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A couple thoughts on “50 shades” for Christians as the movie gets ready to premiere….

– Yahoo news reports that 1/5 of the film is sex

– An article from the UK news, talks about pornography not being the issue but sexual education. The pornography that use as their example is the 50 Shades of Gray movie.

– A secular post I read from someone praising “50 Shades” for bringing female sexuality to the fore font, called it porn or pornography at least 4 times. Again, not a blog complaining about it but a female, secular professional praising it.

– Some Christians who are trying to justify liking it and seeing it are deflecting by saying why is wrong for women to have sexual movies but men can and no one says anything. The truth is sexual movies are not ok for either gender.

– Some Christians who are trying to justify liking it and seeing it are deflecting by saying the Bible does not say the type of sex in the movie is wrong in a happy, marriage relationship. First, i take a tad bit of issue on that but that’s for another day. Even if you were correct in the statement, the characters in the movie are not married. Even if they were, that still doesn’t make watching it ok.

If any married couple put out a sex tape, it doesn’t make it any less wrong that you watch it just because they were married. There is no upside to this line of thinking.

– Some call it a love story because in the end she saves him from himself and being off track. If you are a Christian, you know the love of Christ that reflects in our lives and this simply is not it.

So, does that mean if you are a Christian and go see this, I will look down on you as a pastor? Not at all. It does mean as a brother, I pray for better for you and your intimacy understanding and I love you either way.

Again, random thoughts to consider….

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

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heaven-is-for-real-dvd-cover-21

As the movie “Heaven is for Real” comes out on DVD, there is a renewed interest in the story of four year old Colton Burpo. While I am more a fan of the book than the movie, I will admit the movie is very entertaining and uplifting.

That said, let me address a couple things.

The main concern I have with the film is that it leaves out the most important point. The answer to the question “How do I get to go to Heaven?” They came close a couple times and in one scene had a great opportunity but missed the boat.

When Nancy from the church came to Pastor Todd, she asked him about her son that passed away and if he thought he might be in heaven or not. Pastor Todd’s answer was “Do you think God loves your son any less than he loves mine?”

The answer, of course, is God loves them (and all of us) the same. However, the implication is if God loves us, we all go to heaven. This is simply untrue.

God loves us all so much that He sacrificed His Son for us but it is up to us rather or not we accept His gift of reconciliation of reject it. Here’s the answer of how we not only go to Heaven someday but how we have a relationship with Him now….

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.  For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10: 8-13

The movie is a good start to the conversation but if we as the church do not complete the conversation, many will walk out of the movie not only with an incomplete thought but a dangerous one.

Here’s the second thing I want to throw out there….

I had a friend a couple weeks ago ask me if I believed the story was true. He asked me all kinds of questions about if I believed people looked that way in heaven, if they would act that way in heaven, and the like.

I do not know if Colton went to heaven or not. If God wanted to take him to heaven, He certainly could. However, that’s not the only answer.

Luke tells us in Acts  on ear2: 16-18 “And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; even on my male servants and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.

Colton could have had a vision from God for multiple reasons including the book and the movie. God could reveal himself in a way that not only a four year old could understand but that would bring confirmation to his father Todd to bring him closer to God. While “pop pop” may or may not look like the  young man he was on earth in his heavenly body, God could surely reveal him that way so that Todd could later understand that there was confirmation within the vision.

So, am I against “Heaven is for Real”? Not at all! Go see it and/or read the book. However, bring bigger thinking and have deeper conversations about the message behind them.

Heaven is for real…. and God wants to bring you home someday. However, that is really up to you.

If you have any questions about heaven or having a relationships with Jesus Christ, feel free to touch base with me.

Pastor Tom Hypes

theshepherdsfellowship.org

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About eight years ago, I was a youth pastor with a group of about 30 kids. One night, as we were talking about salvation, one of the kids talked about his view of salvation. Once he came to the Lord, he was ready for heaven. However, when we you sin (tell a white lie), you lose the salvation until you ask for forgivness and get it back. What a stressful and unBiblical way to live and I felt for him as he spoke about the back and forth relationship. Being a reader, I gave him Brennan Manning’s book “Ragamuffin Gospel” and as we talked more, he had a more complete view of God’s grace. I wish I had this book at that time as well.

Dr. Jeremiah offers a tapestry of stories from the life of John Newton (author of the hymn Amazing Grace), the apostle Paul, and the Scriptures to paint a picture of the grace that God offers us. It beautifuly inspires us to dive into His love while being people of grace ourselves.

If you have struggled with a picture of a troubled, mean, and judgmental God that you can not relate to, may I suggest you may not have yet met the God who offered His Son due to His love for you? Maybe it would be worth taking the price of a meal at Applebees and get a new vantage point. It would be worth the read….

I recieved a free copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through booksneeze.com in exchange for an honest review.

That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10: 9

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Like a billion other people I know, I have felt a desire to write a book for years (even if I suck at spelling). There have been topics that come and go in my mind and never felt right. Every once in a long while, I would get a topic on my heart that I would get excited about but would not work out do to time constraints. Then, with a little time passing, I would get to the point that I would get bored with or at least loss the zeal for it.

However, something feels a little different with what is happening at this point (now I just need to find the time to type).

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I just finished a book called “The Almost True Story of Ryan Fisher” by Rob Stennett. I picked it up off a review of a fellow blogger.

Here’s a quick review….

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