Trusting Experience Over Scripture – a Common and Deadly Error

Galatians 1:6-8 ESV  I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—  (7)  not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.  (8)  But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.

Many people who claim to be Christians also claim to believe the Bible to be God’s Word and our authority for what we believe and do. And yet in my conversations with them, I find that few really do consult Scripture as their primary source of truth. Instead, they turn to the “bible” of their own experience.

Let me explain.

Continue reading “Trusting Experience Over Scripture – a Common and Deadly Error”

The Other Way to Peace

2 Thessalonians 1:6-10 ESV  since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you,  (7)  and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels  (8)  in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.  (9)  They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might,  (10)  when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed.

There is no peace when the wicked are present in our lives. Yes, we who know Christ experience peace with God, but when it comes to having peace in relationships with others, real peace is unattainable when it comes to dealing with evil people. All domestic abuse victims and survivors know this. Day by day, moment by moment, there is anything but peace. Even when those brief appearances of peace come, they are counterfeit. Set ups for the next attack.

Now, most professing Christians and churches tell us that we can have relational peace with anyone. But the burden for attaining it is on our back. WE must forgive. WE must effect reconciliation. WE must be humble. WE must…convert those people to Christ! And this is presented as the only path to peace with “difficult” people.

But there is another way, and the Bible is filled with its descriptions.

Continue reading “The Other Way to Peace”

Book Recommendation: Dare to Fly by Senator Martha McSally

One of our longtime blog followers (and my friend) sent me the following book recommendation. The author is now a U.S. Senator (Arizona) who is a retired Air Force officer, having served as a fighter pilot in many combat arenas. Martha McSally is also an abuse survivor and her life story will be a real encouragement to all.  You can find Dare to Fly on Amazon here*.
Here is the synopsis my friend sent me:
This week I received a copy of Senator Martha McSally’s new book, Dare To Fly: Simple Lessons in Never Giving Up. She was appointed to the US Senate from AZ, and is currently running for a full term. She is also a retired USAF Colonel., who led troops in Afghanistan! The first female fighter pilot to fly in combat and to command a fighter squadron in combat. I find her to be an inspiration. But even more, what she overcame!
So far I have only read chapter 10: “Thrive Through the Darkness”.
She tells of being sexually assaulted, abused and raped, first by her high school coach, and then in the USAF. She tells how the military structure, even in the Academy, allowed this to happen to women, and the measures she took to fight for reform, and how she personally “thrived” through this darkness. She is a believer. I will quote a paragraph here:
“It is important not to conflate forgiveness with reconciliation, because they are very different. Forgiveness is letting go of the offense and not letting it have any power over you anymore. Reconciliation is a restoration of the relationship. We are called to forgive, and we are freed when we forgive, but we are not necessarily called to reconcile with the other person.”
And more:
…”With the grace of God leading me, I was able to come to a true place of forgiveness, freed from the rage and sense of betrayal—feelings that were punishing me, not the man who assaulted me.”
My friend continues:
There is probably more inspiration to encourage women to fight through the challenges of life (and abuse) in this book. The military good ol’ boy structure reminds me of some churches.
*Unholy Charade is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for website owners to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking Amazon.com and affiliated sites.  See additional information here.