Saturday, October 31, 2009

Task Force Tagalitas Partnership

Ten-Four Ministries is humbled to have a wonderful relationship with Dr. Adiel H. De Torres with Task Force Tagalitas in the Philippines. Below are the latest photos from our partnership and the Armor of God Project.

The Deputy Regional Director for Administration with the Philippine National Police Recieves 30 vests from Pastor Torres.

PSSupt. Primitivo "Jun" Tabujara receives 6 Level3A bullet-resistant vests from the Armor of God Project.

October 31st - A Tribute

This was originally posted on November 15, 2008.

October 31, 1517, is probably not a date that you heard in History class. As Christians it is a date we should all remember and it is a date that many in America are looking at.

October 31, 1517, was the day a Monk by the name of Martin Luther nailed a document to a church door in Wittenberg. That document contained a list of 95 Theses that started the Reformation that would eventually sweep across his native German Land, over to Europe and to the entire World. What would encompass two centuries and give us the likes of John Bunyan and John Calvin, the Reformation is continuing to play an important role today.

Today, Europe has forgotten who God is and they have turned to everything secular including the worship of Darwin over Jesus Christ.

America, once considered a Christian Nation, is anything but one today. We think that Europe is an Ocean away but the fact is we are seeing more and more of what Europe is today here in America.

In the face of what we are seeing in America, we are also seeing a revival of sorts. No, nothing has been nailed on a door but we are seeing the Gospel preached today in very isolated instances like it was preached 500 years ago. In the face of an America that has legalized Abortion and so called preachers that tell us there is more than one way other than Jesus, we are seeing bold Christians and Pastors standing up for the true Gospel. John MacArthur, Paul Washer, John Piper and many others are standing up for the Gospel.

We are seeing persecution of our Pastors here in America just like what has been happening for years in Europe. A Pastor 50 miles from me was told if he kept preaching the Gospel like he was that "he wouldn't last long." Unfortunately many other pastors have softened their message to comply with the so called Christians among them. If the Pastors are being persecuted who do you think is next?

Christians, it's time to stand for the truth. You may not be called to preach on a box in the park but if you are setting in a Church that is promoting everything other than the Gospel of Jesus Christ, you are part of the problem.

While all of Martin Luther's statements are powerful I believe any writer places great emphasis on the first and the last thing they write. Here is what Martin Luther said first and last:

1) "When our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, said "Repent", He called for the entire life of believers to be one of repentance."

95) "And let them thus be more confident of entering heaven through many tribulations rather than through a false assurance of peace."

When the persecution and imprisonment comes the Truth of Jesus Christ will stand and the pretenders will run away. Christian, are you ready?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Across America: City #19

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department protects the 19th largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and for Chief Rodney Monroe. For the next 18 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Simplicity of the Message

What does it mean to "Repent and Believe The Gospel"?

This message was preached by Travis Yates, Director of Ten-Four Ministries, at Collinsville Community Church on September 13, 2009.

The Sovereignty of God in Creation

This is the 3rd chapter of A.W. Pink’s book titled “The Sovereignty of God” This chapter deals with the perfection of God as it is shown through creation. One of my favorite quotes from this chapter is “He (God) might create or not create according to his own good pleasure.” I love the idea of God not creating something because he didn’t want to. We sit here and complain about the things that he did create, and never think about the things that he didn’t create! We all know that cops are good complainers. We can pass hours in a shift meeting with another officer and talking about all the things that we don’t like.

But who are we to complain about what God is doing? “Who was there to challenge his right?” A created object never questions it’s creator. We were created for God’s pleasure. Don’t believe me? Read Revelation 4:11. It says right there that everything that is created is for God’s pleasure. That is why some people are better at certain things than others! People are that way because it pleases God. Pink goes on to explain it this way: “Why should it be thought strange if some are qualified by nature to lead and rule, while others are only fitted to follow and serve?” I know, I can hear you saying it right now; “But that’s not fair!” Fairness ended in the Garden of Eden (that one is from Andy Stanley). But you should be thanking God for not being fair. Because we all deserve a punishment of eternal damnation for the sins that we commit against God.

Why does God get to do this you ask? Because he is Sovereign. God can do it because He is God! There is no comparison between God and anything else because, as it is said in Isaiah 40:17-18 “To whom then will you liken God?”

Published with permission by Brian Cain with Code-4 Ministries.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Sovereignty of God Defined

In this second chapter of A.W. Pink’s book “The Sovereignty of God”, Pink tries to lay out the meaning of those words. ”The sovereignty of God! What do we mean by this expression? We mean the supremacy of God, the kingship of God, the Godhood of God!” What this is saying is that sovereign is a word that is meant to describe the character of God, not his actions. That was the way that God was meant to be seen, but over the years we have watered down God and the power that he has. ”The God of the twentieth century is a helpless, effeminate being who commands the respect of no really thoughtful man .” Pink goes on to say “The God of many a present-day pulpit is an object of pity rather than of awe-inspiring reverence.” This truly is the way that some people look at God!!! Can you believe that? The Creator of the world is effeminate?

Just look at the pictures that we see of Jesus! This is a HUGE hobby horse of mine. I snicker when I see painting of Jesus riding SIDE-SADDLE on a donkey! Give me a break! Jesus, the blue eyed Jew with long flowing clean robes (like he didn’t live in a desert and was dirty). The Jesus that I follow is the one who walked in the desert. He’s the one that kicked over tables in the temple. He’s the one that’s coming back in a robe dipped in blood, with tattoos on his thigh (Revelation 19:13). I don’t know who you follow, but the Jesus that I follow IS NOT effeminate! That is why cops have trouble living their lives as Jesus did. They have skewed vision of who Jesus is. They think that he’s some hippie throwing up the peace sign and hittin’ the glass pipe! But that’s enough of that. I might make someone mad

So how did we get to where we are now if God is sovereign? ”To throw the blame, as many do, on the Devil, does not remove the difficulty (of comprehension of the state of affairs), for if Satan is defeating the purpose of God, then Satan is almighty and God is no longer the Supreme Being.” So where does that leave us? Why does God allow the things to happen on the earth that we see everyday? ”The answer to all of these questions is, Because God is Sovereign, and being Sovereign, he does as he pleases.” It’s just like when we were kids and you asked your parents “Why?” and they said “Because I said so!” If you’re a cop then this DOES NOT set well with you! But, God doesn’t care.

So why doesn’t God just have everyone running around exactly the same? Grace! ”Grace has been defined as the unmerited favor of God, and if unmerited, then no one can claim it is their inalienable right.” God shows favor on people that he deems worthy! It just so happens that that God “dispenses his favors as he pleases.” So if it seems like there is no rhyme or reason as to why God is blessing someone and not you; You’re right!

Published with permission by Brian Cain with Code-4 Ministries.

Across America: City #20

The Baltimore Police Department protects the 20th largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Baltimore Police Department and for Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld. For the next 19 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Sovereignty of God and the Present Day

The first chapter in A.W. Pink’s book “The Sovereignty of God” is called The Sovereignty of God an the Present Day. This chapter takes a hard look at the way we view the world in the present. It addresses the problem with viewing the world as “How does God fit in this world?” It starts with a troubling question, “Who is regulating the affairs on this earth today-God, or the devil?” Strangely enough, this is a question that Police Officers ask all the time.

It goes on to address the shrinking population of those who call themselves Christians. In a very stunning statement, as the book was originally written in 1928, it says “Worse still, He (the Christ of Scripture) is proclaimed and magnified by very few.” Even in the Roaring 20’s, God was being eroded by society. This chapter goes on to answer the question of who is running this earth. It’s convicting to read these words that were written by a man 57 years ago and see that it applied to this very day. ”It all depends on whether you’re walking by faith, or walking by sight.” That’a amazing! Pink is telling us that it depends on our point of view! It is the famous glass question; half full or half empty. For those that are walking by sight, Pink tells us very wisely “From every pulpit in the land it needs to be thundered forth that God still lives, that God still observes, and God still reigns!” This is a jagged pill to swallow for the Law Enforcement community. We like to think that we are in control. It’s blatantly obvious that we are not.

What we need is a change of perspective! ”Instead of beginning with man and his world and working back to God, we must begin with God and work back down to man – ‘In the beginning, God!’” If we start with man in this present world and try to connect everything with God, the pieces do not fit! But if we start with God and connect with man, we can see that God’s judgement is being poured out on man. That is a sobering thought. I’ve heard people ask “Why would God allow that to happen?” Who knows, it may be the lack of people standing in the gap (Ezekiel 22:30). As cops, we are called to stand in the gap to defend our city. How are we doing?

As far as man’s ability to judge God’s motives: “he is not competent to form a proper estimate of God’s character and ways, and it is because of this that God has given a revelation of his mind, and in that revelation he plainly declares, ‘My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the Earth, so are My ways higher than yours, and My thoughts than your thoughts.’ (Isa 55:8-9)” We are not called to judge God’s motives. Be careful of your intentions of doing so. It’s easy to fall in that trap as Police Officers. We forget that there is a judicial process that must take place in spiritual matters as well as criminal matters. For those judged guilty, there will be a punishment.

I look forward to diving into this book and seeing what it teaches me and how it applies to the Law Enforcement community.

Published with permission by Brian Cain with Code-4 Ministries.

The Sovereignty of God

Arthur Pink (1886-1952) was born in England and despite his Christian upbringing he walked away from the faith at a young age and embraced a cult that emphasized paranormal activity. Pink rose high in the organization but his parents continued to pray for him.

When he was 22 years old, Pink returned home from a meeting and was going to his bedroom when his father game him a scripture, "There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death" (Proverbs 14:12.

Arthur could not shake the conviction this scripture gave him and he spent three days in his room wrestling with God. When he came out, he was converted and embraced Jesus Christ as his Lord. His life changed dramatically from that moment and he studied the Bible with a fervent hunger.

He immigrated to the United States to study at Moody Bible Institute. After marrying in 1916 he went on to pastor churches in Australia and England before returning to the United States to pastor churches in Colorado, California, Kentucky, and South Carolina. Pink returned to England in 1934, turning his Christian service to writing books and pamphlets.

Sources say that Arthur Pink was literally unknown and not appreciated in his day. His personal Bible study convinced him that much of the modern day evangelism was defective and his writings were mostly disregarded by the church of his day. It wasn't until Pink's death in 1952 that his popularity grew. His works were republished by the Banner of Truth Trust and reached a much wider audience as a result, making him one of the most influential evangelical authors in the second half of the twentieth century. His writing sparked a revival of expository preaching and focused readers' hearts on biblical living. His works include numerous Bible studies and books such as "The Attibrutes of God," "The Doctrine of Justification," "The Patience of God,"and "The Total Depravity of Man."

One of Pink's books, "The Sovereignty of God" has been a tremendous inspiration to our ministry. We offered a copy to our good friend Brian with Code 4 Ministries and he is not only reading it, he is blogging about each chapter. He has given us permission to republish each post and in the coming weeks we will be doing that.

We hope you follow along with Brian's excellent summaries of each chapter and his application to Law Enforcement. If you would like to read the book, we have a few in our store now available.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Christianity & Sports

I am suspect about just about anything or anyone that claims Christ as their Savior. There are so many wolves walking around us we must be vigilant in what we associate with and identify with. I am especially suspect when it comes to athletes and their professions of faith. I have watched too many times an athlete act like a complete fool, absorbed in the world and the minute something goes their way, they acknowledge God.

Now I'm not just picking on athletes. I have many friends and associates that use God like their personal butler, calling on Him when they have a need and only acknowledging Him when everything in their life is going great. Thus is the life in America today. A country that claims to know God, alligns with God, with rampant abortion, pornography, crime and excesses. It is all so confusing and especially so to unbelievers.

So when I became aware of Florda Quarterback Tim Tebow four years ago and his outward profession of faith in Christ, I was suspect. I had seen it before only to be disappointed but I have followed him very closely during his college career and even saw him play in person once. While Tim has no doubt made mistakes and he ofcourse battles sin like the rest of us, considering the high profile stage he has been on, his outward display of faith in Christ should be applauded. In fact, it should be a model for us all. Tim Tebow gets the opportunity to display Christ to millions watching on television but we all have a part to play in that. Do you regularly talk about Christ to others? Do you display Him in your office and house? If someone didn't know you were a Christian, how long would it take them to figure it out?

I am intrigued by what others say about Tim. I have been extremely disappointed in professing Christians when they display disgust at Tim's display of Christianity. This is often because their team has been "beat" by Florida but never the less it is disheartening to hear so called Christians talk so negatively about a young man that has seemingly done nothing to warrant it, except to profess Christ and play football well. Professing Christians are not the only ones that have something negative to say about Tim and at some point you have to ask yourself is there more to this? I believe there is and in an article, USA Today has likely exposed the reason for much of the disgust for Tim Tebow.

Tom Krattenmaker authored an article titled "And I'd like to thank God Almighty." Mr. Krattenmaker's article was an overall look at the increase in athletes promoting the "Christian message" in the media while playing sports. On the surface the article is a seemingly harmless information piece discussing an interesting topic but it is much more. Krattenmaker asserts that the kind of religion that Tim Tebow promotes is intolerant and out of sync with the majority of other professing Christians.

"But Jesus' representatives in sports aren't just practicing faith. They are also leveraging sports' popularity to promote a message and doctrine that are out of sync with the diverse communities that support franchises."

What kind of Christianity does Tim Tebow promote? Tim Tebow works with his father's missionary association that does much of their work in the Philippines and the Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association stands for Christ and Christ alone.
This is the problem that Krattenmaker, so called Christians and so many others have in Tebow and anyone else that claims this essential truth.

John 14:6 "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me"

Krattenmaker cites a recent Pew Study that stated that 65% of American Christians believe that there are more than one way to have eternal life. Thus the majority of American Christians have a "more generous conception of salvation."

Krattenmaker may think he is on to something but there is a deep seeded problem with his logic. Those 65% of American Christians are likely not Christians at all. How is anyone saved by a Gospel they do not even know? This is not the Gospel.

The Gospel, as the Tebow Family raises high, is exclusive. There is no other way other than Jesus Christ. Jesus is not so much the problem when He is mentioned as "A Way" but change one word and expect everything around you to break lose.

The world (and USA Today) will gladly accept Jesus as "A Way" but as soon as He is "The Way", everything changes.

Luke 14:27 "Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me, cannot be my disciple."

John 15:18 "If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you."

Bob and Tim Tebow understand this. My son looks up to Tim Tebow and he notices his outward display of his faith in Christ. I want nothing more than for my son to believe and trust in Christ alone for salvation and then spend the rest of his life displaying that matter what anyone would say about him.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Across America: City #21

The El Paso Police Department protects the 21st largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the El Paso Police Department and for Chief Gregory Allen. For the next 20 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Across America: City #22

The Milwaukee Police Department protects the 22nd largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Milwaukee Police Department and for Chief Edward Flynn. For the next 21 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Armor of God Project Map

As you can see from this map, the Armor of God Project has sent and received ballistic vests from a large part of the United States and two other countries. God has used a lunch conversation in February and turned this crazy idea into an international project where hundreds of Law Enforcement Professionals are receiving not only a free bullet proof vest but the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Code 4 Ministries

Meet Officer Brian Cain (below video). I first met Brian over a year ago when he called me and said that he felt God was calling him into a law enforcement ministry in Georgia. I told him to go for it and in a few weeks, Brian had formed Code 4 Ministries.
The below video is just one of several online devotionals he is making for Law Enforcement. He also leads a small group fellowship in his hometown and is active in his home church.

I am proud of Brian and his ministry and honored at the very small contribution Ten-Four Ministries was able to make to help and encourage the development of this ministry to law enforcement.

This devotional discusses a topic that I responded to this week with a Philadelphia Officer that asked the following question for a fellow co-worker:

1) If God is Sovereign and knows all, then why should I wear a ballistic vest to protect me? God has already determined what will happen.

This really is the classic God's Sovereignty vs. Free Will dilemma that so many still debate and I doubt that my short answer here will answer every question out there.

The Bible speaks often of God's Sovereignty yet it calls on people to take action. Just as in Ezekial 22:30, as Brian points out, God was searching for a man capable of helping Israel but no one was able or willing to lead that nation to a repentance back to God, thus God "consumed them with the fire of my wrath" (verse 31) in 586 B.C.

To not take action to be safe, to wear a vest that is given to you for that purpose is a clear violation of an unwilingness to take action.

God did and does permit horrible things to happen such as racism, slavery and officer deaths but He does call on people to take action such as speaking up for the poor and needy (Proverbs 31:8-9).

For the same people that would say don't wear a vest, God is Sovereign, would they turn a blind eye to a child in the middle of the street about to be run over or a husband beating on his wife? God is indeed permitting that to happen but He has also placed us as law enforcement professionals there to take action. Just as He permitted the invention of Kevlar and saw to it you as an officer was given a vest.

Wear your vest, be safe and glorify God.