IF we trusted God, and did what He said, we might stop some of the violence at houses of worship

All of us, at some point in our lives, ask the question "Why?" We read about tragedies everyday and sometimes the only response we can muster up is "Why?" Why did God let this happen (whatever "this" is).

In 35 years as a police officer, I constantly witnessed scenes of devastation: abused children, battered women, suicides - and the list goes on. And time after time, through their tears I heard people ask the question "Why?"

I won't pretend for a moment to have all the answers. However, having studied the scriptures for over 40 years, there are some "why" questions that can be easily answered.

Let me call your attention to Proverbs 27:12 - "A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." Think hard on that one - and the scales may fall from your eyes. It by no means explains everything; but it explains a lot.

It actually tells you that if you are prudent, and you take the time to "foresee danger," there's a chance that that particular danger will not harm you.

For example, if you "foresee danger" in the form of a car wreck, and put on your seatbelt ("take precautions")  - there's a good chance you'll survive.

Let's bring this truth to the issue of violence at houses of worship. There are many who argue there is no need for it, that we should simply "trust the Lord" and He will take care of us. But how, in light of all that is happening, can we make that argument?  

Here is my point: if you say you are trusting God in the matter of security, then why not believe what He says in His Word? If you trust Him, surely you can trust His word. And His word tells you to "foresee danger" and "take precautions.."

If you will awaken yourself to see the present danger we are in, you are then more likely to take the precautions that are necessary to protect your flock. If you don't do so, it is NOT because you are a person of faith - but a person of foolishness!

His word tells you to foresee danger. Are you doing that?

108 people have died a violent death on church and faith-based property this year. That's an all-time high (77 in 2015). This alarming statistic should enable you to "foresee danger" to the point that you will "take precautions."

Put simply, there are some bad things that would not come your way if you could see the possibility of them happening. You must "see" the possibility (perhaps you need a miracle; the restoration of your "sight"). Then, once you "see," you could then take the proper precautions.

While sitting in my yard the other night, I heard the sound of what appeared to be a car wreck. I jumped in my car and drove to where I thought it was. It was a terrible crash. One driver was pinned in his car, while the other had been ejected some 40 feet. Both cars were totaled. The engine of one of the cars was lying on the ground - 20 yards from the car.

An investigation would reveal that one of the drivers was talking on the phone as she drove (distracted). This accident was completely avoidable. Had she "foreseen the danger" of being on the phone while driving, perhaps she would have stayed off the phone - and avoided the wreck. So if someone asks about this accident, and followed with a "why," the answer would have been simple: she was distracted by talking on the phone.

Surely the tragedy in Sutherland Springs, Texas can help you see what can happen even in the smallest churches - in the smallest cities! Sutherland Springs shows us that NO ONE IS SAFE!

It is time that you awaken from your slumber. You are now without excuse. You claim you are trusting God - START ACTING LIKE IT. Foresee the danger and take the precautions. If you fail to do this, you may experience the second part of the verse at hand: "The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." 

A "Simpleton" is one who is foolish or gullible. He is the one who does NOT see the present danger, thus he avoids taking any precautions. And sometimes he pays dearly.

If the short cut to your car from the theater is through a dark alley, don't be surprised if you get mugged. 

In my 35-year career as a cop, all I did was roam from one crime scene to another that might not have happened had the victim "foreseen the danger" - and taken the necessary precautions. That is not to say that the victim was to blame. THE FAULT NEVER LIES WITH THE VICTIM! However, to stay victim-free, one must foresee danger at all times, and then take the necessary precautions. 

Foreseeing danger, and taking precautions, is how Jesus lived. John 7:1 tells us that He refused to go to Judea because the men of the city were seeking to kill Him. Wow - why didn't He just go anyway, - and trust His Father to take care of Him? That was not His style. He understood how a fallen world operated. When he saw danger, He avoided it. He saw that the men of Judea would try to kill Him, and He would not die UNTIL HE WAS READY (see John 10).

If Jesus foresaw danger, and took precautions to avoid it, why don't you consider doing likewise? It's nothing less than a case of WWJD ("What Would Jesus Do").

 

 

 

 

 

 

IF we trusted God, and did what He said, we might stop some of the violence at houses of worship

All of us, at some point in our lives, ask the question "Why?" We read about tragedies everyday and sometimes the only response we can muster up is "Why?" Why did God let this happen (whatever "this" is).

In 35 years as a police officer, I constantly witnessed scenes of devastation: abused children, battered women, suicides - and the list goes on. And time after time, through their tears I heard people ask the question "Why?"

I won't pretend for a moment to have all the answers. However, having studied the scriptures for over 40 years, there are some "why" questions that can be easily answered.

Let me call your attention to Proverbs 27:12 - "A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." Think hard on that one - and the scales may fall from your eyes. It by no means explains everything; but it explains a lot.

It actually tells you that if you are prudent, and you take the time to "foresee danger," there's a chance that that particular danger will not harm you.

For example, if you "foresee danger" in the form of a car wreck, and put on your seatbelt ("take precautions")  - there's a good chance you'll survive.

Let's bring this truth to the issue of violence at houses of worship. There are many who argue there is no need for it, that we should simply "trust the Lord" and He will take care of us. But how, in light of all that is happening, can we make that argument?  

Here is my point: if you say you are trusting God in the matter of security, then why not believe what He says in His Word? If you trust Him, surely you can trust His word. And His word tells you to "foresee danger" and "take precautions.."

If you will awaken yourself to see the present danger we are in, you are then more likely to take the precautions that are necessary to protect your flock. If you don't do so, it is NOT because you are a person of faith - but a person of foolishness!

His word tells you to foresee danger. Are you doing that?

108 people have died a violent death on church and faith-based property this year. That's an all-time high (77 in 2015). This alarming statistic should enable you to "foresee danger" to the point that you will "take precautions."

Put simply, there are some bad things that would not come your way if you could see the possibility of them happening. You must "see" the possibility (perhaps you need a miracle; the restoration of your "sight"). Then, once you "see," you could then take the proper precautions.

While sitting in my yard the other night, I heard the sound of what appeared to be a car wreck. I jumped in my car and drove to where I thought it was. It was a terrible crash. One driver was pinned in his car, while the other had been ejected some 40 feet. Both cars were totaled. The engine of one of the cars was lying on the ground - 20 yards from the car.

An investigation would reveal that one of the drivers was talking on the phone as she drove (distracted). This accident was completely avoidable. Had she "foreseen the danger" of being on the phone while driving, perhaps she would have stayed off the phone - and avoided the wreck. So if someone asks about this accident, and followed with a "why," the answer would have been simple: she was distracted by talking on the phone.

Surely the tragedy in Sutherland Springs, Texas can help you see what can happen even in the smallest churches - in the smallest cities! Sutherland Springs shows us that NO ONE IS SAFE!

It is time that you awaken from your slumber. You are now without excuse. You claim you are trusting God - START ACTING LIKE IT. Foresee the danger and take the precautions. If you fail to do this, you may experience the second part of the verse at hand: "The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." 

A "Simpleton" is one who is foolish or gullible. He is the one who does NOT see the present danger, thus he avoids taking any precautions. And sometimes he pays dearly.

If the short cut to your car from the theater is through a dark alley, don't be surprised if you get mugged. 

In my 35-year career as a cop, all I did was roam from one crime scene to another that might not have happened had the victim "foreseen the danger" - and taken the necessary precautions. That is not to say that the victim was to blame. THE FAULT NEVER LIES WITH THE VICTIM! However, to stay victim-free, one must foresee danger at all times, and then take the necessary precautions. 

Foreseeing danger, and taking precautions, is how Jesus lived. John 7:1 tells us that He refused to go to Judea because the men of the city were seeking to kill Him. Wow - why didn't He just go anyway, - and trust His Father to take care of Him? That was not His style. He understood how a fallen world operated. When he saw danger, He avoided it. He saw that the men of Judea would try to kill Him, and He would not die UNTIL HE WAS READY (see John 10).

If Jesus foresaw danger, and took precautions to avoid it, why don't you consider doing likewise? It's nothing less than a case of WWJD ("What Would Jesus Do").

 

 

 

 

 

 

IF we trusted God, and did what He said, we might stop some of the violence at houses of worship

All of us, at some point in our lives, ask the question "Why?" We read about tragedies everyday and sometimes the only response we can muster up is "Why?" Why did God let this happen (whatever "this" is).

In 35 years as a police officer, I constantly witnessed scenes of devastation: abused children, battered women, suicides - and the list goes on. And time after time, through their tears I heard people ask the question "Why?"

I won't pretend for a moment to have all the answers. However, having studied the scriptures for over 40 years, there are some "why" questions that can be easily answered.

Let me call your attention to Proverbs 27:12 - "A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." Think hard on that one - and the scales may fall from your eyes. It by no means explains everything; but it explains a lot.

It actually tells you that if you are prudent, and you take the time to "foresee danger," there's a chance that that particular danger will not harm you.

For example, if you "foresee danger" in the form of a car wreck, and put on your seatbelt ("take precautions")  - there's a good chance you'll survive.

Let's bring this truth to the issue of violence at houses of worship. There are many who argue there is no need for it, that we should simply "trust the Lord" and He will take care of us. But how, in light of all that is happening, can we make that argument?  

Here is my point: if you say you are trusting God in the matter of security, then why not believe what He says in His Word? If you trust Him, surely you can trust His word. And His word tells you to "foresee danger" and "take precautions.."

If you will awaken yourself to see the present danger we are in, you are then more likely to take the precautions that are necessary to protect your flock. If you don't do so, it is NOT because you are a person of faith - but a person of foolishness!

His word tells you to foresee danger. Are you doing that?

108 people have died a violent death on church and faith-based property this year. That's an all-time high (77 in 2015). This alarming statistic should enable you to "foresee danger" to the point that you will "take precautions."

Put simply, there are some bad things that would not come your way if you could see the possibility of them happening. You must "see" the possibility (perhaps you need a miracle; the restoration of your "sight"). Then, once you "see," you could then take the proper precautions.

While sitting in my yard the other night, I heard the sound of what appeared to be a car wreck. I jumped in my car and drove to where I thought it was. It was a terrible crash. One driver was pinned in his car, while the other had been ejected some 40 feet. Both cars were totaled. The engine of one of the cars was lying on the ground - 20 yards from the car.

An investigation would reveal that one of the drivers was talking on the phone as she drove (distracted). This accident was completely avoidable. Had she "foreseen the danger" of being on the phone while driving, perhaps she would have stayed off the phone - and avoided the wreck. So if someone asks about this accident, and followed with a "why," the answer would have been simple: she was distracted by talking on the phone.

Surely the tragedy in Sutherland Springs, Texas can help you see what can happen even in the smallest churches - in the smallest cities! Sutherland Springs shows us that NO ONE IS SAFE!

It is time that you awaken from your slumber. You are now without excuse. You claim you are trusting God - START ACTING LIKE IT. Foresee the danger and take the precautions. If you fail to do this, you may experience the second part of the verse at hand: "The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences." 

A "Simpleton" is one who is foolish or gullible. He is the one who does NOT see the present danger, thus he avoids taking any precautions. And sometimes he pays dearly.

If the short cut to your car from the theater is through a dark alley, don't be surprised if you get mugged. 

In my 35-year career as a cop, all I did was roam from one crime scene to another that might not have happened had the victim "foreseen the danger" - and taken the necessary precautions. That is not to say that the victim was to blame. THE FAULT NEVER LIES WITH THE VICTIM! However, to stay victim-free, one must foresee danger at all times, and then take the necessary precautions. 

Foreseeing danger, and taking precautions, is how Jesus lived. John 7:1 tells us that He refused to go to Judea because the men of the city were seeking to kill Him. Wow - why didn't He just go anyway, - and trust His Father to take care of Him? That was not His style. He understood how a fallen world operated. When he saw danger, He avoided it. He saw that the men of Judea would try to kill Him, and He would not die UNTIL HE WAS READY (see John 10).

If Jesus foresaw danger, and took precautions to avoid it, why don't you consider doing likewise? It's nothing less than a case of WWJD ("What Would Jesus Do").

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Every Church Needs To Do - Right Now!

So I get a call from a police officer who works in a large city today. An email had been sent out to all the troops offering part time work at different churches across the city. It seems that the tragedy in Sutherland Springs has really awakened many churches, and for that we are grateful. At the same, however, our hearts ache for our brothers and sisters in Sutherland. 

But permit me to share a word of caution, especially with those of you in the ministry.

I certainly believe we should exert our greatest effort in protecting the flock. Do whatever you can, within your means, to ensure the safety of the lambs under your care. We have advocated that for over eight years.

But, do not, I repeat, DO NOT, allow the present threat of violence hinder you in any way from your calling as a church to minister to the dying world around you. 

The mass-shootings, the massacres, the attacks, they are not going to stop. Any one with any depth of knowledge about these things knows that violence on faith-based property and churches is not going to stop.

But such threats must not in any shape or form deter you from your calling to preach the gospel, make disciples, and build up the the kingdom.

We must not cower to the criminal element that seeks to destroy our way of life - or our gathering to worship. We must move full-steam ahead with the proclamation of the gospel and the making of disciples. We must not fall prey to any of these tactics of the enemy to thwart the spreading of the gospel and the building up of the church.

Fear, by itself, is not a bad thing. It is actually a gift from God that can warn us of impending danger. It tells us, for example, to not jump out of an airplane at 25,000 feet with no parachute. 

And fear also tells us to set measures in place to protect the flock when we gather for worship. This can be a good thing. But, we must never allow fear to stop us from our mission.

Ideally, what all churches should do is proceed with their missions - just do so with caution. This is the practice we have always called for. If you feed the hungry, have some form of security on scene. And any other ministry you initiate, simply add some means of security to it to help decrease the chances of violence.

This Sunday at your church there are two things you need to do: recite the Apostle's Creed, and then have someone sing Tom Petty's song I Won't Back Down. Here, permit me to provide the lyrics for you...

THE APOSTLE'S CREED

I believe in Jesus Christ, God's only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen

TOM PETTY "I WON'T BACK DOWN."

Well, I won't back down
No, I won't back down
You can stand me up at the gates of hell
But I won't back down

No, I'll stand my ground
Won't be turned around
And I'll keep this world from draggin' me down
Gonna stand my ground
And I won't back down

I won't back down
Hey baby, there ain't no easy way out
I won't back down
Hey I will stand my ground
And I won't back down

Well I know what's right
I got just one life
In a world that keeps on pushin' me around
But I stand my ground
And I won't back down

 

Paul the Apostle - and Armed Security

From time to time I am asked, “Jimmy, where is your faith? Why can’t you just trust God to protect you – and teach the churches to do likewise?”

One lady even told me that if a shooter enters the sanctuary, we should just, “…rebuke him in the name of Jesus, and hold him down until the police arrive” (I didn’t make this up – someone actually told us this). 

But not all exorcisms are successful: The scripture tells us of a time when even the disciples of Jesus were unable to cast out a demon (Matthew 17).

The truth is, we must not allow our religion to “dumb us down.”

I am certainly not saying that having armed security will always stop a killer, but it is helpful to have a good man with a gun if a bad man with a gun shows up.

Paul the Apostle understood this. Paul didn’t always utilize the “faith-only” approach when it came to his personal protection. Sometimes, he took advantage of... “Armed security.”

Read it for yourself….

In Acts 23 a group of about 40 men vowed to not eat until they had killed Paul. They were so enraged at his teaching about Jesus that they determined to kill him. They convinced their religious leaders to summon Paul to their court under the pretense of asking him more questions.

But their aim was to kill him. Paul’s nephew learned about the plot and rushed off to tell him. Paul’s response is worth noting: he did NOT tell his nephew, “Have no fear my son, the Lord will protect me.” Instead, Paul used common sense. He summoned a nearby police officer and told him to escort his nephew to the commander.

The nephew met with the commander and exposed the plot. The response is, to say the least, very interesting. Read it for yourself: 

“Then the commander called two of his officers and ordered, 'Get 200 soldiers ready to leave for Caesarea at nine o’clock tonight. Also take 200 spearmen and 70 mounted troops. Provide horses for Paul to ride, and get him safely to Governor Felix.'”

Think about that for a moment. 470 ARMED GUARDS WERE ASSIGNED TO PAUL! These men had...SWORDS...SPEARS...

The religious mentality often tells us, “We should just trust the Lord for protection.” But the SPIRITUAL mind is different. It realizes that “faith without works is…DEAD.” Paul could have told his nephew, “Don’t panic. The Lord will get us to Rome. He promised us!”

Rome was Paul’s destination. God had told him he would testify before the authorities in Rome. And here we see God using “Armed Security” to fulfill His purpose for Paul. Paul will eventually get to Rome - and the Gospel will spread throughout the Roman Empire - and with the assistance of Armed Security!

God could have protected Paul with Angels – or a dozen other ways – but He chose to use a large group of ARMED Roman Centurions to provide cover for His Servant.

Antonio Milow is a Denver, Colorado Police Officer. A couple of years back, on a Sunday morning - after working the midnight shift - he came home and asked his son what he would like to do today.

“Take me to church dad."

Antonio got dressed, secured his gun on his person, and off to church he went…

When the service ended, the minister told his small congregation (about 40) that he felt led to pray for some of them. He summoned Antonio to the altar. “Antonio," the minister said, "God told me you’re going to do something you’ve never had to do before. And you’ll be brave and you’ll see it through – and you’ll be ok.”

A few minutes later, a man crashes his car in the church parking lot. Then, to everyone’s astonishment, he exits his car and starts shooting, killing Antonio’s aunt.

Antonio rushes outside and the gunfight is on. The battle rages; Antonio shoots the man several times, but he doesn’t go down. Antonio rushes back inside and warns the congregation to stay put. Meanwhile, the gunman enters the church and Antonio engages him again. 

Antonio shoots the killer just inside the door, ending the killer’s life.

Antonio saved several lives that day. 

Indeed, sometimes God uses “Armed” security…

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IS YOUR CHURCH PREPARED FOR VIOLENCE...???

Here are some things you need to know about church security - things you must start doing THIS COMING SUNDAY!

1- Do you have cameras at your church? If you do, you MUST have someone assigned to monitoring them. They do you NO GOOD if no one mans them. You wasted your money if they are not monitored. They will do nothing but record a crime - they will not stop a killer! The killers at Columbine High School posed for the cameras.

2- You MUST have someone in the parking lot. YOU MUST! If you do not, you have failed to protect your first line of defense. If you allow them into the sanctuary, it will be sheer hell and chaos. The sounds of gunfire in the sanctuary will forever haunt the worshipers. Many will never return.

 

It may be too cold (or hot) to be outside in the parking lot. If you feel that way, you probably should not be on the safety team. Soldiers may complain about heat or cold; but they choose to disregard it and man their station. You must think likewise. THESE KILLERS ARE COMING VIA THE PARKING LOT.

3- You must be prepared to engage a would-be murderer IN THE PARKING LOT. In Texas you are allowed to now be armed and serve on the church safety team (Texas Senate Bill 2065).

Take note of suspicious activity while in the lot. Watch for any vehicle that pulls hastily into the lot and occupies two spaces or parks awkwardly. We know of attacks at church where the killer did indeed park awkwardly (this is called a DLR - "don't look right").

4- And you must TRAIN. If your team is not training, and does not intend to do so, you should probably disband and turn the reins over to someone who knows what needs to be done.

Yes, there is an element (a strong one) of spiritual warfare that comes into play. The scripture makes it clear that our archenemy is a "murderer" (John 8:44). And he has declared war on the saints.

On June 22, 1980, a man entered a sanctuary in east Texas during its morning worship services. He was armed with 4 weapons, 400 rounds of ammo, and wore an army helmet and vest. Just before he began to fire upon the more than 350 worshipers, he shouted, "This is War!"