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Saturday, March 14, 2009


If a golfer posts an exceptionally good score, he may tell his buddies, “If it’s okay with you guys, I’d like to keep the scorecard. I may frame it.” However, if he posts an excruciatingly painful score, he may say, “If nobody wants this scorecard, I’ll just toss it in the trashcan.”

That’s the way it is with golfers. They like to savor a low score but hide the evidence of a bad score.

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read a bumper sticker that announced BD GOL4. Apparently the motorist was determined to go public about his atrocious golf. Maybe the license plate was some kind of penance or masochism. Why else would he notify everyone that he was a bad golfer?

Of course, it is remotely possible that BD stood for “Birdie. But wouldn’t a birdie golfer place an R between the B and the D?

If believers followed BD GOL4’s example and published their personal weaknesses or bad habits on their license plates, would the following messages flow through traffic?

PAY l8

Isn’t it good that God doesn’t ask us to publicize our bad habits and besetting sins on vanity license plates? Instead, He invites us to confess them, lay them aside like worn-out clothes, and replace them with Christlike virtues (1 John 1:9; Colossians 3:8–14).

If you need victory over a nagging sin, claim that victory now. You may want to celebrate the victory by purchasing a vanity license plate that reads 4GVN or PSM 103 12.

© Jim Dyet

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Weasel Words

A TV commercial offers a CD that explains how to gather stored items around the house and list them on eBay. The promoter uses the words, “and probably put money in your pocket.” “Probably” is a weasel word. Like other weasel words—“may,” “likely,” “possibly,” and “could”—“probably” conveniently enables a promoter to weasel his way out of an outright promise. If the consumer does not obtain the results he expects, the seller is off the hook.

The promises in God’s Word do not include weasel words. They are ironclad, foolproof, and irrevocable. Here are just a few examples of biblical promises you and I can rely on. Do not let yourself or anyone else insert a weasel word like “probably” in any of them.

• “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My Father’s hand” (John 10:29).

• “ . . . I will come again and receive you to Myself . . . “ (John 14:3).

• “You will keep him in perfect peace. Whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You” (Isaiah 26:3).

• “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

• “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

• “ . . . I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).

Banks may fail, but we can always bank on God’s promises!

Monday, March 9, 2009

No Religion

Fifteen percent of respondents in a recent poll claimed no religion. Vermont heads the list of states in which people said they have no religion. I’m not sure how I would respond if asked if I had religion. I am a Christian, but I don’t have a religion. Christianity is a way of life, not a commitment to religion. It is possible to be religious but not a Christian. It is also possible to be a Christian but not religious.

Jesus did not come into the world to establish a religion; He came to bring life—abundant life—to all who believe on Him as their Savior. Read John 3:16; 10:10; and 1 John 5:11–13. Religion is a matter of accepting and following prescribed beliefs and practices in the hope of gaining eternal life. Christianity is a matter of accepting the Bible’s invitation to believe on a Person—Jesus Christ (Matthew 11:28–30; Romans 3:23–26; 6:23). Religion insists there is something a person must do to earn his way to Heaven. Christianity teaches that Jesus paid the full penalty of our sins on the cross and is the way to Heaven (John 14:6; 1 Peter 1:18–21; 3:18).

You can see why I might be a pollster’s nightmare.