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February 20, 2018
by Steve Sanchez
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Beating the Atheist

“WHEN I SEE GOD, I WILL TELL HIM THAT HE’S A NUT JOB!” said Rich the Atheist during a conversation I had with him on a college campus.

Why would Rich utter such blasphemous words? Because he got so frustrated with the way I argued my points using what’s called “presuppositional apologetics.” Don’t be intimidated by that phrase, it simply means that I defend the Christian faith (apologetics) by presupposing that God exists and that the Bible is valid and true having the ability to change lives.

When talking with skeptics, Christians do not need to know about every scientific theory or secular doctrine that comes down the pike; they do not have to be well-versed in Quantum Physics, evolutionary biology or abiogenesis hypotheses. That’s the unbeliever’s game. All a believer needs to know is the Word of God.

David Wright from “Answers in Genesis” clarifies further: “When explaining their beliefs, Christians often feel they must first prove the Bible or prove the existence of God. This approach reveals that they do not yet understand the Bible’s approach, known as presuppositional apologetics.

“Presuppositions are simply beliefs that everyone has that affect how they think, view the world, interpret evidence, and read the Bible. Apologetics is a reasoned defense of beliefs. Presuppositional apologetics is a reasoned defense of Christian beliefs based on recognizing our presuppositions.

“For instance, my presupposition is that God exists and He has given us His Word, (the Bible), that is absolute truth. So, I use the Bible as the basis for how to think, interpret evidence, explain the world around me, and read the Bible. An atheist’s presupposition will most likely be that there is no God and that truth is relative. An atheist believes that man decides truth, and so he thinks, interprets evidence, and views the world and Bible accordingly.”

Said another way, atheists presuppose there is no God. The Bible presupposes that they do.  Continue Reading

February 2, 2018
by Steve Sanchez
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“PLEASE STEP AWAY, SIR!”

“DPS TROOPERS DIRECT REV. STEVE SANCHEZ OF JOHNSON CITY to step away from abortion rights demonstrators during the Texas Rally for Life at the Capitol on Saturday January 27, 2018.” That was the caption of this photo taken by Jay Janner of the Austin American-Statesmen.

You may be wondering what I did. Just exercising my First Amendment Right to Free Speech.

It was the end of the march and the crowd of 5,000 pro-lifers had come to the Capitol to hear Governor Greg Abbott and other anti-abortion advocates speak on behalf of the pre-born. Instead, I wanted to engage the fifty or so people who had a different opinion regarding the “Life” issue, specifically, the ten “handmaids” who stood speechless in their white bonnets and deep-red robes at the entrance of the Capitol gates. The handmaids are a class of women from Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel, The Handmaid’s Tale, who are kept for reproductive purposes by the ruling class. They were the only silent protesters.

I wasn’t there to argue, but to bring a very different message, one that had nothing to do with abortion. I was shouted down by a young lady with a bullhorn and an angry attitude. I couldn’t get a word in edge-wise because of her cursing at me. Still, I persisted. I stood in-between two troopers, a small gap in the wall of deputies that surrounded the loud obscenity-shouting “Choicers,” apparently, for their protection.  Continue Reading

January 22, 2018
by Steve Sanchez
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Rally for Life!

I USED TO BE PRO-CHOICE, but not anymore. My life changed back in 1990 when I gave my life to Jesus Christ, and with that life change came a change of heart and a change of mind. I now value life: black lives, white lives, all colors, in fact. Men, women and alt-genders. Adults, kids, babies and the pre-born. Especially, the pre-born.

That’s why I will participate in the “Texas Rally for Life” like I did last year when I marched with about 5,000 others to the Capital on behalf of women and men—those in-the-womb Americans of all colors. As a Christian, as a pastor, as an American citizen, as a fellow human being, I wanted to show my support to our State Legislature for all the pro-life bills they are passing. Like these:

  • The passage of 10 pro-life bills including Senate Bill 8 to shut down Planned Parenthood’s trafficking of baby body parts,
  • The continued funding for the Alternatives to Abortion program, and
  • The continued defunding of Planned Parenthood. (32 clinics shut down in 2017.)

Numerous young people were there with this rallying cry: “My generation will end abortion.” The demonstration was peaceful. No vulgar language. No obscene signs or images. No trash on the ground afterwards.

Columnist Rolley Haggard wrote,

“Pro-life activism is not a mission of the Church; it is the mission of the church because the mission of the church is loving people. If we are to be the Body of Christ we must care about “the least of these” as our Master did. That, or quit calling ourselves the church.”

The Bible says, “Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, ‘Behold, we did not know this,’ does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?

This is not an issue of women’s rights, this is a matter of who has the right to determine if one lives or not.

Richard Hays says:

“It is inappropriate to set up the issue as a conflict of “rights”: the rights of the woman versus the rights of the unborn child. In Scripture, there is no “right to life.” Life is a gift from God, a sign of grace. No one has a …claim on it. Nor, on the other hand, do any of us—male or female—have a “right” to control our own bodies autonomously. . .. We are always accountable to God for our decisions and actions.”

Today is Sanctity of Human Life Day, the day we remember that infamous decision 45 years ago when the Supreme Court made abortion legal. Since that time, close to 60 million babies have been aborted in our nation.

The human lives killed by abortion exceed the number of people living in California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, and Utah combined. The total lives lost in all of America’s wars is less than 1.5 million people, yet this is close to how many babies are killed each year!

Will you take a stand?

Aren’t you glad that your parents were pro-life?

*Join us at the “Texas Rally for Life” in Austin on Saturday, January 27th. Meet at 18th and N. Congress at 1:00pm and then we’ll march to the Capital. Or, you can carpool from the Highland Lakes Pregnancy Resource Center at 10:45AM, located at 1016 Broadway in Marble Falls.

January 19, 2018
by Steve Sanchez
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Pre-born Vs. Newborn Differences

 

Scott Klusendorf says that there are only four differences between a pre-born and newborn. He uses the acronym S.L.E.D.

newborn

Size: Does how big you are determine who you are?

Level of development: Are 20-year-olds more human than 14-year-olds, since they are smarter and stronger?

Environment: Does being inside a house make you more or less of a person than being outside? Does being located in his mother’s body rather than outside make a child less human?

Degree of dependency: Does dependence upon another determine who you are? Is someone with Alzheimer’s or on kidney dialysis less of a person?

The question is not how old or big or smart or inconvenient the unborn are, but who they are. The answer is simple: they are human beings. (“Why Pro life?” Randy Alcorn, Pg. 31)

January 7, 2018
by Steve Sanchez
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2 Simple Resolutions

It’s tradition in America at the start of a New Year to make resolutions that will somehow better our lives or the lives of others in general. And why not? We all want to improve, we all need to improve. As the old cliché goes, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Heck even the great sage Taylor Swift said, “This is a new year. A new beginning. And things will change.” Wow! Profound!

An online polling firm found that only 32% of people did not plan on making New Year’s resolutions. Of those who will, here are the top five: Eat better. Exercise more. Spend less money. Get more sleep. Read more books.

Sadly, February 4 is the day most fall off the wagon. Data from one online retailer reported that customers’ alcohol consumption picked up by about 40% in the first two weeks of February—while juice-cleanse sales dropped by 25%. Also, more ice cream and pizza are eaten in early February than during the first two weeks of January.

If only we could be more like Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), considered America’s greatest theologian. At age 19, he didn’t just make New Year’s resolutions, he made 70 LIFETIME resolutions. He prefaced them with these solemn words: “Aware that I am unable to do anything without God’s help, I do pray that, by his grace, he will enable me to keep these Resolutions, so far as they are in line with his will, and that they will honor Christ.” Here are three of them:

#37: Resolved: To inquire every night, as I am going to bed, where I may have been negligent, what sin I have committed, and how I have denied myself. I will also do this at the end of every week, month, and year.

#38: Resolved: Never to speak anything that is ridiculous, trivial, or otherwise inappropriate on the Lord’s Day or Sabbath evening.

#45: Resolved: Never to allow any pleasure or grief, joy or sorrow, nor any affection at all, nor any degree of affection, nor any circumstance, but what advances the gospel.

I don’t think you’d invite ole Jonathan out for a beer after seeing “Return of the Jedi.” After church.

It’s also traditional for the pastor to give his congregation resolutions that he would like them to keep in the new year. Here are mine:

  1. Dedicate your life fully to Jesus Christ
  2. Read your bible daily
  3. Commit to our church and become a member
  4. Come to service 10 minutes early
  5. Serve somewhere, especially in our children’s church
  6. Give sacrificially
  7. Share your faith regularly.

Now, those are man-made resolutions. But how about if you made just two simple God-resolutions for 2018? A couple that Jesus would want us to keep? Are you ready? Okay. Here they are:

 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: …Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Simple, huh? I’ll check back with you in 2019 to see how well you did.