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We have a severe Ideological divide in the Country;  shouting, arguing, name calling won’t move us forward. Perhaps Persuasion with facts and details may move the minds and attitudes of people. Study, read, be prepared to give sound reasons to your positions. The World Needs a Strong America.

more to come……

 

It is very sad that Some, Media, Politicians and Pastors CONTINUE TO make a critical mistake in assuming that God and Allah are the Same, Actually they are not!

To gain a proper understanding of this question, ask it like this, “Do Christians and Muslims both have a correct understanding of who God is?” The answer is definitely no.

Because of crucial differences between the Christian and Muslim concepts of God, the two faiths and view of God cannot both be true. The biblical God alone addresses and solves the problem of sin by giving His Son.

Please don’t be deceived. It does Matter what you believe and Teach about this issue.

While the Muslim and Christian views of God have some similarities.  They Most Certainly do not Worship the same God.  Because of crucial differences between the Christian and Muslim concepts of God, the two faiths cannot both be true.

In addition, to how Jesus, God in the Flesh, answers Man’s Sin Problem,  A vital difference between the Islamic and Christian views of God is the biblical concept of the Trinity. (This doctrine also is what distinguishes Christianity from all other World Religions and Cultic groups likes Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses, New Ageism and etc).

In the Bible, God has revealed Himself as one God in three Persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

While each Person of the Trinity is fully God, God is not three gods but three in one. The Trinity is essential to the Christian faith. Without the Trinity, there would be no incarnation of God’s Son in the Person of Jesus Christ.

Without Jesus Christ, there would be no salvation from sin. Without salvation, sin would condemn all to an eternal hell.

Another very Critical component of this the Question, “Is God and allah the same” is seen when one considers the Mission of God. God’s Mission is stated as follows………. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son” (John 3:16-18)

The god of Islam did not have such a mission.

Dr. Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D.  Professor at Denver Theological Seminary, writes, “Islam claims to be a fulfillment of Christianity, yet it denies many essential Christian teachings.”

A Christian can never retreat from the clear doctrinal position that Jesus is GOD, yet Muhammad the prophet of allah, rejected the idea that Jesus, a human being, could in any sense be God.”

When one thinks critically and logically it becomes clear, the god of Islam and the God of Christianity cannot be same, because God can not possess contradictory attributes.

The New Testament writer, Jude says it plainly, “3 Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people. 4 For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about[b] long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.

 

Dr. Tom Smiley is a pastor, author, speaker, blogger, husband, grand dad, and Christ-follower.  He is a regional radio talk show host with WDUN Jacobs Media.  He is the founder of Life with Smiles Ministry.  His Sunday messages are broadcast on WDUN 550, and his “blog” entries and thoughts on God, Christian faith, current events, politics and Islam are available at https://tomsmiley.wordpress.com/

His books: Runaway Lives: Overcoming Emotional Undercurrents, Angels all Around, and Uncommon Common Sense can be ordered at his Life with Smiles website (www.lifewithsmiles.com).  Dr. Smiley is available for speaking engagements and discussion forums and can be contacted attsmiley@lakewoodlife.org or by calling 770.532.6307.

 

I don’t apologize for my Principled stance that First World nations have a right to preserve our own unique identity, character and values.

President Obama said in refereeing to the recent Paris Attacks that the event “was an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”

Many people consider these words to be “safe phrases” or expected political speak.

However, the selection of his words reveals a deep misunderstanding. (One I am afraid many Christians mistakenly hold)

At issue is that these words reveal that our President doesn’t understand that Islam, Radical or Moderate, DOES NOT SHARE THE VALUES that the Western World, our world, holds dear.

Need convincing…….Consider a soccer game between Turkey and Greece in Istanbul.  During this game the Turks booed during the moment of silence for the Paris dead and chanted “Allahu Akbar.” Where in the Western World have people booed a moment of silence for those suffering or dead?

Need convincing…..Among 1.6 billion Muslims, hundreds of millions do not share the values regarding women’s rights, abortion, homosexuality, free speech, or the equality of all religious faiths.

The default position usually taken by those who disagree with me on this matter is, “Oh, those are just the Fanatics of ISIS”.

REALLY?

Ask yourself this question, does Saudi Arabia share Obama’s universal values regarding sexual freedom and the equality of Christianity, Judaism and Islam?

Can you point to ONE Muslim Country that allows for anything like the First Amendment? How does the Sunni or Shiite sect of Islam look upon the Freedom of Speech, Religion, and a Free Press?

The values of secular France and the values of Americans are not shared by the Islamic world, Moderate or Radical. Their False Prophet, False Book and False god won’t permit it.

I’m open to a rebuttal from a person of the Islamic Faith, who would tell me different and say it in any Middle Eastern Country except Israel.

Mr. President you are Right, Partly….. The Paris Attack was an attack on all of humanity….….BUT NO those values ARE NOT SHARED by the Muslim World.

I don’t see the “REFUGEE” debate as an argument about whether Americans will be open and welcoming Rather, I frame this discussion from the vantage point that the world is reawakening long suppressed truths.

Truths such as race and religion matter. To some they are life-and-death matters.

The point missed is that not all creeds, cultures and tribes are equally or easily assimilated into a Western nation.

I don’t apologize for my Principled stance that First World nations have a right to preserve our own unique identity, character and values.

I believe the time may be at hand for a moratorium on all immigration and a rewriting of the immigration laws that reflect the understanding that our own unique identity, character and values have a right to be preserved as we welcome new people groups into America. At one time the immigration laws of America did that exactly.

Dr. Tom Smiley is a pastor, author, speaker, blogger, husband, grand dad, and Christ-follower.  He is a regional radio talk show host with WDUN Jacobs Media.  He is the founder of Life with Smiles Ministry and Church Well Solutions, a ministry consulting work.  His Sunday messages are broadcast on WDUN 550, and his “blog” entries and thoughts on God, Christian faith, current events, politics and Islam are available at https://tomsmiley.wordpress.com/

His books: Runaway Lives: Overcoming Emotional Undercurrents, Angels all Around, and Uncommon Common Sense can be ordered at his Life with Smiles website (www.lifewithsmiles.com).  Dr. Smiley is available for speaking engagements and discussion forums and can be contacted at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org or by calling 770.532.6307 or email at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org

Asking God to sanctify sin by blessing what he condemns is irresponsible, irreverent, and blasphemous. It is completely unacceptable as church policy. I will not do it.

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In 2002, the synod of the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster authorized its bishop to produce a service for blessing same-sex unions, to be used in any parish of the diocese that requests it.

A number of synod members walked out to protest the decision. J. I. Packer was one of those who walked out.

When asked why he walked out, he answered, “Because this decision, taken in its context, falsifies the gospel of Christ, abandons the authority of Scripture, jeopardizes the salvation of fellow human beings, and betrays the church in its God-appointed role as the bastion and bulwark of divine truth.”

Nearly 14 years ago, this biblical scholar demonstrated a respect and confidence in the functional, life-directing authority of Scripture rather than in the subjective opinions of man.

I have attempted to describe my heart and spirit as I enter this “public” debate relative to God’s Word.  I have often pointed to men like Paul, Peter, John, and Jude who were unashamed of standing on the Truth of God’s Word and pointed out error.

I found Jude’s word in his New Testament letter (verses 3-4),  to be the summation of my convictions and the reason for my standing for God’s Word.

I have decided, regardless of what personal preferences other pastors may hold and irrespective of the cultural trends in play, I will affirm the Bible as the ethical standard by which to judge my life and my responsibility.

Regardless of the opinions of the pseudo-intellects of our day, many who stand in pulpits that once stood upon Biblical Truth, there are only two ways to exegete Paul’s thought in 1 Corinthians 6:9–11 and other similar biblical passages.

One is to embrace an artificial interpretation of the text in which Paul is conceived as speaking of something other than same-sex union.

The second approach, as J.I. Packer notes, “is to let experience judge the Bible.”

……..Experience suggests that homosexual behavior is fulfilling to some; therefore, the Bible’s prohibition of it is wrong. But the appropriate response is that “the Bible is meant to judge our experience rather than the other way around,” and “feelings of sexual arousal and attraction, generating a sense of huge significance and need for release in action as    they do, cannot be trusted as either a path to wise living or a guide to biblical interpretation.”

J.I. Packer helps even the most timid among us understand “WHAT IS REALLY at stake” in today’s discussion; it is the nature of the Bible itself. Packer writes,

……Either the historic Christian belief that through the prophets, the incarnate Son, the apostles, and the writers of canonical Scripture as a body, God has used human language to tell us definitively and trans-culturally about his ways, his works, his will, and his worship. Furthermore, this revealed truth is grasped by letting the Bible interpret itself to us from within, in the knowledge that the way into God’s mind is through that of the writers. Through them, the Holy Spirit who inspired them teaches the church. Finally, one mark of sound biblical insights is that they do not run counter to anything else in the canon. . .[scripture]. . .

The second view applies to Christianity

. . .the Enlightenment’s trust in human reason, along with the fashionable evolutionary assumption that the present is wiser than the past. It concludes that the world has the wisdom, and the church must play intellectual catch-up in each generation in order to survive. From this standpoint, everything in the Bible becomes relative to the church’s evolving insights, which themselves are relative to society’s continuing development (nothing stands still), and the Holy Spirit’s teaching ministry is to help the faithful see where Bible doctrine shows the cultural limitations of the ancient world and needs adjustment in light of latter-day experience (encounters, interactions, perplexities, states of mind and emotion, and so on). Same-sex unions are one example. This view is scarcely 50 years old, though its antecedents go back much further.

Please understand there is more than an intellectual battle going on today or a fight among the preachers……..to bless homosexual behavior is an explicit deviation from the biblical gospel and the historic Christian creed.

The doctrines of creation, sin, regeneration, and sanctification are necessarily distorted in the effort to justify same-sex intimacy. Not to mention that the Apostle Paul writes that the eternal welfare of the individual is at stake.

We must not allow the forces of political correctness or a desire to be “liked” to trump the compelling factor that the love of Christ causes us to tell the truth.

Martin Luther, the Reformer, said in 1521:

Unless you prove to me by Scripture and plain reason that I am wrong, I cannot and will not recant. My conscience is captive to the Word of God. To go against conscience is neither right nor safe [it endangers the soul]. Here I stand. There is nothing else I can do. God help me. Amen.

To be clear, I summarize…

My prayer and effort will be to “be Christ Like” In discussion and dialogue. I will seek HIS strength to “speak the Truth in Love”. I will be fair and clear in my words and expressions.

However, I am reminded that Jesus Loved Perfectly as he taught, lived and engaged His Culture; and they still Killed Him.

Second, this is NOT PERSONAL. Nearly every family has as a friend, uncle, aunt, son, daughter, colleague who is “caught up in some sin”. I want to speak Truth so our friends and family will come to the Truth and be assured of Eternal Life with the Father.

Finally, the belief that what God has revealed in the written Word is binding on the consciences of all Christians and gives shape to their behavior on every issue, not merely same-sex marriage, will be my approach to living the Christian life and the guide for exercising the calling God has placed on my life.

Dr. Tom Smiley is a pastor, author, speaker, blogger, husband, grand dad, and Christ-follower.  He is a regional radio talk show host with WDUN Jacobs Media.  He is the founder of Life with Smiles Ministry and Church Well Solutions, a ministry consulting work.  His Sunday messages are broadcast on WDUN 550, and his “blog” entries and thoughts on God, Christian faith, current events, politics and Islam are available at https://tomsmiley.wordpress.com/

His books: Runaway Lives: Overcoming Emotional Undercurrents, Angels all Around, and Uncommon Common Sense can be ordered at his Life with Smiles website (www.lifewithsmiles.com).  Dr. Smiley is available for speaking engagements and discussion forums and can be contacted at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org or by calling 770.532.6307 or email at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org

I found content and and facts from from Packer on the Christian Life: Knowing God in Christ, Walking by the Spirit by Sam Storms, which is part of the Theologians on the Christian Life series, To be very helpful in writing this BLOG. I recommend your review.

Here is a 2 minute video I shared with Lakewood this past Sunday in light of the June 26, Supreme Court Ruling regarding Same Sex Marriage.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/tfov3mkxubmzgwc/Dr.%20Tom%20Smiley%20-%20Supreme%20Court%20ruling.flv?dl=0

Here is the FULL Written Content of the video Message:

The events of this past week have saddened me as they have many of you.  However, since I’ve had a few days to pray and reflect on the many contemporary issues Biblical Christians face, I have found great peace in the following.

First, we are called by God to speak the Truth in love. I’m saddened when pastors and teachers lack courage, seek political correctness over God correctness or just adore the applause of men more than God.

Bottom line for those of us who hold to a Biblical world view is that we can only be responsible for proclaiming the truth.

Jesus said, “I am the truth”….and HE IS…. Jesus said, “The truth shall set you free”….And only HE CAN.

My passion for telling people the Truth comes from my love for people.  I love people.  My heart is burdened because living outside of God’s Will will NOT bring wholeness in this world or eternal life in the next world.

Let’s love people enough to tell them the Truth.

Second, I have been impressed to remember that we must not be surprised or intimated when a culture turns away from God. Peter told his congregation, when persecution or criticism comes don’t think it strange.  Just keep doing what God has called us to do.

I am sure the Church in America will begin to experience the persecution, bias and prejudice that most Christians around the world live with EVERY DAY.  Let’s be faithful as they have been faithful.

Finally, we must affirm God’s Word. I realize there are many standing in pulpits who fail to teach God’s Word as sufficient.

N. T. Wright, Anglican Bishop of Durham, noted scholar and theologian, has indicated that it is not intellectually honest to remove the biblical admonition to refrain from same sex activity or promote marriage as something other than between a male and female.

In his remarks on the subject of marriage he said, “It’s like a government voting that black should be white. Sorry, you can vote that if you like, you can pass it by a total majority, but it isn’t actually going to change the reality”.

The pseudo-scholars and false teachers in pulpits today will stand before God to give an account of how they taught and lead God’s people.

My father reminded me of this awesome responsibility when, upon hearing of God’s call upon my life to pastor a church, he said, “Son, that is serious business.”

I will never back up on Jesus and I will never place “feelings,” pop-psychology or political correction over the Truth of God’s word.

I believe that Dr. William Lane Craig hit the mark with his comments, “This (same sex marriage ruling) is not slippery slope reasoning. It’s more like falling off a cliff. By deconstructing marriage so that it is purely conventional, dependent upon the opinion of five justices, the Court makes marriage become whatever they want.”

I am going to pray and ask God to keep me from becoming “weary in well doing as I live as a Christ Follower.”

I will proclaim the Truth that Doctrine Matters, and to any enslaved or shamed by any sin, I will continue to proclaim, “You are Wrong BUT you are loved.”

I want to be a vehicle God uses to proclaim that Jesus loves you and invites YOU to join HIM in HIS redemptive, redeeming work.  Jesus wants all to Trust Him in matters of Living and Dying.

I shall not back up on Jesus or fall to political correction in order to please the government, Supreme Court Justices, pseudo-intellects or pastors who love the applause of men more than God.

I shall hold to and teach God’s Sufficient Word Provided and Protected by God through the ages. Ours is a serious business!

Join Me?

 

 

Dr. Tom Smiley is a pastor, author, speaker, blogger, husband, grand dad, and Christ-follower.  He is a regional radio talk show host with WDUN Jacobs Media.  He is the founder of Life with Smiles Ministry and Church Well Solutions, a ministry consulting work.  His Sunday messages are broadcast on WDUN 550, and his “blog” entries and thoughts on God, Christian faith, current events, politics and Islam are available at https://tomsmiley.wordpress.com/

His books: Runaway Lives: Overcoming Emotional Undercurrents, Angels all Around, and Uncommon Common Sense can be ordered at his Life with Smiles website (www.lifewithsmiles.com).  Dr. Smiley is available for speaking engagements and discussion forums and can be contacted at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org or by calling 770.532.6307 or email at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org

 

            *By now you may have heard that John Boehner beat back a                             challenge to his  speakership from 24 restless conservative House                     Members.  Two dozen Republicans  voted against the speaker, most                 in  the  modern history of the House. 

           This RESULT was NOT in when I penned these remarks.  I was at the             time unaware of  how any of  the Georgia deletion or my own 9th                     District Representative voted on the  Speaker issue.

 Here are My Thoughts……..I welcome your Feedback.

FIrst, Full Disclosure

Full Disclosure requires that I admit that previous to the last few years, I would have given little thought or interest to a “Speaker” Vote. However, my involvement in Co-Hosting an Issues based Radio Talk Show via Jacobs Media has required I pay more attention and give analysis of current events.  (It has been Personally enriching to participate in political commentary and discussion)

In addition, I have a close and personal friendship with a Representative, Doug Collins, my 9th District Representative, who WILL cast a vote that won’t please everyone.

So I decided to make some calls to a few trusted advisers, do some personal research, ask a lot of questions and try to “wrap” my mind around this issue. Here are my thoughts.  Your feedback is welcomed.

Personal Positions:

I am an unashamed Political Conservative, who holds principled values on such issues as:

Tax Reform, the Definition of Marriage, Smaller Government, a Strong National defense, the sanity of Life, greater State’s Rights, Gun ownership Rights and  other recognizable Conservative values,

As Far as Speaker Boehner Goes:

I would find it difficult to ever vote for a person who didn’t hold such Principled similar views as myself.

Speaker John Boehner certainty would NOT get my support as “MY” Congressional Representative.

His partnership with President Obama in crafting the CR/omnibus, $1.1 trillion spending bill that funded the government for 10 months AND Speaker Boehner’s  appeared efforts at blocking our newest elected Republicans from advancing conservative policy is ENOUGH for me to NOT support him.

Not to mention my impression that Speaker Boehner gave away the best tool available to rein in our liberal activist president: the power of the purse.

Let’s Talk about Who represents me

HOWEVER, Speaker Boehner IS NOT my Representative.  He is Speaker of the House and that is a different job entirely.

I want my Representative to STAND on principled conservative values, to VOTE conservative values AND to be INVOLVED in setting conservative legislative agenda.

The question is Can my Representative be EFFECTIVE; sitting AWAY from the Table while his/her party is in control of the House?

We know how the “game” is played.  We know that those IN leadership work hard to stay IN Leadership and will use every “tool” to stay IN Leadership even if it means penalizing others in the same party.

Believe me I realize how this sounds, but is it sensible? My Representative can still cast the kinds of VOTES on legislation that I support even if Speaker Boehner is reelected.

I will hold my Representative responsible for votes on legislation, not procedural votes or leadership votes. (However, Procedural votes to my liking on leadership would be “Gravy”)

I believe the sensible, effective route as I consider my PERSONAL vote every two years is to hold a representative responsible for an entire body of work. (Votes cast)

Looking from the Outside IN, I believe, I would Probably NOT support the current Speaker however; I am presently not at the table. I don’t understand how the game is played. (And if you don’t believe there is gamesmanship in the process you are not well informed.)

With all this Said:

If I were a Congressional Representative the “BIG” issue relative to Speaker Boehner revolves around the Constitution.  Is the Constitution under assault?

Given I believe our Constitution is under assault by a liberal activist president and House Republicans are the last line of defense I would vote for New House Leadership.

However, I understand MY Fear of a Constitutional Crisis may be unfounded and thus a vote for NEW House leadership isn’t necessary.  I suppose time will tell. It is serious a gamble.

So, there you go, my thoughts…….I’ll be interested in your feedback and to “see” how my reflections on this subject are received from a political Conservative community which I am a part.  Peace.

It is shameful that a Politician has more courage than many who stand behind Christ’s  Pulpit and don’t have the courage to stand for Truth.  They are so eager to compromise the truth of Christianity that they refuse to pray in Jesus’ Name and reject the sufficiency of God’s Word in order to be accepted by people who laugh at their weakness of conviction and faith

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A few days ago, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley made an accurate remark for which he will be throughly criticized.  In his January 11, 2011 address he said, ” those who have not accepted Jesus as their savior are not my brothers and sisters…” 

Well, it didn’t take long for the criticism to develop from the “walking dead and blind”.  I’m sure he will be called Uniformed, unenlightened and intolerant and this coming from folks calling themselves Christians!

The immediate comments from The Anti-Defamation League and The Birmingham Islamic Society were utter foolishness and reflective of today’s double standard against Christians.   

P. L. E. A. S. E !  Of course these two men understand the nature and context of Governor Bentley’s remarks! After all do Jews and Muslims consider Christians to be their “brothers and sisters”?   Islam teaches that Non Muslims are Infidels.

Make no mistake.  This is all about political Correctness.  I am thankful to see one politician who is more concerned about Principle and less concerned with political Correctness.

OF COURSE non-Christian can expect to receive equal treatment during Governor Bentley’s term. 

OF COURSE Governor Bentley can be effective for all who call Alabama home. (I would say, More than most given, his Christian Values.)

Governor Robert Bentley is correct from a Christian perspective “any person who has not received Jesus Christ, (God in the Flesh), as personal Savior is Not a Child of God.  Non Christians are  Creations of God, valued by HIM, demonstrated by HIS sacrificial and atoning death on the Cross.

I wish politicians and religious leaders would get it right.  It is incorrect to say “We are all God’s children”.  Actually we are not.  We are all God’s “creation”.  The Bible is very clear about who the Children of God are:

“Yet to all who received him {Jesus}, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12

People who have Not accepted Jesus as personal savior are not my brothers and sisters; to be a spiritual member of God’s redeemed family (the Body of Christ) requires faith in Jesus Christ, as Lord.

A Non Christian might own the store where I shop, be my neighbor or my golfing friend.  Moreover, they have value because they are made in God’s image and because Jesus died for them; However they are not my brother or sister — a term which Scripture reserves for fellow believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.   

Here is what is Shameful

It is shameful that a Politician has more courage than many who stand behind Christ’s  Pulpit and don’t have the courage to stand for Truth.  They are so eager to compromise the truth of Christianity that they refuse to pray in Jesus’ Name and reject the sufficiency of God’s Word in order to be accepted by people who laugh at their weakness of conviction and faith.

Governor Robert Bentley is correct and I commend him for standing on his principled beliefs and core values.  How about you?

 

Dr. Tom Smiley, is Senior of Pastor of Lakewood Baptist Church, Gainesville, Georgia.  The 2400 member congregation is a vibrant Christian fellowship locally and globally.  Dr. Smiley’s is the founder of “Life with Smiles Ministry”. His messages are broadcast on WDUN 550 and his”Blog” entries and thoughts on God, Faith, Current Events, and Islam are available at https://tomsmiley.wordpress.com/   His Books, “Runaway Lives: overcoming emotional undercurrents”, “Angels all Around”, and “Uncommon Common Sense” can be ordered at his Life with Smiles website. Contact Dr. Smiley at tsmiley@lakewoodlife.org