NF – Mansion, and the Meaninglessness of Chasing After Wind

It’s interesting what was once considered a mansion. This photo, for me, is a reminder of the ills of the exponentially growing expectation of the American dream. What was once thought a mansion, now looks almost average, and yet depression, chemical dependence (legal and illegal), and violent crime in our nation is not improving. It’s an image of the soul decay of serving at the foot of the idol of earthly riches. NF, the first Christian rapper to be signed by a major record label, Capitol Records, released this album cover today for his début album dropping March 31. You can see the video for the single here.

Great work by NF, presenting the collision of human reality and biblical truth in an unexpected medium.  I have been both of the people represented in the video, at both ends of the spectrum, and found depression at both ends. The answer only came when God opened my eyes to see that no matter what I had, or what I did, I was never going to have peace until I understood my purpose. The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. “God is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him.” He is what our souls are longing for. Until we understand that, we will continue be people who heap up possessions to fill our emptiness, or be those who are unsatisfied with life or feel insufficient because we can not keep up with the perceived success of others. Both paths lead to the same place.

Ecclesiastes 1:14  I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind.

 

Matthew 6:19-22  Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

 

Sacrifice for Tomorrow

1 Corinthians 13:12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known.

1 Corinthians 2:9 That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

Hebrews 10:35 Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. 36 For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.

Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

A better tomorrow never comes without sacrifice today.
Do good…share what you have…sacrifice in faith.
Endure. Embrace.
This life is not the reward…but tomorrow…

This post was inspired by the teaching of John Piper…

And the Lecrae song, “Sacrifice”

MAKE WAR!!!

Much to my surprise I recently discovered that Tedashii, my favorite Christian rapper, actually studied under my pastor, Mitch Maher.  Tedashii’s lyrics are impressive, holding strictly to sound Bible doctrine.  Tedashii will be headlining the NGEN Boomin’ concert on Tuesday, August 6 in Houston, and I encourage everyone to come out and see the show with me.  He has an excellent catalogue of music, and has reached as high as #2 on the Billboard Gospel Chart, and #9 on the Billboard Christian Chart.  Additionally, the KSBJ/NGEN concerts are excellent, and the KSBJ Birthday Concert earlier this year was an absolute blast.

1 Peter 2:11 Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.

Romans 8:13  For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

In the song “Make War” Tedashii does very well to espouse the desperate need for believers to aggressively make war with the sin in our lives.  The song was inspired by a sermon from pastor and author John Piper, in which he said:

“I hear so many Christians murmuring about their imperfections and their failures and their addictions and their short-comings, And I see so little war! ‘Murmur, murmur, murmur… Why am I this way?’ MAKE WAR!”

See the song with lyrics below (I strongly suggest reading them):

“My heart, my passion, my desire is that we would have men who would fight sin, and at the end of the day, produce other men like them in discipleship.” -Tedashii

The John Piper sermon mentioned above was inspired by a famous teaching by English Puritan Theologian John Owen in which he said, “Be killing sin or it will be killing you.” 

It can be all to easy to fall into the snare of downplaying the danger of sin. Conversely, the necessity of uprooting and completelely killing sin can not be emphasized enough. Often times when aspiring to overcome our afflictions we compartmentalize or don’t go the full measure in addressing our issues. Sadly we often leave ways for our sin to somehow find it’s way back in the door. So many kings of the Old Testament did what was right in the sight of the LORD and yet failed to remove the high places where the sacrifices were made to idol gods. Each time this led to the people of Israel eventually falling back into the old rituals of sacrifice at the high places – straying from God – returning to their old idols. This is symbolically similar to how, you and I, while striving to honor God, often fail to remove every last opportunity to return to our sin. We must be fully dedicated to completely removing all areas for temptation so that once we overcome a sin we are done with it once and for all. Like cancer we must remove every last remnant so that we will never be afflicted by the illness again.

Hopefully I will see many of you at the NGEN Boomin’ show, and we will all be inspired to make war with our sin! MAKE WAR!!!