Bible Boot Camp – July 15, 2013

What a wonderful day we had today in class. The class was energetic and so was I, a great combo!

Class today was basically 4 parts, they were:

1. ‘Who Dats’.
2. Summation of the Trayvon Martin situation.
3. “Romans 6:11 Tree”.
4. A quick review of ‘Moral Relativism’
5. A Mr. Steiger Dream Story.

Today’s ‘Who Dats’ were:

*George Zimmerman (with busted nose & head)
*Trayvon Martin (Last pic of him in 7-11 and getting high)
*Nicki Minaj

Now that the George Zimmerman trial has ended and he has been cleared of the charges leveled against him, and others that were not, it seemed right to review, from a Christian perspective, the tragedy of this whole ordeal.

An axiom in our class is the following phrase: “People ALWAYS do what they want to do.” This is as basic of truth as man has at his disposal, it is always the case. Many do not agree with the statement upon first hearing it, examples will be offered as to why it’s not foolproof, but those example all fall under scrutiny.

The tragic truth of Trayvon Martin is that he was well on his way to becoming a bad kid, if he wasn’t already there. That alone is no excuse to murder him, however, and in this case, and contrary to much public opinion, no murder was committed.

As hard a truth as it is for many to swallow Trayvon Martin, for whatever reason he had in mind, attacked and was beating George Zimmerman very badly. One can argue that Zimmerman should have backed off, but, and again, Trayvon martin had no genuine reason to assault George Zimmerman.

The simple truth is that he wanted to, otherwise he wouldn’t have. That is a simple, but hard, truth.

George Zimmerman felt his life to be in imminent danger and did what people do in those situations – protect themselves from death.

This matter is probably far from over, but for the time being George Zimmerman has been declared an innocent man.

Nicki Minaj was used because she ‘tweeted’ the following, and reprehensible’ tweet about Zimmerman:

‪#‎JusticeForTrayvon‬ & when they put that ass in jail, u BETTER be in general population. Should be PRE-MEDITATED MURDER‪#‎TRIGGERHAPPY‬ ASSHOLE”

I implored the kids not to support people who think and speak like that. In good conscience no Christian should.

“Romans 6:11 Tree”

I then put up a picture of a very interesting tree. While walking with my wife the other night I saw a ‘Half Dead/Half Alive’ tree, that is, one side was completely barren of leaves, the other side full of them. I really stood out.

I used this imagery to explain Romans 6:11, which reads:

“Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

I asked the kids to explain this to me. None could. This should not be considered surprising, as most Christians cannot, even remotely, explain this passage, one of the greatest pieces of ‘Good News’ the Gospel has to offer.

So, I made ’em sweat a little, asked a number of students, even the Pastor’s kid who, God love him, gave the greatest wrong answer attempt of the day. Those are the treasures of being teacher, aching the students try mightily, even if they don’t always succeed!

I explained that in civilization we have laws, and that when we break those laws (I used a recent example of a speeding ticket I got on 53 coming home from church) we LEGALLY have to pay for our ‘sins’.

Being human we are ALL sinners, and in need of Salvation, but being Saved by trusting in Christ as your Savior relieves you from the LEGAL effects of our sinning. This is not to say that we *should* continue in sin (we should not!), only that the penalty FOR those sins have been dealt with LEGALLY for us by the Lord Jesus Christ.

He paid so that we can live without the burden of ever wondering what our standing with Him is. The result is a healthy life, ready for service because we’re grateful for what’s been done for us, not compelled to serve because we’re forever wondering if we’ve done enough to remain Saved.

We moved onto a brief review of ‘Moral Relativism’. I drew a picture on the board of a foundation, with a home about to be placed on it. Before we addressed that, though, we all recalled the story of the “Three Little Pigs”, which apparently I had all wrong, as in my understanding the ‘Big Bad Wolf’ at two of them, but the kids assured me that was incorrect! (I’m going to wrote a non-PC version very soon.)

After having a little fun with that we read the biblical version of that story – we read the parable of the ‘Two Builders’, which reads as follows:

Matthew 7:24-27

“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
“And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.”

I asked them to explain this to me, which, for the most part, the class did well. I attempted to explain to the kids that this story is meant to reassure us that living the Christian life would result in moral clarity, as opposed to relativism, and that as a result we would be not only better people but better ‘adjusted’, as well.

Our house should reside on a firm foundation of biblical wisdom guided by the Holy Spirit, and therefore not subject to random change as differing situations arise. The Christian life should be one of:

Integrity & Coherency (These were explained)

The concept of a cracked, or compromised, foundation would therefore result in ‘Moral Relativism’. I used the following example of a ‘cracked Christian foundation’:

Suppose a Christian girl believed and professed abortion to be wrong. After hearing that a close friend was pregnant at 16 this girl, wanting to comfort her friend, assured her that no matter what she decided to do (keep or abort the child) that she would support her.

This is ‘Moral Relativism’. We talked a bit more on this, hopefully the point was made.

Then we moved on to “Mr. Steiger’s Dream’. Every so often I will share what is hopefully a delightful, entertaining, but completely relevant, story to the kids. In this case it was about a dream I had last Wednesday, a dream which will haunt me for some time to come!

In the evening I read an amazing story about genetic engineering. Scientists have broken new barriers in terms of designing portions of chromosomes. This is not to be confused with understanding what chromosomes do what in our DNA, rather, this is DESIGNER chromosomes. What this means is that bio-chemists are now using composite parts of DNA (amino acids, polypeptide bonds, etc…) and CREATING new chromosomes.

This was bone chilling to me, as in May of 2010 on a Thursday evening I gave a teaching to our church suggesting we were maybe 5 to 10 years away from such things. Turns out were closer than I that.

So having read that, an digesting the impact, like many Old Testament prophets I was deeply troubled! For whatever reason that night the “trouble” remained resident…

I had a dream, a nightmare, really, that I was in the end times, and many of the visions of the Bible were physically manifest on Earth. There was Daniel’s Statue (found in Daniel chapter 2), the 4 Horsemen of Revelation, along with the “Best with 7 heads and 10 horns that came from the sea”, and even the false prophet thrown in, for good measure!

Sounds cool, right? It wasn’t!

In the case of Daniel’s Statue the main parts are easily identified: Gold, Silver, Brass, Iron and then this mysterious “miry clay” (Daniel 2:43). Well, the first group are metals, some elements, but whet in the world is “miry clay”? Hold on tot hat thought.

Then the 4 Horsemen: The White, Red, Black & Pale Horses! Awful things, scary each one!

Then the dreaded Beast: “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.”

And finally, the False Prophet, for good measure!

Well, in my bizarre dream it became apparent to me that ALL of these creatures were CREATIONS of mad bio-chemists in the future, who were able to synthesize life, designer life! For the most part these images the Bible uses to illustrate kingdoms and persons became vile creations of mankind, of people lacking the discernment to keep Pandora’s Box shut, and do to their insane desire to ‘Out-God God’ they doomed mankind.

Yes, this was very crazy, and caused me to wake up in a dreamlike panic, stubbing my foot on a pointed Morning Star whole manically searching for my iPad to see what Drudge Report was saying about all of this..!!

Now, as crazy as this sounds it’s not as nuts as it may seem. There is some deep truth wrapped up in the “miry clay” and the Pale Horse may represent bio-chemical disaster and even the Beast, who was once supposedly dead but lived could be a result of some genetic engineering we don’t yet understand.

Those, however, are all topics for another day and another sermon.

My ‘Student of the Week’ was Zach Seymour. Zach didn’t miss a heartbeat when I posed the question to him about whether or not God’s morals were relative, if God, Himself, was morally relativistic.

Zach answered with an absolutely NOT, almost causing e to pass out. he even told me why when I asked him. My faith in Christian youth was immediately restored!

Thank you, Zach..!!