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A Biblical Perspective

“A Biblical Perspective” provides insight into all sorts of modern topics that present themselves to the modern Christian. On this page Lanny shares relative topics from a biblical perspective regarding the church, rightly dividing the Word of God, Christianity, and daily living. His educational background provides the foundation for what he shares on this page. With a Doctorate in Ministry, along with a PhD in Biblical Studies he possesses the credentials necessary to share on a multitude of biblical topics. His background as an educator in the public school system, along with his volunteer service in the single’s ministry provide personal insight into many of the issues people are struggling with in today’s society. His experience as a lay-pastor, along with his paid employment as an associate pastor in both large and small churches allows him access to both the functional and dysfunctional aspects of the modern church.  Hopefully, this page will provide food for thought as you deal with the issues you face throughout your personal journey.

 

 

The Hired Hand

"I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep."   

                                           John 10:11-13 NIV

 

I’ve had conversations with a multitude of individuals who were offended and completely turned off by certain components of the church or they had a bad experience with someone in the church that happened years earlier. Just recently I heard a message by Andy Stanley regarding this troubling reality found within much of the modern church. In his message he shared a scripture which brought extreme, clarity to this issue for me. It is heart wrenching to realize that too many church bodies have inflicted great harm on way too many individuals who sought inspiration, encouragement and support from a local fellowship. 

 

Have you ever experienced anything like this? Maybe you know somebody that feels this way.

 

Want to know more? Click on the pdf below to download Lanny's latest article, The Hired Hand!  

The Hired Hand! A Biblical Perspective
Sometimes people experience something in a church that turns them against ever darkening the threshold of a sanctuary ever again.
TheHiredHand.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [456.2 KB]

The Mystery of Zion Series - Israel and the Last Days

There is a cloud of mystery surrounding God’s chosen people and their Promised Land as it relates to how they fit into God’s bigger plan to bring salvation to the world by serving as the genetic conduit for the Messiah to be born. The perspectives from the early Church Fathers and even Constantine perpetuated the misconception that God is finished with the Jews and the nation of Israel.

 

After the destruction of Jerusalem in ad 70—when the Jewish people were literally scattered to the four corners of the globe for 2,000 years—it appeared that the early Church Fathers were right. However, with Israel’s miraculous rebirth as a nation in 1948, the prophecies regarding Israel’s role in God’s overall plan were miraculously resurrected. A nation that had been a long-forgotten part of Mid-eastern history, a civilization that had long since been forgotten, and even a language that appeared to have been lost to antiquity, were all resuscitated and brought back to life. The dry bones of a nation were given new life. As Ken Garrison notes in his book Hebraic Roots, “Contrary to the assumptions of the early Church fathers, rejection or divorce of His people was never an option considered by God (Jeremiah 33:24–26).”

 

Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your seed from the east, and gather you from the west. I will say to the north, “Give them up!” and to the south, “Do not keep them back!” Bring My sons from far, and My daughters from the ends of the earth (Isaiah 43:5–6 nkjv).

 

Click on a pdf below to access each lesson from this series.

 

You can also click on the link below to go to Amazon.com to order your copy of The Mystery of Zion.

 


 

Mystery of Zion Series - Part One
A Plan, A People and A Purpose
MysteryOfZionChapter1.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [610.4 KB]
Mystery of Zion Series - Part Two
The Mystery of Covenant
The Mystery of Covenant.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [621.3 KB]
Mystery of Zion Series - Part Three
The Mystery of the Kingdom
TheMysteryoftheKingdom.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [669.2 KB]
Mystery of Zion Series - Part Four
Israel's Final Days - A Timeline
Israel's Final Days A Timeline.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [710.2 KB]
Mystery of Zion Series - Part Five
An Everlasting Covenant
An Everlasting Covenant.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [628.5 KB]
Mystery of Zion Series - Part Six
The Mystery Unveiled
The Mystery Unveiled.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [614.9 KB]
Israel's Timeline Chart
The timeline of Israel provides information from the Birth of a Nation, all the way through the Rapture, the Tribulation and the Eternal State of God's chosen.
IsraelTimeline2017SubmissionTemplate.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [571.8 KB]

The Jezebel Series - 2019

 

“The Influence of Jezebel!”

 

But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.  Revelation 2:20 NASB

 

There usually aren’t too many Sunday morning messages in the church focusing on Jezebel. Her story is contained in the Old Testament books of I & II Kings. It’s not a favorable tale, neither for Jezebel nor her husband King Ahab, who was the king of Northern Israel. Jezebel is also mentioned in the Book of Revelation chapter 2 where Jesus shares an extremely strong message to the church. Once again, this reference to Jezebel is not favorable. There is a haunting lesson to be learned from the story of Jezebel and King Ahab. It’s a message which relates to all of us in this modern day. 

 

Check out this short study on Jezebel by clicking on any of the links below:

Part One - The Influence of Jezebel on Individuals, July 2019
TheInfluenceofJezebelJuly2019.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [659.3 KB]
Part Two - The Influence of Jezebel on the Church, August 2019
TheInfluenceofJezebelOnChurchJuly2019.pd[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [828.7 KB]

Is Jesus the Only Way?

In this hypersensitive, politically correct world, it has become extremely common to hear people say there are a multitude of ways to find god and enter into heaven. It’s acceptable to make god into what you want him to be, or need him to be for your own personal purpose or definition. It’s pretty normal to put god in a box to fit your own perceptions of who or what he is. This of course is a contrived, secular perspective of god that originated through a limited human understanding of life.

 

Many people believe that it doesn’t matter what your religious or spiritual beliefs are, as long as you are sincere, and you earnestly seek your own form of spirituality, you’ll go to heaven. However, if we believe what the Bible says, these other paths are nothing more than an individually contrived, self-serving view of god. This feel-good message is extremely palatable but flagrantly flawed. It’s a devious concoction with deadly consequences.

 

Click on the file below to download the complete study of "Is Jesus the Only Way?"

Is Jesus the Only Way?
The title of this study is a stumbling block for a lot of people, including many folks who claim to be Christians. Within this age of political correctness there are many who believe there have to be multiple ways to get to heaven. Find out for yourself if Jesus is the Only Way to Heaven!
IsJesusTheOnlyWayFeb2019.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [822.6 KB]

The Bread of Life

2018 was the most challenging year of my life. It started off with the decline of my dad’s health, culminating with his passing from this life on February 9th at the age of 84. Ironically, the day before his death he asked me the date. It was almost as if he knew he’d be leaving this world the next day. Early the next morning his soul transcended the bonds of this earthly realm and entered into his eternal rest with his Lord Jesus! The 9th of February was the same day his father-in-law (who was more of a father to him than his own dad) passed away 48 years earlier. In fact, my father and grandfather passed away at nearly the same hour of the day. Well, a few weeks later my wife filed for divorce citing irreconcilable differences as the reason. Several weeks after that my church placed me on a four month paid sabbatical. At the end of the sabbatical my position at the church was terminated. In less than a year, I had lost my father, my wife, my job at the church, my church family and my ministry as a pastor.

In retrospect, as I reflect on the nearly overwhelming loss experienced throughout the course of ten months, I realize this was a season of sifting for my life. It was as if I had been whipped to pieces on the thrashing floor, then tossed in the air, allowing the wind to blow away the chaff. The chaff included many of the things in this world I held close to my heart. Chaff that needed to be stripped away for some unknown reason. I’ve considered whether some of those things could have been a distraction of some sorts; causing me to lose focus on the truth of what is really important in this life. Maybe a few of those distractions had become a sort of an idol, causing me to turn my eyes and attention away from the "One" I needed most in life.

With my world turned completely upside down, as Christmas approached, I realized something - "The 'One' I chose to follow decades earlier; He is the only One who understood exactly what I had endured and the excruciating pain I had suffered." In fact, He too had been beaten and broken on the world’s thrashing floor for the salvation of humanity. Jesus is the Bread of Life. He was born in a small town called Bethlehem. In the ancient Hebrew the literal meaning of Bethlehem is “house of bread.”   Jesus is the “Bread of Life” and it was on the first day of “Unleavened Bread” when the “Passover Lamb” had to be sacrificed over 2,000 years ago. On the thrashing floor of this earth Jesus was prepared for a higher purpose, a divine calling. The punishment that brought “peace to earth” was placed upon Him as spoken about in Isaiah 53.

During the darkest days of my life, I began to see the significance of Jesus being called the “Bread of Life.” I started to realize what He suffered for the peace of humanity, was analogous to the process of wheat being prepared to feed the hungry. Like grain being pulverized by a millstone, He was crushed for my iniquity. By His wounds, by the shedding of His blood, I am healed. Literally, He was pierced for my transgressions and as the “Bread of God” that came down out of heaven, He provides “Life” to the world! The Bread of Life spoke to me this past year. He reminded me that I could not live by bread alone, but by every “Word” that proceeds out of His mouth.

After pondering these things in my heart, I sat down at the computer in early December and in a very short time, this Christmas poem sprang forth. So, as you read this piece, I pray you would reflect on the reality of what was required for Jesus to become the “Bread of Life!” Feel free to share with any of your friends. God bless you.                                                              In His Service, Lanny

Over the past year I’ve had the privilege of performing quite a few memorial services for family and friends. Not too long ago, I came across this quote from Charles Spurgeon a well-known preacher of the 19th century. I believe that his words help bring a sense of comfort to the reality of losing a loved one. Nothing can ever prepare you for the loss of someone you love. But there is a peace that comes when we acknowledge God's divine sovereignty and grace.  

 

When you stand over the grave of one you love, you are apt, in the loss, to forget he was a loan from God. When a dear one is taken away, the right way to look at it is that a precious loan has been called in by its Owner. We ought to be very grateful to have been allowed to borrow the comfort so long. We ought not to repine when the Owner takes back what He so kindly lent. The husband to whom you have been married these 10 years, or the child that has nestled in your bosom two years, or the friend that communed with you half a lifetime, or the brother who was such a comfort all his days–when these are gone, do not look at the going, only, but thank God that you ever had them. Be honest enough to acknowledge the good as well as to lament the evil. Bless a taking as well as a giving God, for He takes only but what He gave. ~ Charles Spurgeon

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.     ~ Psalm 34:18 NIV

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© Lanny Cook