I ran across something very interesting this morning, while reading a favorite blog.
There's this Christian musician named Steve Camp. He's been a favorite of mine for years, but even more so since releasing what I consider to be his penultimate album, "Consider the Cost." Not too long after that came an album called "Mercy in the Wilderness," which is basically pure worship.
Anyway, Camp has a blog, called Camp On This. This morning, I was reading it and came across something he actually wrote Friday, July 15, called "The Christian's 'Bill of Rights.'" I'm pasting the numbered items that he wrote. They are quite good, and quite biblical.
The Christian's Bill of Rights
1. As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ we have only one right: and that is to give up all rights to ourselves (2 Cor. 5:14-16; Romans 14:7-9).
2. We have the right to deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow Him (Mt. 16:24-26).
3. We have the right to esteem others more highly than ourselves; and love our neighbor as ourselves (Mt. 22:39;
4. We have the right to fulfill the law of Christ in bearing one another's burdens of sin (Gal. 6:1-3).
5. We have the right to be wronged and to maintain a faithful testimony (1 Cor. 6:1-8).
6. We have the right to live in unreciprocated self-sacrificial love (Eph. 5:1-2).
7. We have the right to forgive others the smaller debt, as God in Christ has forgiven us the larger debt (Eph. 4:31-32; Matthew 18:12-35).
8. We have the right to suffer for the gospel and to take the blows for the One who took the blows for us (1 Peter 2:21-24)
9. We have the right to be "subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed, to malign no one, to be uncontentious, gentle, showing every consideration for all men" (Titus 3:1-2).
10. We have the right to not be political agitators trading the truth of His Word to play politics with men's souls; thinking that true spiritual change occurs through legislation rather than the transforming power of the gospel of grace. (1 Peter 4:10-16).
11. We have the right to turn the other cheek (Matthew 5:39).
12. We have the right to be stripped of all earthly things (Matthew 5:40-42).
13. We have the right to not repay evil for evil and to be at peace with all men as much as it depends on you (Romans 12:17-18).
14. We have the right to love our enemies, do good to them that hate us, bless those who curse us and pray for those that despitefully use us (Matthew 5:44-45).
15. We have the right to pursue holiness-not personal happiness (1 Peter 1:13-16).
16. We have the right not to be ashamed of the gospel (2 Tim. 1:6-18).
17. We have the right not to harbor revenge, anger, bitterness, clamoring, wrath, malice and slander (Ephesians 4:31).
18. We have the right not to quench or grieve the Holy Spirit. (Eph. 4:30; 1 Thess. 5:19).
19. We have the right to repent of and not cherish our sins (Psalm 66:18).
20. We have the right to guard the trust; and to contend for the once for all delivered to the saints faith (1 Timothy 6:20; Jude 1:3).
21. We have the right to train our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:1-3).
22. We have the right to reflect God's covenantal relationship with us by honoring our vows in the covenant of marriage with our spouse Mt. 19:6).
23. We have the right to worship Christ Jesus as God of very God; Creator; Redeemer; Sovereign Lord and Ruler of all (Col. 1:15-19; Hebrews 1:8; Phil. 2:5-11).
24. We have the right to present our bodies as living sacrifices, holy, acceptable pleasing unto God (Roms. 12:1-2).
25. We have the right to live in the expectancy and hope of the Lord's return by which we purify ourselves (Roms. 12:1-2).
26. We have the right to march daily on our knees in prayer; praying for our leaders in government; our church leaders; our fellow believers; our families; and the lost (1 Timothy 2:1-3; Ephesians 6:18-21).
27. We have the right to praise and glorify God according to how He has revealed Himself through the pages of His Word (Col. 3:16-17).
28. We have the right to the accountability of the local church; to obey our leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over our souls, as those who will give an account (Hebrews 13:17).
29. We have the right to go into all the world and make disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:18-20).
30. We have the right to have no rights apart from Christ Himself; "for whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it" (Matt. 16:25: John 15:5).
A Puritan Prayer for Those Who Have Surrendered Their Rights in this Life
"Accept His worthiness for my unworthiness, His sinlessness for my transgressions, His purity for my uncleanness, His sincerity for my guile, His truth for my deceits, His meekness for my pride, His constancy for my backslidings, His love for my enmity, His fullness for my emptiness, His faithfulness for my treachery, His obedience for my lawlessness, His glory for my shame, His devotedness for my waywardness, His holy life for my unchaste ways, His righteousness for my dead works, His death for my life!"
On a lighter note, here's a picture of Stephanie with the Rangers "Captain" from the baseball game with the Toronto Blue Jays on July 8.