will be. However many fail to heed the message of Christ 2000 years ago about those that wanted to follow Him. He stated: " take up your cross...and consider the cost"(Luke 14:28) . Here is an example of a popular young man, in the celebrity limelight, who, once the heat of controversy warmed him, gets out of the kitchen. Sad to say, the historical landscape of classical Christianity is filled with those who dropped the cross under the weight of persecution. Let's hope Mr. Tebow picks up the cross again and continues on in the good fight of the faith.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 4:39 PM
Thursday, November 1, 2012
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 11:27 AM
Friday, April 13, 2012
Most of the public- so called "education" is basically propaganda for secular humanism. Yet rather than retreating, Christians need to be steeped enough in the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ to combat much of the nonsense that is being passed off as education in our public schools. However this must be done by getting Christians to first be educated about who they are as followers of Jesus Christ and what we believe. The world we live in is indeed pagan and confused but so was the Greek world that the early church encountered as it set out to expand the church. The kingdom of darkness is always opposing the "children of light" but that can't be an excuse for believers to not "put on the whole armor of God" so that they can be able to catapult the "gospel of peace" to men and women who are at "enmity against God". We must be equipped to intelligently articulate the message of the Jesus Christ's good news and all it entails, as well as defending the faith by being "...ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:(1 Peter 3:15) Remember "greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world"
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 6:31 AM
Monday, April 2, 2012
In our country a form of Christianity is practiced where people are unwilling to recognize the cost to follow Christ. However in the world abroad, believers engage in a hostile atmosphere where society is in direct opposition to the advancement of the Kingdom of God. I believe eventually in order to practice true authentic Christianity where it is proclaimed without relativism and pluralism mixed in- persecution will and must come to America. If we are to boldly claim the only truth of Christ himself: " I am the way the truth and the life no man comes unto the Father except by Me"- we must expect hostility. Because the truth of scripture and the lie of the world will not mix and resistance will emerge. This polar opposite will rise on both sides and followers of Jesus will have to stand on one side or the other- because you can't be in the middle. You will have to be for or against, in or out, believe or not believe, hot or cold. Jesus says: "because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth".(Rev. 3:16) Therefore standing for Christ will be a must in the future.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 9:34 AM
Monday, March 12, 2012
American consumerism and pragmatism has invaded the church as never before and more and more men are looking at the world's model of success in ministry rather than God's. This clip points out a very important fact about God: numbers are irrelevant but faithfulness is vital. God does not measure success according to the number of people you can pile in a building, He is concerned if one is faithful to the true and uncompromising proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ as well as living it out authentically with integrity. This involves a life of discipleship that is not limited to the pulpit on Sunday, but is to be carried out on the street where you live Monday through Saturday.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 4:44 AM
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Joel Osteen dangerous? Yes he is! Don't let that smiling face fool you. He is indeed a danger sign of "DO NOT ENTER" on the evangelical highway. This is because Americans unfortunately enter into his ministry via media, and his church service is watched on television by more people than any other Televangelist's worship service. Because of this, his ability to spread dangerous false teaching is magnified! In this clip, Osteen is saying something about pork being unhealthy or toxic, and that he eats only turkey or cows- but what is toxic is his misunderstanding of the gospel. Giving people dietary advise in church may be interesting, but it's not the job of the preacher. His job is to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ which is the power to save human souls from the wrath of God. This is to be our message to the world, not helpful hints that can make you physically feel better. Getting people healthy is okay I guess, but lowering people's cholesterol won't save them from hell.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 12:28 PM
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Thursday, August 18, 2011
I'm sure, the mayor of Philadelphia, Michael Nutter means well by giving good information, a nice speech, and helpful advice to the "rebels without a cause"-but this message is not for the church on Sunday morning. The worship service is for the preaching of the gospel, the administration of the sacraments and offering praise and worship to Christ -not parenting tidbits for bad kids in the neighborhood. We already have enough modern-day church preachers giving life advise instead of the gospel of Christ; so the last thing we need is a politician on Sunday mornings doing the same thing. Worship service is for the weekly gathering of the saints exalting Christ and sharing His word, not for public officials spewing out scoldings to a culture that is depraved and infested with un-ruly children. Instead of using the church, this lecture should be done on the steps in front of city hall and not in the pulpit in front of the communion table.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 5:54 PM
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Pornography is a cancer that is moving through the church at alarming rates and the church is just beginning to address the issue but it has been with us for some time. 29% of born again adults in the U.S. feel it is morally acceptable to view movies with explicit sexual behavior (The Barna Group). 57% of pastors say that addiction to pornography is the most sexually damaging issue to their congregation (Christians and Sex Leadership Journal Survey, March 2005). The lure of pornography however is more than just an addiction that is doing harm to Christians- instead it should be seen as something much more dangerous, it should be seen as sin. Churches are building ministries to deal with people addicted to porn. They are also trying to develop therapeutic programs for members struggling with this addiction. Then how do churches deal with pornography effectively? I believe that the church must first address this as an issue of sin and not just a concept of addictions or bad behavior. I realize that viewing pornography becomes addicting and damaging to the lives of those trapped into the behavior of viewing it ( and I too have seen videos as well as the internet...I haven't always been a pastor.) And although I don't watch porn and I'm not addicted to it ( by the grace of God), I think that there is a better way of approaching the issue. By dealing with root of the problem and by first addressing it's core which is the sin problem, we can get a clearer grasp of the struggle. The great puritan writer and theologian John Owens, a few hundred years ago, wrote a fascinating book that I have read from time to time called "The Mortification of Sin". It is a book that all Christians should read again and again. In this book Owens addresses the struggle of sin in human beings systematically. He does this like a scientist in a laboratory using as his tool of choice: scripture. For Owen, while the body is important, it is but the instrument for the real problem which lie in man's internal nature. Using classic faculty-psychology categories of the mind, the will, and the affections, Owen consistently attempts to present a holistic perspective of the human person, and this informs his view of sin and sanctification in the believer. When churches and ministries aim at healing the symptom of watching pornography, they miss the real issue which lies at the root of the symptom: sin. When sin is dealt with, which is at the heart of the problem, the fruit of watching pornography is killed. Therefore if a tree is known by its fruit let's kill the root of the tree, sin. This works a lot better than picking off the fruit of the tree which is watching pornography.
Posted by Pastor Paul Starks at 1:08 PM