Is It Important to Always Tell the Truth?
Ravi Zacharias commented on a broadcast that an interviewer asked him if it is important to always tell the truth. Ravi responded with a question for him: “Do you want a true answer, or do you want me to lie to you right now?” So, how important is it to always tell the truth? Let’s ponder some of the clear Scriptures about truth.
In the first chapter of his powerful gospel, the apostle John wrote: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth…For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”
John 1:14, 17 (NKJV).
In the eighth chapter, John recorded the words of Jesus to the Jews who believed Him: “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:31-32 (NKJV)
Later in this same eighth chapter, Jesus said to the vicious unbelieving Jews who were seeking to kill Him: “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it. But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me. Which of you convicts Me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me? He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God.” John 8:42-47 (NKJV)
In the fourteenth chapter, John tells us that Jesus said to Thomas: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6 (NKJV)
In Jesus’ fervent prayer for His apostles recorded in John 17, Jesus said, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth.” John 17:17-19 (NKJV)
In view of all these pertinent, powerful, penetrating passages about truth, how would you answer the question, “Is it important to always tell the truth?”
Consider the Truth About What America’s Founders Believed
For about 50 years (perhaps more) students in American classrooms have been bombarded with the deceptions of revisionist history that has caused many of them to hate America, hate capitalism, hate Israel and hate Biblical Christianity. It has also motivated them to embrace Marxism (in its various shades of pink and red – socialism and communism). Have you wondered why Bernie Sanders as an outspoken socialist got such a following? Have you wondered why the Democratic party voted God out of their party platform and “booed” Him at their national convention last year? Have you wondered why a high-ranking Democrat in Nebraska yelled in filthy language that he was glad that Republican whip, Steve Scalise, was shot and wishes he had died? Have you wondered why the freedom of speech is being squelched by “liberals” on college campuses and why we have rioting and bloodshed on our streets? Are you appalled at the prevalence of “fake news” coming from mainline sources? Have you wondered, “What is happening to our country?” It all goes back to the undermining of truth by atheistic/Marxist philosophies embodied in revisionist history and revisionist “science” pawned off on our kids. They have pummeled students with propaganda disguised as truth. Take heart! Don’t despair! Remember that Satan is the father of lies – and that he is a defeated foe! Jesus Christ is the Champion! The Conqueror! His truth will ultimately prevail! Even now there are many positive signs that God is giving America another chance! Just this morning (July 4), I heard on a news report that Vice President Mike Pence is emerging as the most prominent conservative leader in America. Praise God! He is exerting a great positive influence on President Donald Trump – and on the Republican party. Please keep praying! And let’s remember that we are “More than Conquerors in Cultural Clashes”! (I even have a book by that title – and I will give you a copy if you will read it and share it with someone.)
Now let’s look at “What America’s Founder’s Believed”…..
“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” – John Adams, America’s Second President
“God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.” – Thomas Jefferson, Author of America’s Declaration of Independence, America’s Third President
“While we are zealously performing the duties of good citizens and soldiers, we certainly ought not to be inattentive to the higher duties of religion. To the distinguished character of Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of Christian.” – General George Washington, America’s First President
“We have staked the whole future of American civilization not on the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.” – James Madison, Primary Author of the U. S. Constitution, America’s Fourth President
“I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth – that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?” – Benjamin Franklin, A signer of both America’s Declaration of Independence and Constitution, founder of the University of Pennsylvania, one of the leading theorists of the American Revolution.
More Good News
The Biblical creationist movement is moving and growing powerfully here in the U.S.A. – and internationally. In May, Answers in Genesis celebrated the 10th anniversary of their big, beautiful Creation Museum – which has attracted over two million visitors (I believe). This month their “Ark Encounter” celebrated its 1st anniversary – and is drawing far more visitors than the Creation Museum! Last year they had as many visitors in the first quarter as they had anticipated for the whole year! This spring in Dallas, Institute for Creation Research broke ground for their huge creation museum called the
“Discovery Center for Science and Earth History”. Coming up this fall, the huge and beautiful Museum of the Bible is scheduled to open in Washington, D.C. Our own Northwest Science Museum has had significant impact in many people’s lives through our Vision Center and speaking appointments over the past three years – and now we are poised for expansive growth in the near future. Please pray with us for our business plan, the right property, plus the co-workers, investors and donors to launch to new heights! “Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! His Truth is Marching On!” Praise God!
For all of you who pray for Overseas Outreach and Northwest Science Museum, I want to share the “Irish Blessing” which hangs on the wall in our home:
“May the road rise up to meet you;
May the wind be always at your back;
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
the rains fall soft upon your fields;
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.”
What Does a Liberal Need?
1. First, he needs to return to the original definition of “liberal”: “Generous.” Even more important, is that he needs to learn to be generous with his own money instead of being abundantly lavish with other people’s tax dollars, while clinging tightly to his own. (It has been verified often that conservatives are more generous with free-will offerings to the needy.)
2. He needs a basic course in true history, science, and philosophy.
3. He needs a basic course in logic.
4. He needs a basic course in anatomy.
5. He needs a basic course in Biblical theology.
6. He needs a basic course in Biblical morality. (Which, of course, includes the subjects of slander, lying, and sexual immorality.)
7. He needs a basic course in human nature. Ravi Zacharias points out that the depravity of the human heart is the easiest Biblical doctrine to verify, but the most strongly resisted. The Bible does not teach, “I’m okay – your okay!” It teaches, “The heart is deceitful above all other things, and desperately wicked…” Jeremiah 17:9. That’s why every one of us needs a new heart – why we need to be born again.
8. He needs to repent, submit his heart, mind, soul and strength to the Lordship of Jesus Christ – and be truly converted. He needs to receive forgiveness and the gift of the Holy Spirit. “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:38 (NKJV)
What Does a Conservative Need?
1. He needs true conversion exactly the same as #8 in the former list. I have a list of conservative leaders that I am praying will come home to Jesus and be converted.
2. He needs to remember that the early Christians suffered persecution rather than taking up arms and promoting violence again their enemies. If they had done that, Saul of Tarsus may have been killed instead of converted and we would not have the amazing ministry and inspired writings of the apostle Paul. The early Christians believed and practiced what Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount. Wouldn’t we be wise to follow their example by obeying His command? “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you…” Matthew 5:43-44 (NKJV)
3. He needs to remember that he is only kidding himself if he thinks he can be a fiscal conservative and a social liberal. If he will not stand against the murder of our most helpless citizens (unborn children) and won’t stand up for God’s definition of gender, marriage, and family, he is a “liberal” (so-called “progressive”), rather than a conservative. “Progressives” are progressing furiously in the wrong direction!
4. He needs to remember the actual words of our founding fathers and reject the lies of revisionist “scholars” (so-called).
I Have Decided to Follow Jesus!
Recently I heard Michael Youseff tell the background for the powerful chorus, “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus.” Many years ago, one family in a remote village in India were genuinely converted to Christ. The chief of the village was incensed with them and called the family to appear before him. He commanded the father to renounce Jesus – or it would cost him dearly. The father replied, “I have decided to follow Jesus – no turning back! The chief ordered his servants to kill the Christian man’s children before his eyes – then once again demanded that he recant. The Christian replied, “The cross before me – the world behind me. No turning back! No turning back!” The hostile chief was enraged and demanded that he renounce his faith or his wife would also be killed. The Christian refused to deny Christ – so they killed his wife. Again the chief demanded that he recant – or next time it would be his own life. The Christian responded, “Though none go with me – still I will follow. I have decided to follow Jesus! No turning back! No turning back!” That did cost him his life. However, the power of his testimony and his resolve were lodged in the chief’s mind and heart. The Holy Spirit convicted him of sin, righteousness, and judgment so that he came to Christ. Then he led his whole village to follow Jesus. They began singing the words of that faithful, resolute Christian – and the song spread around the world from a remote village in India. Never under-estimate the power of one!
Coming up on October 31, 2017, it will be exactly 500 years since one man, Martin Luther, nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the Wittenberg Chapel in East Germany, and the pounding on that door also has resounded around the world. Will you take your stand for Jesus? Are you willing to say as Luther did before the Council, “Here I stand! I can do no other – so help me, God!”? Can you sing with sincerity and truth, “I have decided to follow Jesus – no turning back! No turning back!”?
“Freedom is not a gift from government.
Freedom is a gift from God.”
– President Donald J. Trump
Trinity’s Cat Scan
“I did a cat scan and found this!” she told me. Then she handed me a paper clip. Her “cat scan” was scanning the carpet for any foreign objects while crawling around on all fours. Question: Are you scanning the heavens looking for Jesus to break through the clouds in all His glory? That is our blessed hope! Keep looking up!
“I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus…For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.” Philippians 3:14; 20-21 (NKJV)
We plan to leave on July 14 for some vacation time and speaking appointments in western OR & WA:
Sunday, July 16, at Oakland Church of Christ, Oakland, Oregon
9:30 Class: “Ukraine – Land of Danger, Great Needs, and Open Doors”
10:45 Worship Service: “God of Power and Provision through Prayer: My Incredible Journey”
Thursday, July 20 – Eagle Creek, OR.-Jesse Leininger’s Class – “Beginning of My Walk with the Lord”
Sunday, July 23 – Gates Community Church of Christ, Gates, Oregon -same as July 16
Monday, July 24 – Della’s birthday trip to the coast with good friends, Jim and Kim Scott
Friday, July 28 – Apologetics Forum, Arlington, Washington (near Seattle)
My topic: “Monstrous Problems – Awesome God”
Check with Heinz Lycklama at 425-501-5075 or www.ApologeticsForum.org
Sunday, July 30 – Bryant Community Church, Arlington, Washington
Contact: Chuck Barnet, Pastor – Cell phone: 425-530-0238 or Church phone: 360-435-8311
Mission Trip Plans
I plan to leave for Ukraine on September 25 and return on October 16. This trip will have 3 purposes.
1. To get Tony VanManen acquainted with our ministry partners in Kiev, Kharkiv, Mala Viska, and Odessa during the first ten days.
2. To pray and plan with our three Overseas Outreach representative couples in Ukraine: Zhenya and Natasha Molodchy, Stephen and Iryna Yagilnicky, and John and Ira Murphy.
3. To teach and preach the unsearchable riches of Christ in homes, college classrooms and churches at every opportunity.
If you noticed that something didn’t quite make sense in our June letter as you were reading the White Fields prayer request for the nation of Liberia – the problem was not with you. We skipped a line. Here is how it should read:
“Secondly, pray for more fruit that is being constantly harvested in Liberia. White Fields began starting churches in Liberia during the worst part of the civil war that claimed 250,000 victims. From one church started in 1997 to 55 churches today. Praise God! Every preacher that we have taught in Liberia is a soul winner. Please pray they will keep the harvest coming.”
From Our Mailbox
“We are so grateful to the Lord for friendship with you. It was honor for us to get to know you. Thank you for the support of our small church. We would like to share the blessings from the Lord.
On Saturday we had the first baptism at our small church. There was just one young lady, but she is a true Christian and sincerely believes in God. We thank God for this soul; she is in the Christian college now for one more year and plans to help us with Sunday school.
Please pray for a new place for our church, as we had to leave the previous one, and now the Sunday service is at our house, as well as Bible study on Fridays. We have two young couples who are going to get married and then serve the Lord with us. Vova will marry both couples.
I took part in the medical clinic ministry. It went very well. An American team came and I was one of the translators. We went to a few small towns and consulted people, gave away medicine and glasses. I am so thankful for this opportunity to serve the Lord and people. I am going to translate at a summer camp for children who never heard about Jesus.
May God bless you,
Volodia and Maryana”
Rick’s reply to Volodia and Maryana:
Your email arrived a bit late to include it in our June Prayer Letter, but we want to include it in our July issue so many others can rejoice and pray with us for you over the baptism and progress in your new church plant.
We will pray for God to provide just the right meeting place for the congregation, and we praise God for your home as the location of the house church and the Friday evening Bible study. We also praise God for the two couples who plan to get married and serve God together with you. We praise God for transforming Volodia’s life, for your obedience to God in choosing to marry him and help him in transforming his trashed house into a beautiful home and place of worship. You and your house are trophies of His amazing grace. I’m very glad that Zhenya Molodchy opened the opportunity for me to get acquainted with both of you, as well as Igor.
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13. May Almighty God continue to expand your godly influence for His glory!
Yours & His, Rick
Remember Me, America
Remember me, America.
I was once your son.
I fought and died in Valley Forge
With General Washington.
I was there again in Gettysburg
On that tragic, tragic day,
When brother fought against brother.
The blue against the gray.
I was there with Teddy Roosevelt,
A charge called San Juan Hill.
Some came back to fight again,
But I just lay there still.
I was there at Pearl Harbor,
On a day called Infamy.
And I’m still there with my shipmates,
At the bottom of the sea.
D-day, June 6, 1944.
We stormed the beaches of Normandy.
We fought uphill every inch of the way.
We routed those Germans and we pushed them back,
But oh, the price we had to pay.
I heard the Seals say one night in Korea,
“We can take it. I know we will.”
So I died again in a place they named Porkchop Hill.
Vietnam, Vietnam, when will we ever learn?
I’m one of many thousands who did not return.
I left my town, my wife, my kids, my home so dear for war.
And died again in a scud attack in a place called Desert Storm.
So in my eternity, my thoughts will go to thee.
I won’t forget you, America.
But please, America, do not forget me.
“Freedom is not free!” This quotation is to remind us that although it may be free to us now – others paid the price (sometimes a terrible price). So, not only on Memorial Day, Flag Day, and the 4th of July should we celebrate our freedom and remember those who risked and sacrificed life and limbs for our freedom – but every day. Especially let’s remember that our freedom in Christ from the bondage of sin, death and hell was paid for by the precious blood of Jesus! Can you hear Jesus say, “Remember Me, Christian?
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1 (NKJV)
“And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like
silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1 Peter 1:17-19 (NKJV)
Is Jesus There?
by Ed Saunders
“Is Jesus there? When your nights are blue.
When you could cry the whole day through.
When dreams have failed,
When disappointments have prevailed,
Is Jesus there? Is He with you?
Is Jesus there?
When you are glad?
When you can find nothing bad?
When you can find the joy of life the whole day through,
Is Jesus there? Is He with you?
Is Jesus there? Is He with you?
My friend, is He there?
I hope He is and I hope you are true
Is Jesus there? Is He with you?
Important Notice: Answered Prayer – New Prayer Request
Do you remember the request we shared months ago about getting our concise, but comprehensive, Christian evidence book, “READY TO GIVE AN ANSWER”, translated into Turkish and Arabic, and perhaps into German? Church planters for Love of Christ Church in Odessa (the major port city of Ukraine) have distributed many Russian copies of this book – and want copies in Turkish and Arabic for the floods of refugees from the middle east. The praise is that our friend, Werner Gitt (renowned information scientist) has located translators for Turkish and German. (Germany also has floods of refugees – and international students. We have many friends and co-workers there.)
Werner wrote, “I have good news for you:
Now I will tell you about my search for translators of your book Ready to Give an Answer. In my opinion it is an excellent book to explain the Gospel. God was with you when you formulated the ideas.
TURKISH: Jasmin Yildiz is willing to translate your book into Turkish. She is jobless and therefore she needs the money for translating. I said to her I will pay 1500 Euro for the translation work.
GERMAN: Two young ladies who are excellent in English are willing to translate your book into German. I said I will pay 1000 Euro for the translation work.
ARABIC: I don’t know translators, who are willing to translate a book.
I will try to find people who can help to pay for the translations.”
Please pray with us for the funds for translation and publication, as well as for finding a translator for Arabic, if this is part of God’s plan. If you know someone who would like to invest in this evangelistic project, please let us know. We will donate a copy of the book in English to you, if you will read it and share it with
Summary of Prayer Requests
1. Please pray earnestly for deep spiritual awakening in America.
2. Please pray for funds and wisdom for those ministering to orphans and displaced persons, for addiction recovery centers and for the new churches being planted in Ukraine.
3. Please pray for safety and effective trips for us, both in the U.S. and Ukraine.
4. Funds for translations.
“Blessed is the Nation whose God is the Lord…” Psalm 33:12
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Our freedom is in peril – Defend it with all your Might!