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Monday, June 5, 2006

"This Corrupt Generation"

"With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, 'Save yourselves from this corrupt generation'" (Acts 2:40).

I have been developing this web ministry since 1996 and one of my joys is sharing photographs I have taken. These photos are available not only as a part of the daily message but also as a gallery for those interested and are often found through search engines. Many sites link to various individual photos and that's fine with me. I certainly hope the photo is a blessing and also expect that some may visit the main site as well and hopefully read the message.

But I get infuriated when malicious sites use these photos for wicked purposes. I found one on myspace.com, a rather notorious pornographic website that had one of my favorite ocean photos used as a background to a vile rap song laced with obscenities. When I saw this I had godly indignation and banned the myspace.com website from access to mine. (Such are the ongoing challenges of internet ministry.) It's also a reminder of the wicked and corrupt generation we live in.

Peter's sermon on the day of Pentecost surely set the standard for apostolic preaching.  His Spirit empowered message focused on Jesus Christ. He warned and pleaded with His listeners, and the results were a remarkable surge of growth in the new church and this set the early pattern for life as a community of believers (2:41-47). 

Peter's entire message contained more than the selections recorded in Acts 2, for the careful historian Luke states, "With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, 'Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.'" 

Peter's appeal was that of warning and pleading and this final phrase contains his challenge, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation."

These words sound so harsh and unloving to many today.  So tempting to the preacher, particularly in America, is to lovingly explain how Jesus can make your life better.

But we still live in a "corrupt generation". This sermon would preach in any generation but it sure seems that, with the intensity of the corruption escalating year by year, it's especially fitting today.  I just read that thirty years ago the prison population nationwide was 239,000 and today the number is 2.3 million!

Today let me, using the very same words of the apostle Peter, warn and plead with you, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation."   We do so by repenting of our sins and placing our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Peter said many years later, "not living the rest of our earthly lives for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God" (1 Peter 4:2).

Be encouraged today,

Stephen C. Weber

Brooksyne's prayer: Jesus, I consider the words of Paul in Romans 14:7 where he reminds us that everyone's life and eventual death has a relation to others as well as themselves.  The choices I make and the actions that come from those choices either better my family name or inflict disaster on society.  I choose to live my life according to Your will and enjoy the present and eternal blessings that come from this decision.  I, with absolute intention, refuse to give Satan a foothold in my life thereby bringing evil human desires that eventually destroy my faith in You. I want to carefully guard the basic spiritual principles prayerfully instilled in me through Your Holy Word.  I choose to be faithful to Your calling in my life and live for the will of God today and for all of eternity.  Amen.

Here's the article on the increase in prison population. This is a very powerful and pertinent article on an aspect of corruption we are currently dealing with.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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