The Pursuit of God

Serious Topics for Serious Christians

Understanding Your Perverse Fantasies: A Sign of Stress, Not Defectiveness

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There’s a widespread belief among Christians that if a man’s spiritual priorities were in the right order, he wouldn’t have certain kinds of thoughts, he wouldn’t be hooked on porn, and he wouldn’t have certain nasty desires welling up within him 24/7.  And yet the truth is that a man can have excellent priorities and be embracing all the right soul attitudes while he is being plagued with some very dark mental fantasies.  The psychological principles we’re going to discuss in this post can be very helpful to anyone who is feeling tormented with perverse fantasies of any kind.  When you’re obsessing over certain kinds of themes, you can easily end up shunned by both the mainstream Christian community as well as the world at large.  Happily neither of these human groups are accurately conveying God’s assessment of you.  And once you understand a few basic principles about where perverse fantasies come from, you can stop treating yourself like a worm and become more receptive to the compassion and help God is offering you. Read more of this post

Ecclesiastes: The Ramblings of a Spiritual Fool

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The Book of Ecclesiastes is a major downer. It’s twelve chapters of King Solomon giving us the perspective of a man who has been there, done that, and is completely over it. It’s the memoirs of a man who spent his whole life chasing after the lusts of his flesh, only to conclude in the end that living to please his earthsuit is completely meaningless.

“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” (Ecc. 1:2)

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False Formulas for Salvation – 1 John 1:9

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“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

The same John who wrote the Gospel of John and Revelation also wrote the three epistles known as 1 John, 2 John, and 3 John.  While 2 and 3 John don’t get out much, 1 John has several famous one liners in it, including this frequently quoted statement about salvation being obtained through the confession of sin.  But is this really accurate?  Is merely listing off our sins enough to grant us salvation and cause use to be blameless in the sight of God?  No, it’s really not.  In fact, salvation doesn’t have anything to do with God considering us to be “blameless.”  We just think it does because, like the New Testament apostles, we’re focusing on the wrong things (see Jesus vs. the NT Jews: What it Means to Please God). Read more of this post

False Formulas for Salvation – John 3:16

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“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

This is one of the most widely quoted verses from the Christian Bible, and we often use it to summarize God’s requirements for salvation.  But is this really an accurate summary?  Not even close.  In fact, when you really stop to think about it, John 3:16 is a very lousy verse to use to try and help a non-believer end up on the right side of eternity.  Now let’s learn why. Read more of this post

Psalm 90: Moses Gripes at Yahweh

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When you think of the psalms of the Bible, think “Jewish song lyrics,” because that is what they are.  The psalms were meant to be sung out loud, which is why you’ll find the occasional bit of musical instruction thrown in.  The ancient Jews were a very theatrical people who valued the public sharing of personal emotions.  So while you might have a hard time picturing why a guy like David would want to broadcast his personal cry for Yahweh to give him a clean heart after his rebellious stint with Bathsheba, realize that Psalm 51 wouldn’t be in the Bible today unless David chose to share that private prayer with his royal staff.  Read more of this post

Serving a God Who Lies

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God has a long history of lying to human beings.  This is one of those uncomfortable truths that none of us want to deal with, so we try to ignore it as long as possible.  But when God calls you to function as one of His prophets, you end up forced to deal with the lying business, because you’re the one He’s very likely to do some of His lying through.  Who wants to look like an idiot by prophesying something that doesn’t happen?  No one.  But prophets aren’t the only ones who get affected by God’s deceptiveness.  If you pursue God long enough, it’s only a matter of time until He lies to you about something you really care about.  Then what?  You’ll feel all bitter and disillusioned, of course.  There’s nothing fun about the first time God hits you with some bit of crushing disillusionment.  It’s rather like a first heartbreak—it’s really miserable and it permanently changes you.  Of course it’s a lot easier to get sympathy for a broken heart than it is for God lying to you.  Among Christians, it’s taboo to use the phrase “God lies,” and souls who are caught in this stage with Him often end up shunned, harshly criticized, and blamed for all sorts of things.  This is one of the reasons we discuss the topic of God lying in such depth on our site: because when you’re dealing with it for the first time, it’s a very lonely road.  Read more of this post

The Real End Times: Why Israel is Irrelevant

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If you read through our material on the end times, it won’t take you long to notice something very strange.

We don’t talk about Israel.

But wait—we are prophesying about the end times, aren’t we?  Yes, we are.  And we are claiming to be getting our information directly from God, aren’t we?  Yes, we are.  Unlike so many false prophets who get together and synchronize their “visions” before they publicly broadcast their messages, we don’t give a flip about what any other yahoo is telling you about the end times.  Such is the freedom of knowing when God is talking to you: you don’t need the big boys to agree with you.  Read more of this post

Your Second Chance At Life: How To Use It Well

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God could end your life at any time.  This is true for all of us, but for the most part, we don’t really give much thought to God’s absolute control over life and death.  But when God arranges for us to have some close brush with death, suddenly our perspective changes.  Maybe He healed you from some fatal disease.  Maybe He saved you from dying in some horrible collision.  Maybe He botched your attempt to commit suicide.  Maybe you were impaled by a bullet or a knife that barely missed puncturing some critical organ.  Maybe you almost died on an operating table.  Maybe you’ve lived past the expiration date that medical experts put on you.  Maybe you survived someone’s attempt to have you killed in the womb.  Maybe you were saved from execution at the last second.  Whatever the circumstances, when God does this sort of thing, He’s forcing you to see how easily He could have taken your life.  He’s also making His decision to prolong your life on this planet feel like the very personal, purposeful decision that it is.  The big question now becomes: why?  Why is God keeping you here?  Why didn’t He have you die when it seemed you should have?  Why is He making an exception in your case?  If you’re currently pondering these questions, then you’re definitely on the right track, and helping you stay on the right track is the purpose of this post.  Read more of this post

Returning to the God You Divorced: Guidance for Christians

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When we first begin our relationship with God, we bring a list of ultimatums with us.  That list contains a bunch of behaviors which we won’t tolerate God engaging in.  That list defines the limits our of willingness to be dominated by Him. Sure, we’ll stay as long as God doesn’t engage in some unpardonable sin.  But if He does cross certain lines with us, we’re divorcing Him, and it will be all His fault. Read more of this post

Are all sexual perverts going to Hell?

Are all sexual perverts going to Hell?

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There is something about the mention of sexual sins in the New Testament that triggers a selective memory response in Christians. We know there are certain verses which specifically say that all sexual perverts will go to Hell and we like to refer to them whenever the topic comes up. We don’t recite the actual verses, we just say something general like “God says all perverts will go to Hell.” We do this because we have forgotten what the verses really say. If we remembered them accurately, we’d stop quoting them so often because when they’re isolated from the rest of Scripture, these verses actually say that we are all going to Hell. Read more of this post