Can’t Live With Jesus Part-Time Expecting Full Benefits

black silhouette icon of donald trumps face


If Jesus lives in you, then He does so full-time, and grants you the full benefits of being His co-heir. There’s no part-time with Jesus (this is what the Bible describes as lukewarm faith). A person is either with Him or against Him. If the person is lukewarm (part-time) then Jesus spews out the person. At least this is what the Scriptures teach.


Reviewing the Past

When going through some old social media stuff, up popped a number of memories. Lots of photos, loads of well-wishes, even plenty of encouraging words, like these:

“He is risen indeed! The gospel is the good news that Jesus defeated sin, death, and evil by His own death and resurrection. And He’s making all things new, even us. May God continue to bless you today and for eternity.”

“May the blessings from the Lord above be yours in the coming year! The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of His bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You’ll lend to many nations but will borrow from none. The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you’ll always be at the top, never at the bottom.”

The above two comments are clearly from Christians. So, too, was this link to a story about Donald Trump, with my friend commenting, “Do you think this is what the Bible means when it says ‘and a little child shall lead them?’” My first thought was to remark that President Trump is not “little”. But more seriously, this link and sassy comment from my friend appears to have been a line of demarcation. The number of very negative social media posts – by professing Christians – skyrocketed after this one. The world’s reaction to “The Donald” was a game changer, for better or for worse. (It was for the worse).

Putting a silly face on all of this (for now), I’ll add this:

I’d like the “Smoking Gun” special, please.  Wait, that comes with the “Nothing Burger” and a side of “No There There”, right?  Is there a kiddie version that comes with a toy “dog whistle”?  Oh, with regard to the media and societal meltdown over the Trump presidency – according to an article in the “Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences” the meltdown is being caused by human emissions of CO2.


Speaking of Controversies

I’m reminded of this story about the controversy attached to the sitting Vice-President of the United States speaking at my daughter’s commencement ceremony.  The link contains an interesting commentary, and I applaud anyone who takes a public stand for what they believe. Sadly, however, the essay too frequently resorts to remarks that are ad hominem and unsubstantiated.

For example:

“Alumni and students flooded administrators’ inboxes with emails protesting the decision.”  How do we know this is true, and how many constitutes a “flood”?

“Faculty members have called for boycotts.”  Which ones?  How many?

“Many who oppose the decision say that hosting Mr. Pence will serve as an endorsement of the current president.”  Again, how many constitutes “many”?  Are there also “many” who argue the opposite view?

“Students study the politics of Ronald Reagan and the literature of C. S. Lewis as well as the Bible.”  Is there something wrong with this?  Is this all they study?

“Most of us were raised in Protestant evangelical households, and more than 16 percent of the 2,500 students were home-schooled.”  Is there something wrong with this?  Approximately 400 of the students were home schooled before entering college.  So what?  Why is this important?

“Some students have had little exposure to popular culture or liberal politics.”  How has this been ascertained?  Is there supporting research for this assertion?

“A few seem to see their conservative political affiliation as a ticket to eternal salvation.”  Are there examples that could be cited to support this claim?  If it’s truly only “a few”, is this significant enough to include in the article?

“In Donald Trump, however, evangelicals were confronted with a candidate who pledged allegiance to conservative ideals, but embodied none of them.”  None?  Really?  Not even one?

“By being politically accommodating to the administration of a faithless man who enacts damaging policies…”  The President claims to be a Christian.  Observers might have their doubts, but only God knows the heart.  So, we should be careful about calling someone faithless, especially without knowing them personally.  Also, which “damaging policies” are specifically in view?

“Students expressed their concerns in editorials for the school newspaper and in meetings with administrators.”  Did others possibly share their support for the decision?

“Students are debating the merits of tying faith to politics — a subject that’s always been taken for granted.”  Taken for granted by whom?  It’s totally okay to share concerns and to protest.  However, we do well when we root our arguments in provable statements, and seek to avoid painting others as caricatures.


What’s One to Make of These Oldie-But-Goodie Stories?

A favorite quote from the testimony, “As I said to Mr. Gowdy, I don’t do evidence”.  How can he make a claim without it?  And, with some snark intended, does he have any evidence that he doesn’t do evidence?

One must be discerning when traversing the datasphere.  You’re just minding your own business when, whammo, someone posts a link to an article about reincarnation.  It’s online, so it must be true.  Well, actually, if it’s on one of the major platforms, odds are it’s not true at all.  Anyway, here’s a question that’s better to ponder than the ones presented in the reincarnation article:  What are the signs that you have a current life?

Are you someone who thinks the “social justice” issue is brand new, as in never was a problem before 2020?  Here’s a link from five years ago highlighting the fact that we should’ve begun the advocacy for truth much sooner than last year (or the year before).  Despite the cries of parents defending their kids’ right to bear math, it might be time, with the rise in math violence, to admit that we need more math control.

A brother in Christ reported a news item:  “Explosion in Manchester is now being treated as a terrorist act. There’s a special place in hell for people who do this to innocent people… and the hem of His garment will be red with the blood of those who turned against or didn’t know Him.”   In many ways it’s a very sad world we’re living in.  But as for the “special place in hell” comment… Not if they repent and trust in Jesus to take their sin upon Himself.

A wrap up thought for this section of the blog:  “Don’t we watch people do all sorts of things to avoid submitting?  Children lose privileges rather than spend ten minutes doing their homework.  Addicts keep drinking or playing the slots rather than walk away, returning to a family, maybe even a loving family ready to rejoice with them.  Jonah jumps to his death rather than simply turn around.  Reading his story, one might begin to think, ‘This can’t be true, just turn around. All you have to do, Jonah, is turn around.’   Yeah, all Jonah, all I, all you, all we need to do is turn around and submit to God.  The destruction of the storm, or drugs, or selfishness, or stubbornness, or pride, all goes away – when we submit to God.”


Doughnuts and Muppets

Here are a few tidbits to help encourage restraint, if you’re working on protecting your waistline, but you have a weakness for doughnuts:

A Krispy Kreme raspberry jam-filled doughnut has about 300 calories, and a Krispy Kreme chocolate iced doughnut has about 350 calories.  Doughnuts can be up to 25% fat because they absorb so much of the fat they’re fried in.  In order to go from a size 6 to a size 14 in just 3 months (so she could portray Bridget Jones), Renee Zellweger says she ate 20 doughnuts a day.  If a person added a doughnut a day to their regular diet, they’d gain about one extra pound every 10 days.  Because doughnuts are fried, they contain a large amount of saturated and trans-fat.  According to one report, doughnuts have more trans-fat than chocolate, peanut butter chocolate bars, and chips.  A single doughnut will meet the maximum amount of trans fat for one day. Now, when you break down and eat a doughnut, just pretend you never read any of this.

Let’s wrap up with some humor.  My friend asked, “I’m settling a marital disagreement: are Bert and Ernie Muppets?” I responded, “I dunno. Do they identify as Muppets? (pause) And now THE most serious answer – tell your husband that Bert and Ernie are whatever you, the wife, want them to be.  Even if you’re wrong.  Happy wife, happy life!”

[To help the curious sleep better at night, here’s the actual answer. Originally all of Henson’s characters were considered Muppets. However, legally speaking, “The Muppets” now only refers to The Muppet Show characters owned by Disney (since 2004).  Sesame Workshop has permission to use the term to refer to Sesame Street characters. Also of note, The Fraggle Rock characters (still owned by the Henson company) were also Muppets to start with, but are no longer referred to as such].

Lastly, a woman at the gate keeps saying “thanks patiently for waiting.”  I think she’s the same lady who wrote the printed instructions for the new electronic device I just purchased.

Glad we could end with some smiles.  Feeling Humbled and blessed by His grace.


Many blessings to you,

Pastor Troy Skinner