• the truth about,  Tough stuff

    Life and Liberty: NIFLA v. Becerra

    North Carolina (my home state) is one of 17 states that has some form of alcoholic beverage control commission. This commission operates a number of ABC stores which, in our parlance, is code for “where you go to get liquor.” This commission comes under the authority of the Department of Public Safety – a part of the state government. According to their website, NC ABC stores generate approximately $1 billion annually through the sale of controlled beverages. That’s a pretty penny, no? Imagine with me for a moment that the State of NC passed a law that required substance abuse rehab centers to post prominent advertisements for the nearest ABC…

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  • Biblical,  the truth about,  Tough stuff

    Christianity and Weed

    Two nights a week I teach Adult Basic Education at our local prison…I mean “correctional institution.” Naturally, many of the people who find their way into prison have had some experience with drugs, and sadly, many are hoping to have more experience with drugs after they leave. So, last night somehow the topic of marijuana (weed, smoke, bud, pot, Mary Jane, etc.) was brought up in our discussion of World War Two (Please don’t ask me how. They can turn the conversation to weed if you’re talking about Mother Teresa). Of course, these guys know that I am a pastor and a Christian so comments were made about how the…

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    The Truth about the Church

    Photo courtesy of kingcarp Adapted from a sermon given 7/28/2013Recently the Lord has been emphasizing some things in my heart about the church. A few weeks ago this thought struck me; If “church” is a place we go, then it is also a place we can leave.Let me restate that for clarity and emphasis. If “church” is a place we can visit, or a location we can go then it is also a place we can leave after a prescribed amount of time. This has some very serious implications, one of which we will look at a little later. The other thing that the Lord struck me with recently was…

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  • the truth about,  Thoughts/Reflections,  Tough stuff

    The Truth About Racism

    Right off the bat I want to admit that I did not live through the times of great racial tension in the 1950’s and 60’s. However, it appears to me that the times we are living in now are some of the most racially charged of my lifetime (1981-present). For that reason I want to approach this topic carefully, yet honestly. Even some of the highest officials in our government claim that we need to have an open and honest discussion about race in our land. Well, here is my open honesty. Please take it with the love and care in which it is intended. From my point of view,…

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    The Truth about Love

    Photo courtesy of kaniths It should be no surprise to any of us that love is, perhaps, the most oft quoted attribute of God. This is for good reason. 1 John 4:8 tells us as much, “for God is love.” Indeed, one cannot conceive of any other attribute of God without first considering His unending, unconditional love for His creation. God loved enough to create us. He loved enough to give us free will and when we used that free will to disobey Him, He sent His Son, whom He loved, to die in our stead. The Gospels and the message of Jesus are replete with the command to love,…