Friday, March 31, 2023


 Details matter. They always have, and they always will. There’s a reason every contract you enter into has a dozen pages of fine print they’re hoping you don’t have the time to read. By the time you figure you should have, it’s already too late, and you’re selling a kidney to get collections off your back, all for something they told you would be free. Technically, it was free, but only for the first thirty days. After that, the monthlies kick in, and you’re stuck paying fifty bucks a month for a beeper you never use for the next thirty-six months. As your momma tried to teach you way back when nothing is free but the love of Jesus, and other than salvation, if it sounds too good to be true, it likely is.

Have you ever gone through a Bible passage and then days later thought back on it and felt you missed something? It happens to me often. It’s just how my mind processes, and for the last couple of days, I’ve been returning to a passage we discussed in 2 Thessalonians, feeling there was something crucial that I missed or overlooked.

Sure enough, after rereading it for the umpteenth time, I realized what I’d missed. In his letter to the church of Thessalonica, Paul refers to three classifications of people who will incur the wrath of God: first will be those who trouble the people of God, second those who do not know God, and third, those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:3-10)

It would be an easy thing to clump those who do not know God in with those who do not obey the gospel of Christ, but that would be sloppy work, and there’s enough of that in the church today.

Why is this distinction important? Because churches today are full to overflowing with individuals who know the gospel but do not obey it. The tragedy is that they’ve been reassured that obedience to the gospel of Christ is optional, a take-it-or-leave-it sort of proposition, which has no long-term consequences. It’s like doing the extra credit homework when you were in school. Except for the Asian girl with the coke bottle glasses, no one did it, but somehow that selfsame girl got a free ride to an ivy league school and glowing letters of recommendation from all her teachers.

Obedience to the gospel is not optional; it is mandatory. You can’t choose not to obey the gospel of Christ and claim it is well with your soul when the Bible says the opposite. Those who did not obey the gospel of Christ cannot claim ignorance of it. They knew what it said, yet did not follow through and obey it.

All ten virgins got a lot right. All ten were virgins, all ten had a bridegroom, all ten had their lamps lit, all ten fell asleep, and all ten woke up, but five were left to knock on the door and be refused entry. The point isn’t to have a lit lamp; it’s to have a lit lamp until the end. That’s the only place the two groups diverged. Five had enough oil until the end; five had to scramble and try to find some outside, and while they did, the bridegroom shut the door.

In order to have your lamp burning until the end, in order for the fire to keep burning and not sputter out, we must know the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and obey it. A superficial knowledge of the gospel will only take you so far. Partial obedience to the gospel will likewise only take you so far. Sometimes obedience is hard. It requires sacrifice, self-denial, and forfeiting the vision you had for yourself for the one He has for you. The choice seems easy when it’s in the rearview, but when you’re in it, when you’re at the crossroads of life, and you have to make the conscious decision to walk away from your plans and surrender, it’s a bruiser. Especially when you know what’s in store because you saw it play out in the lives of your mentors and elders. I didn’t go into ministry wearing rose-tinted glasses, thinking it would be glamorous and enchanting. I knew what I was getting into, I knew what to expect, and I had to come to terms with the reality of what my life would be and accept it joyfully.

When the Bible tells you that you’ll be hated and rejected, when for the better part of a decade you saw how people confronted with the truth lash out at the messenger, when you know full well it’s a thankless job that will tax your psyche endlessly, you don’t make the choice lightly.

Even Jesus admonished His followers to count the cost because there’s no point in starting out with a lit lamp only to finish in darkness, being told that He never knew you. Anyone who takes this journey lightly has no understanding of the stakes. Anyone who thinks they can fake it until they make it, without ever submitting to the will of God or obeying the gospel of Christ, has fallen into the enemy’s snare and is become prey.

Are you counted among those who endure persecutions and tribulations, thereby being counted worthy of the kingdom of God, or are you counted among those who do not obey the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ? There is no in-between. There is no third option. It’s binary, as is the soon-coming separation of the goats and the sheep.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Thursday, March 30, 2023


 That a news host would have more discernment than most mainline, mega-church pastors should not only disgust you, it should horrify you. No, it shouldn’t terrify you because mutilated, mentally ill individuals with soft bone density aren’t terrifying, but it should horrify you because the vacuous silence from America’s pulpits isn’t just abnormal; it’s unnatural.

Every cause must have a nemesis, a well-defined enemy that can be pointed to and accused of standing in the way of utopia. For Stalin it was Trotsky. For Hitler it was the Jews. For communism it was capitalism. Today it’s those pesky Christians and their Jesus that are keeping the shriveled, wrinkled caterpillar from becoming the beautiful butterfly with the festering wound that needs to be kept open lest the human body heals itself and closes it up. It’s not pretty, but it was never meant to be, for to go against the natural order God ordained is to kick against the goads quite literally.

I am not without empathy. Demonic oppression, possession, mental illness, or whatever rubric you want to pencil it under are all real things. My empathy ends when your mental illness becomes a danger and direct threat to my family and those close to me. Where my empathy ends is when you give voice to the idea that the only way you can live with yourself is if you end me.

Sorry, pudding, but this knuckle dragger hasn’t been on estrogen for the better part of a decade, and my muscle density hasn’t withered into nothingness in that opening a pickle jar makes my knees knock together. I’m pretty sure I can knock the crazy right out of you if I have to, but there I go, not living up to the super spiritual expectations some have projected onto me.

That’s the problem, though, isn’t it? For the better part of three decades, the most effete and effeminate men have risen to prominence in Christendom. Because their only trick was to pander to the simple and simpleminded, they summarily demonized anyone who showed a spine or any semblance of masculinity. Everyone got a label, unloving, uncaring, or unwilling to change with the times; if you weren’t validating and celebrating rebellion, you just weren’t the right type of Christian.

Effete, feminine qualities became the hallmarks of spirituality, and dare anyone raise their voice above a coo, then you know who animates their proclamations, don’t you? You can’t make people feel uncomfortable. After all, what would Jesus do? Jesus would make them feel uncomfortable. When you point that tidbit out, they’re quick to tell you that their Jesus wouldn’t, and you’re left scratching your head trying to explain how there’s only one Jesus, and it’s the Jesus of the Bible. Having lost the argument, they’re sure to pivot to some emotional plea because it’s all they have in their arsenal.  

If you weren’t a single mother, you were, by process of elimination, a toxic male, and thereby worthy of being shunned as thoroughly as the Amish shun someone caught listening to shortwave radio. They created an atmosphere where they alone remained and, as such, were deemed the most masculine of the effeminate men, redefining masculinity and teaching generation after generation that the battlefield was no place for a young man but hiding behind his mother’s skirts was.

I’m not trying to make anyone angry just for the sake of it. I’m trying to explain that we didn’t get to where we are overnight, and if we hope to remedy the situation, we can’t hope to do it overnight, either.

The first thing that must take place is that men of virtue, conviction, holiness, and fearlessness must boldly speak the truth anew. They must call sin by name, call out the danger when they see it approaching, and be immovable in their convictions.

We cannot have men who do not claim to be shepherds of God’s house show more virtue and conviction than those who do. If need be, we must shame the cowards into action, spurn them to wakefulness, and goad them into taking a stand. If they still refuse, then it is clear they are not on the side of truth, or light, or righteousness, but are siphons, leeches, grifters who saw the potential for wealth if only they told people what they wanted to hear, and removed unpopular things like holiness unto God from their repertoire.

The moment you saw a fully grown man yelling “it’s ma’am” at a pimply-faced kid in a GameStop, you could see where this was headed. The trajectory was clear, and violence was an issue of when not if. Yet, here we still are, and powerful leaders of Christendom are bending over backward, trying to calm their skittish sheep and get them back to sleep or to another presentation of drag queen story hour.

Some are already awake and starting to make a fuss. They’re already asking uncomfortable questions of their hireling shepherds and aren’t liking the answers they’re getting in return.

This won’t be the last of it, I fear. And with each horrid act, they will insist it’s your fault for not being accepting enough, loving enough, inclusive enough, for not celebrating and validating and encouraging your own kids to butcher themselves and live in a perpetual state of self-loathing.

You didn’t do enough to validate their mental illness, and for that, you and your children deserve to die!

Just to be clear, I am under no obligation to feed into or go along with your delusion. I am under no obligation to say an apple’s an orange just to pacify your fragile, fractured mind. That you would insist I do so lest I incur your wrath is a place you don’t want to go because there’s consequences in them there hills.

The battle lines aren’t being drawn; they’ve already been drawn. This might be a good time to check and see which side your denomination, pastor, elder board, or bishop are on. The most effective thing you can do as an individual is to stop giving your time and resources to people who hate you and want to see you dead. Start there.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Wednesday, March 29, 2023


 I am responsible for my own actions, not for what other people do. If I’m driving down the highway and my sole concern is how others are driving, at some point, I’ll crash into something because I’m not paying enough attention to where I’m going.

I grew up in Eastern Europe. Most of the roads are two lanes, if that, with potholes and craters so big one would think they’d just been air bombed the night before. If you’re not careful or constantly on guard, you just won’t be long for this world because even guardian angels have their limitations.

Between avoiding horse-drawn carriages, inebriated people who thought the middle of the road was the perfect place for a nap, and BMW drivers who woke up that morning thinking it was a good day to die, any trip longer than the grocery store across town will likely be a suicide run. What is it with BMW drivers? It’s like they have an aggression button built into their steering wheel. Thirty extra seconds aren’t worth your life. Then again, some people just like living dangerously. All fine and good until it’s at the expense of another’s existence, namely me or mine.

Living in a place where driving is deemed a full-contact sport does make one appreciate the need for prayers of protection when you leave and prayers of thanks when you return. Things have gotten better over the years, but unless you are a driver that’s used to making split-second, life-altering decisions every few minutes or so, Romania might not be the place you cut your driving teeth.

When it comes to what other drivers are doing, my only concern is that I don’t hit them, and they don’t run me off the road. Whether their hands are at the ten and two positions or they’re checking their mirrors before they turn are details they must contend with, and if they do something unlawful, that’s something they will have to answer for.

If, however, someone is a public hazard, and it’s clear that they will, in short order, cause someone great bodily harm or worse, then I will do what I can to sideline them, stop them, or slow them down because it’s the right thing to do.

We all have the same driving manual but are individually accountable for how much we study it and how we apply it to our daily driving. Some men read it and disregard it entirely, doing as they will until they run a red light and get t-boned by a semi. Others read it, apply it, and are aware of their surroundings making sure that, as far as they are concerned, they are not being slothful or sloppy.

God’s never busy setting up a speed trap, eating donuts, or taking a nap, so the chances of knowingly disobeying Him and getting away with it are zero. Rebellion has consequences. For some, the consequences are immediate; for others delayed, but there are always consequences.

2 Thessalonians 1:3-10, “We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.”

I’d give Universalism a chance if not for the Bible. That’s the thing. If the manual says you’re supposed to drive on the right side of the road and you start mowing down people’s fences and driving through their backyards, you can’t say you’re following the rules.

When He returns, it won’t be just to reward the righteous but to repay with tribulation those who trouble God’s people and take vengeance upon the wicked. There is no gentility in Paul’s description of what will occur on that Day, there is no sense of water under the bridge or bygones being bygones.

Perhaps our diminished collective view of who God is allows this generation to spit in His face and then have the temerity to tell Him it’s raining. Perhaps we’ve been feasting on a diet of love and infinite grace without an iota of individual accountability for so long that we see God as some shriveled thing under a mountain of blankets shaking a liver-spotted finger and rolling His eyes at our rebellion but nothing more.

Jesus is returning, and it’s not with a basket of freshly baked muffins and an invitation to parlay with the darkness. He is coming to give those who are troubled rest, but also to meet out vengeance on those who do not know or obey Him. This isn’t an opinion; it’s Scripture. Do with it what you will.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Tuesday, March 28, 2023


 It goes far beyond unremarkably average people finding a means by which they can be deemed remarkable. It goes far beyond confusion or psychosis, and that the church isn’t seeing it for what it is, and in many instances, they validate it, encourage it, and celebrate it is tantamount to spiritual treason. When you strip everything else away, all that remains, and will ever be a constant, is the ongoing battle between good and evil, light and dark, God and the devil.

You get the feeling that it’s about more than just men putting on lipstick and saying they are women now because it is. There is no more blatant, flagrant, brazen, or deliberate way of telling God He was wrong to His face than to say that when He knew you in the womb, He messed up the most basic of tasks.

That’s what it is. That’s what it’s about, and that’s what it’s always been about. It’s about undermining the authority, omniscience, and omnipotence of God Himself. If God can get something so simple as wrong as to make me a Bob when I was supposed to be Betty, then maybe He is not so omniscient after all. Perhaps it’s just good public relations that makes men think Him omnipotent.

That is, after all, what they are saying when they insist they were born in the wrong body, or better still, born as the wrong species. How could God not know that little Molly was actually a labradoodle? I mean, Molly’s only four, but she’s very self-aware, and her mommy’s always dreamt of being deemed brave and trailblazing in between drinking sessions. What does God know anyway? Even medical professionals are coming around to putting their seal of approval on the lunacy du jour.

It’s Eve and the forbidden fruit all over again, but this time with binders, scalpels, surgeries, estrogen, and testosterone blockers. If God fumbled something as obvious as one’s gender or species, what else was He wrong about?

See how the devil works? See how insidious and nefarious the plan is? And the church, having the discernment of a cactus, went along with it as though it was nothing more than people trying to express themselves. No, the church wasn’t the doctor Frankenstein in this case, it just provided the body parts to create the monster, and it’s not even fully grown yet. Once it gets its sea legs, this monster will ravage everything in its path until it burns itself out, destroying countless innocents along the way.

We’ve been conditioned not to point out that the emperor has no clothes for so long that doing so now requires either an act of bravery or the innocence of a child unaware of the potential blowback they might incur. It’s what the godless are counting on because, as is the case with being sedentary, the longer you are silent, the greater the chance that you will remain so. Let some other rube stick his head up, speak out, and say something. Sure, after public sentiment shifts, and we’re no longer in danger of blowback, we’ll act brave and beat our chests, and make bombastic speeches, but now, now is the time to be smart and stealthy and blend into the background so no one notices us.

What’s a few dead here and there when compared to an appearance on Oprah to peddle your latest ghostwritten drivel about finding happiness within or seeing yourself not as you are but as you’d like to be someday? We’ve got units to move, perverts to pacify, the godless to coddle, and the hell-bound to reassure that it’s just a clerical error and no one’s gotten around to changing out the signs yet.

Nobody really goes to hell; it’s just a scare tactic. Powerhouses like Rick Warren and Joel Osteen agree that God was just joshing when He said the soul that sins would die. It’s like when your parents insisted that if you don’t stop watching television, you’d go blind. See, you haven’t gone blind even though you’re still watching television. God’s not your mom, though, and He doesn’t make empty threats.

So what’s the point of the rant this morning? Simply that there are certain realities the powers that be would rather we not dwell upon because it destroys the narrative they’ve painstakingly tried to weave.

Let’s just say that if so clear a pattern were to emerge, that of the latest mindless, cruel, and pointless expressions of violence with mass casualties, over half were professing Christians, all you’d hear on television is how Christianity radicalizes people into committing atrocities. There would be no end to it. Pseudo-scholars would bloviate about the dangers of religion as a whole, but more precisely Christianity, psychologists would come on talking about how faith-based education retards social interaction, and even pastors would come on making apologies for how mean-spirited Jesus comes off when He says love your enemies.  

By my count, and yes, I’m keeping track even though we’re not supposed to be, the individual in Chicago during the Christmas day parade incident, the one in Texas, and now the one in Tennessee either dabbled with crossdressing, with photographic proof, or identified as transgender. A pattern is emerging that no one wants to point out. Yes, I know the whole thing about correlation versus causation, but ducks quack, dogs bark, and pigs grunt.

I know; facts. That’s just hate speech right there, them facts; what about the crusades? Those were horrible, and you don’t condemn those! If you have to go back to the crusades to try and make your point, you don’t have a leg to stand on…maybe if you identify as a chair.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Monday, March 27, 2023


 There are things we Christians argue over that will be clarified instantly. Within the span of a snap of a finger, notions like my truth, my journey, or my god would never do such and such will dissipate like fog wisps in the sun. There will no longer be tribes within tribes, cliques, or factions. Self-professing spiritual people will discover that they weren’t, and even if they had been, it would not have been enough unless Christ Jesus was the Lord and King of their life.

On that day, we will discover that Xerox copies of copies of copies pale in comparison to the real thing, and that which we should have aspired to isn’t to be like our favorite preacher or missionary but to be like Christ. When flawed men insist you should follow them, you will end up with flaws because an imperfect thing cannot teach another how to achieve perfection.

Following men is easier on the flesh, though, and I think that’s why so many do it. Jesus will not make allowances for sin and rebellion, but men will. Depending on their level of avarice and how deep their need for validation and acceptance, preachers today will readily do away with the very words of Christ just to pacify the godless and not stir the ire of those wholly given over to perversion.

That men would presume to make excuses for God and insist that’s not what He meant when the Book clearly says He did is something that should make us cringe and hold our breath because it’s only a matter of time before God Himself clarifies the situation.

Ezekiel 13:3, “Thus says the Lord God: ‘Woe to the foolish prophets, who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing!’”

Well, now you’re just grasping at straws because none of us can really know what woe is. How do you know woe is something bad? I mean, when you see a dolphin doing a summersault, you go woe, don’t you? Actually, it’s whoa, not woe, because let’s face it, dolphins that do tricks are awesome.

It’s easy to say dumb stuff when you don’t want to acknowledge the reality of the situation. That’s the only recourse of the handful that still believe in God among the spiritual elite of today. They have to come up with some Gordian knot of an explanation for the definition of a word just so they can sleep at night without downing a bottle of Scotch for dessert.

Even the apple of God’s eye had a drinking problem.

Ezekiel 13:8-9, “Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Because you have spoken nonsense and envisioned lies, therefore I am indeed against you,’ says the Lord God. ‘My hand will be against the prophets who envision futility and who divine lies; they shall not be in the assembly of My people, nor written in the record of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord God.’”

I get it. Who wouldn’t want to ride their pet dinosaur through ice cream land? If an amusement park could offer that as an attraction, you’d have people lining up for miles. Real thing. Not making it up. Didn’t consume bad mutton or eat bad mushrooms. A self-professing prophetess actually said these things.

The fly in the ointment, however, is that it’s not an amusement park you’re referencing; it is the place Jesus went to prepare for those who would deny themselves, pick up their crosses, and follow after Him.

When you make a mockery of heaven, speak nonsense, and envision lies, know that God’s hand is against you, and you will not be in the assembly of His people. That’s what God said. He’s known for keeping His word from generation to generation. In fact, He’s kind of a stickler about it.

Some folks act as though God doesn’t have a wrathful side or that He will not judge the wicked and their wickedness judiciously and righteously. They’ve bought into the single-faceted God with the singular emotion, and all day, every day, all He is is love and nothing else. It’s as though all God does is sit up in heaven, smiling a placid smile, eyes unfocused and staring off into the distance, waiting to excuse another act of rebellion by His creation.

Why, for God to expect anything more of His creation than to have the honor of loving them despite their disobedience, rejection, and mockery would be beyond the pale. Just sit there and love our entitled, infantilized, spoiled, petty, vindictive, haughty, prideful, duplicitous, rebellious, and hedonistic selves. No, you don’t get a say in how we live, you don’t get a say in whom we worship, you don’t get a say in what we do or how we present you to the world. Just love us, and be grateful that we let you!

Your Son died; fine. We fight for the right to kill our sons and daughters every day! What’s the big deal? We stand in line waiting for some cruel ghoul to dispatch the life growing inside us with brutal efficiency and vacuum the bits and pieces of what was once a whole human out lest we get an infection that would make us incapable of getting pregnant anew, just so we can murder another son or daughter.

No sir, you’re not going to guilt trip me into holiness and sanctification. I’m going to be riding my pet dinosaur through ice cream land while you suckers are being hated for His name’s sake. It’s your punishment for not believing in cotton candy clouds and heavenly sasquatch. Apparently, the sasquatch and the unicorns are best buds in heaven. With revelations like that, who needs John the revelator?

I could go on for volumes, but knowing that we’re in the ballpark of what modern-day Christianity has become makes me sad inside. Will the Son of Man find faith on the earth when He returns? I guess it all depends on how much longer He’ll be. Give it another couple of decades, and I’d be surprised if He did.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Sunday, March 26, 2023


 If you’re not home, does it matter whether the thief comes in the day or at night? A thief will do what a thief will do, whether it’s light out or not, as long as he gets the opportunity to do it. If Jesus is coming as a thief in the night, it likely means He’ll find a lot more people than one might think sleeping, not watching, and not being prepared for the eventuality of His return.

Yes, it’s a strange thing to think about, but that’s how my mind works, and the specificity of the comparison was always one that got my wheels turning. Why as a thief in the night? Why not just as a thief? The only insinuation that fits, that makes sense, that brings clarity to an otherwise muddled analogy is that when He comes, many will be asleep because the faux-shepherds and outright wolves managed to minimize the urgency of the hour.

That is the most heartbreaking thing of all. That though they know the Master will return, the servants will be preoccupied with other things, not having prepared for His coming, not awake and watchful for His appearing. Why would they be? They were told by those supposedly entrusted by the Master to oversee the household that it’s one big party right up until the end; then, when He returns, He’ll be so glad to see them that He’ll take them to His bosom no matter their condition.

Passed out in the koi pond wearing filthy rags and dreaming of your glory days? Come on in; Jesus is waiting. I always imagined the Master’s house would have a koi pond. It’s classy. Anyway, at some point, we will realize the full extent of the damage aberrant teachings have inflicted upon the common man, and that’s when the anger will boil up. And it won’t be that fading anger where you realize you got duped into shelling out forty bucks for the Trimmer You wellness package, guaranteed to melt off the pounds, which was just an 8x5 card that said: “eat less, exercise more!”. It will be the type of anger that will have air time because it’s not forty bucks we’re talking about here; it’s eternity.

It’s not as though we didn’t know the times we were living. It’s not as though we’re not seeing the events the Bible foretells of that will herald the last days, but rather than be sober and vigilant, we’re preoccupied with knowing what the Book tells us we were not given to know.

No man knows the day or the hour should suffice for the followers of Christ. He’s coming back! That’s all that matters. He’s coming back, and His reward is with Him to give to every one according to their work. That we do the work should be the focus because He’s keeping track of how much we do and whether or not we do it according to His instructions.

When He returns, it will be with ledger in hand, and you’ll get paid for every hour you put in. That’s what He said. What other people say varies, but I’m still going to go with Jesus on this one.

Revelation 22:12-14, “And behold I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to everyone according to his work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last. Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.”

First, Jesus tells us that He’s coming back and what He’s bringing, then details His credentials, so all who read His words might understand why He isn’t just making empty promises or why, though He might want to, He will be unable to follow through.

He can return, He can bring His reward, and He can give to every one according to their work because He is the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. It’s not some nobody that’s making you this promise; It’s the only One who can follow through and keep it.

Although rarely focused on in the contemporary church, there is an expectation of how He should find you upon His return. I know pointing out the obvious and having the Scripture references to back it up is unloving and lacking in grace, works salvation, or my internalized need to be punished for perceived inadequacies, but at least you won’t be showing up to my house with pitchforks and torches. As far as I’m concerned, that’s a good thing because I can’t afford tall fences, private security, or to live in a gated community like the pimps insisting on smooth sailing ahead while bleeding you for your last dime.

The Book is clear that Jesus will return. It is also clear that when He returns, not all will be found ready and waiting. There will be a clamor for oil, and there will be a clamor for light by all those who squandered the time they had and did not ensure that they had oil in both their lamps and vessels.

The foolish virgins made no provisions for any delay on behalf of the bridegroom. They had firmly established in their minds that He would come at an appointed time, a time of their choosing rather than His, and assumed that He would bend to their will and do as they desired.

Why have extra oil when you won’t need it? As the old maxim goes, better to have and not need than need and not have.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Saturday, March 25, 2023


 As a whole, there are roughly six times more prophecies regarding Christ’s return than His birth in the Bible. Depending on your search parameters, there are fifty prophecies regarding Christ’s birth in the Bible and an impressive three hundred about His return.

The reality that Jesus will be back one day and that His reward will come with Him is not ambiguous or difficult to piece together. It’s not like some modern-day positions some believers take where you have to wedge a round peg into a square hole to make the idea feasible.

Jesus said He would return many times throughout His time here on earth. There is also a myriad of prophecies regarding His return throughout the Bible, just in case someone wanted to pull the ‘in the mouth of two or three witnesses’ card.

This is not an issue that’s up for debate. This isn’t like the sprinkled or submerged debate with water baptism. The Bible unequivocally tells us that Jesus will return, as does Jesus Himself, to the point that one would have to be willfully blind and ignorant to have any lingering doubts about His intentions.

John 14:1-4, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may also be. And where I go, you know, and the way you know.”

Not only did Christ promise He would return, but He also promised He would not be idle until that time. He went to prepare a place for those who are His so that when He returns, He may receive them, and they may be with Him.

If you grew up in the eighties or early nineties, and you were from what was deemed a working-class family, your parent’s version of a summer camp was likely making the eldest watch over you during the day. All that really entailed was to make sure that when they got home, you wouldn’t be handing them your thumb or your eye in a jar.

Being Eastern European, whenever my mom had to work, and my grandmother was not around, she’d leave instructions as to what she expected to get done around the apartment before she got home as well. Granted, that wasn’t often because grandma was always present with her own set of instructions, and even if she wasn’t, there wasn’t much for us to do as far as fun was concerned.

Our apartment complex didn’t have a pool, a playground, or even a sandbox, and the one complex which did down at the end of the block had a keycard system and spiked fence that made it impossible to get in. Those were deemed the rich kids by us poor kids, and when it was really hot during summer, we’d go peer through the fence to catch a glimpse of the pool, then come back to our slice of paradise and play with the water hose until the Mexican lady whose window the hose bibb was under started yelling at us to vas de aqui. She’d say other things too, but I later found out they were naughty words.

Whatever else we did, we made sure to do what mom told us first, whether washing the dishes or making our beds, because mom was not one for playing games when it came to following through and doing what she’d outlined before she left.

We didn’t spend our time watching the clock for when she would return; we did what she told us to do before she returned.

That she might not return to check up on us one day never crossed our minds because mom always came back, sometimes tired, sometimes with callouses on her hands, but she’d always come back.

Jesus told us He would return, and we should take it to heart. The when of it doesn’t matter so much, at least not to me, because I know where He went and what He’s doing until the appointed time arrives, and we get to meet Him in the air.

Imagine all the things we could get done if our focus shifted from when He might return to being diligent in doing what He commanded us to do while He was gone. It’s a formidable list, to be sure, and not one that can be hammered out in an afternoon. There are ongoing pursuits we must endeavor throughout our existence, whether until we are taken home or until He returns.

That’s the thing I never quite understood about the whole debate regarding the timing of His return. If only to defend what is written, I’ve weighed in and presented what the Bible says, but as far as having a personal bone to pick, who’s to say I’m to see another sunrise? Who’s to say you are?
That we would go back and forth regarding the timing of Christ’s return, knowing full well that we may be long gone from this earth by the time it occurs, is a waste of both time and energy.

That He is returning has been established. That He has left specific instructions as to what we must do until His return has likewise been established. In light of these truths, the only pertinent question to which I must have an answer is, what will He find me doing when He returns?

Am I redeeming the time, or am I twiddling my thumbs? Am I furthering the Kingdom of God, or am I having pointless internet battles with strangers over tertiary issues that will prove true of their own accord?

With love in Christ, 

Michael Boldea, Jr.

Friday, March 24, 2023


 A soldier tasked with a duty remains at his post until his commanding officer delivers new orders. It doesn’t matter how long it takes or how difficult the task; they were entrusted with a responsibility. Whether to stand guard, to protect a battlement, to watch from the towers to man the drawbridge, to ready the horses, to supply the archers, whatever it is they were commanded to do, they must do to the best of their ability for as long as it is required.

Whether they’re comfortable while carrying out their duties, whether they enjoy what they’ve been tasked with, whether it’s intellectually fulfilling, or draws the envious eyes of peers doesn’t enter into the equation. Orders were given, orders must be carried out, and failure to do so will result in disciplinary action.

The only people I’m willing to baby in this world are my daughters, and they’re eight and five. The older one’s already on the outs, and she doesn’t like it one bit, and the little one’s getting close to the threshold where kid cloves are more of a detriment than they are a necessary tool to spare your children’s feelings.

To be expected to infantilize adults is one bridge too far for me, and though some might deem it cruel, cold, heartless, or unloving, it’s their perception and not the reality of the situation. It’s not about sparing their feelings. It’s about making you feel some type of way so that you agree with their position or give license to the sin that they love more than they love God. Life’s too short to play stupid games because I know what kind of prizes such games hand out.

Unless someone is standing behind you, pulling your eyelids apart, forcing you to read what I write, the remedy is simple. Click away, and thank you for visiting.

No, I will not make allowances just because some people think I should, not because I’m stiff-necked as I’ve been accused of being, but because the Bible will not make those allowances. If I were to insist that the way is wider than the Bible says it is, you shouldn’t be listening to me, never mind taking my word over the Bible’s.

There are plenty of scripture twisters out there. Throw a stone at your television set ,and you’re bound to hit one. Why do some people insist that everyone should be a scripture twister just to pacify them? Seek out those who would tickle your ears. Seek out those who would tell you what you want to hear. Why do I have to damn myself to hell because the truth grates on you?

You’ve got your four hundred telling you what you want to hear. Could there not be one who will tell you what you need to hear? When the king’s messenger went to Micaiah, he was quick to inform him that there was a consensus regarding his query. All the prophets encourage the king with one accord. Don’t be a wet blanket, don’t be a stick in the mud, let your words be like theirs, and speak encouragement.

Micaiah’s answer was short and to the point: whatever the Lord speaks to me, that I will speak. I could just imagine the messenger’s face, the hand wringing, and the flustered look. Just go along, buddy. Four hundred prophets can’t all be wrong; you’re just one guy. Do you want to be like that one out of thirty dentists that doesn’t recommend Crest whitening toothpaste? You think you’re better than your peers? Are you too good for Crest?

If the retelling of Micaiah’s experience teaches us anything, it’s that majority consensus is irrelevant and meaningless. A majority can agree on something, and a majority can be wrong. The mere fact that they are a majority does not bestow them with infallibility. That one guy the king hated and who was encouraged to go along had the truth of it, not because he was smarter than the four hundred who got it wrong but because he relied on the Lord to speak to Him.

Some people say things because they seem reasonable enough in their own minds. Others do it because they want to ingratiate themselves with someone in power or authority. Then there are those who care nothing for ingratiating themselves or trusting the musings of their own intellect but rely on God to speak and remain silent when He doesn’t.

Our general commanded us to occupy until He comes, so here I am, and here I will remain, because what He stated both implicitly and explicitly is that He will return. Jesus was the first to coin “I’ll be back,” and not only did He mean it, but He also has the power and authority to make it so.

Jesus said He would return, and that’s enough for me. Until such a time, I have my orders, and so do you. I don’t know about your orders but my orders aren’t to bicker and infight, my orders aren’t to be distracted or careless, my orders are to watch and pray and spot the approaching enemy before he reaches the gates and lays siege to the city.

Jesus never asked me to understand the enemy’s motivations, or take his feelings into account, or try to walk a mile in his shoes. He didn’t ask me to try and hammer out a truce or a cessation of hostilities. He commanded me to occupy until He comes - anything other than that I do of my own volition and by definition, outside of His will.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Thursday, March 23, 2023

He Does

 When did it become acceptable for soldiers to mimic lovelorn school girls, picking at daisy petals and alternatively mumbling he loves me, he loves me not? When was it that we grew comfortable with the arduous task of perpetual analysis, to the point that all we do is analyze, split hairs, and debate amongst ourselves, never actually marching onto war? It is a strategy of sorts, I guess. You argue over the route you’ll take to the battlefield so long that you miss the battle altogether, but still, you show up afterward just in case your side won for the accolades and attaboys.

If I’m not afraid of death, I’m certainly not scared of keyboard warriors with sensitive feelings and a need to vent. I understand that excuses are the mainstay of the coward, but it doesn’t mean that the excuses carry any weight. Most contemporary Christians will not defend the truth because they are concerned about how the world will view them if they do. As such, they remain silent even when everything inside them is screaming to say something, anything because the voiceless need a voice too.

If you are a sheep, your faith will mirror it, but so will your life. If you are His and He is yours, you know Him as Lord and King. Because He is Lord and King, you also live your life according to His will and Word.

1 John 2:1-2, “My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.”

Well, there you have it, all this talk of sanctification for naught. Holiness is for the birds; I have an advocate, so I can do what I will, and Jesus will fix it. It’s like having a lawyer on retainer, knowing you’re going to break the law. The only unknown is the measure of severity.

Not so fast, Speed Racer; there’s more to the chapter than the first two verses, but we don’t want to be bothered with that. Knowing that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, the need for an Advocate with the Father is undeniable. What we must establish is what sort of sin John is speaking of. There is a difference between habitual, continual, and unrepented of sin and an angry thought toward someone or action less than ideal for a child of God.

1 John 2:3-6, “Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also walk just as He walked.”

If your walk and life are not commensurate with the walk and life of Jesus, though you say you know Him, you are a liar. That’s not me saying it; that’s the Bible saying it. That whole notion of I can live whichever way and still make it on The Way is contradicted by a multitude of Scriptures.

Yes, I know, the Apostles didn’t have the internet, so they couldn’t run a poll to see which opinion was more popular, but a majority doesn’t make something right by the nature of being a majority. Throughout history, it’s those who were in the minority that turned out to be correct because there is a madness to crowds that is dangerous and twisted, in that good seems evil to their eyes, and evil seems good.

If I call myself a sheep but all I want to do is hang out with the wolves, and the wolves accept me as one of their own, then maybe I’m not a sheep after all.

You can’t judge a book by its cover, but you can judge a wolf by its fangs. You can tell whether a tree is good or not based on the fruit it produces, and no amount of sugar and cinnamon will make bad fruit passable as good.

The Bible says we know Him, not if we have a fish sticker on our car, wear a white dove pin, attend a particular denomination, or support our favorite televangelist. The Book says we know that we know Him if we keep His commandments.

Living out one’s faith is more complex than speaking the right words. I’ve heard people declare that Jesus is Lord, then watched as they did things that would make the devil blush. Our declaration requires foundation. When we speak the words with conviction, we will live according to His precepts because if He is Lord, then our faithfulness and obedience are naturally occurring.

The how of it is easy enough. In everything you do, make certain that you are willing to suffer for the sake of the truth rather than be willing to let the truth suffer because of your actions. If that is the metric by which you live your life, then you will know obedience, self-control, self-discipline, and restraint.

Remember who you are. Remember what He promised. Remember that eternity is forever; where you spend it is the only metric yet to be decided. If you are a sheep, then follow the Shepherd, hear His voice, and obey His commands.

It’s not complicated if we choose to humble ourselves. Only when the flesh, our pride, and elevated sense of self insert themselves and wrestle for dominance does this journey become vexing and troublesome.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Wednesday, March 22, 2023


 I’ve never understood believers who are terrified of dying. I understand not wanting to die because you’d be leaving something unfinished, because your kids aren’t all grown and out of the house, or because you know your spouse would be lonely without you, so for their sake, you want to abide for a little while longer.

Fear though, terror at the thought of catching something randomly that may endanger your life somehow and thereby isolating yourself from everyone, living like a hermit, and dipping the nuggets the Uber Eats kid delivered in disinfectant before eating them, that I don’t understand. If you knew what that kid did to your nuggets before ringing the doorbell, you’d be doing shots of the sanitizer, but let’s pretend they’re all wholesome, well-adjusted teenagers that are just trying to earn their way through college by delivering fast food to people too lazy or fearful of getting out of their homes.

The promise of eternal life eliminates the fear of death. It doesn’t just tamp it down or diminish it; it eliminates it. We have a genuine and abiding hope in Christ and His promise that we would be where He went to prepare a place for us.

The fear of death no longer holds sway; it has lost its sting, and dread no longer has a place in the believer’s life. You’re not stepping into the unknown full of terror and misgivings about what will come. You’re going home into the arms of the one who loves you to the point of already having given His life for you.

Had they not had the hope and the promise of eternal life, do you believe men and women would have gone to their deaths while being burned alive singing hymns and songs of praise to God? If you want an eye-opening history lesson as to what the primary church went through as far as persecution is concerned and what some believers go through today, grab a copy of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs and give it a read.

In order not to love your life unto death, you must possess hope and assurance in something beyond this life. If I have the promise of eternal life, what does it matter to me what men do to this flesh? If I know that to be absent from the body is to be one with Christ, what have I to fear?

This is why believers were so negatively impacted by certain pastors and elders when they were given the ultimatum to either put something into their bodies they didn’t want or be shunned and no longer be considered among the fellowship of the brethren. I get that Franklin Graham’s a big deal in certain circles, but I can’t just take his word that Jesus would have rolled up His sleeve for the likes of this administration or the man tasked with ensuring everyone got one.

As I explained to a friend recently, I don’t want to die, but I’m not afraid of death. I’ll be here for as long as God will have me, and not a minute longer, no matter how much I may try to extend my time here by eating seaweed and kale or whatever atrocious thing is en vogue this week.

I’m not about to dedicate more time than necessary to something I have no control over. It’s just ironic that a guy who subsists on a diet of black coffee and gas station grilled cheeses is outliving professional athletes half his age.

God made me a promise. The same promise He made you, and because I know Him and trust Him, there is not a flicker of doubt in my mind as to His ability to keep it. It’s good enough because He said it. I am not entitled to any special proof regarding God’s sincerity, nor would I require it.

The promise of eternal life is undeniable, as is its originator. No more need be debated on the topic because God’s promises are ironclad, and His ability to carry them out is indisputable.

If you are His sheep and know His voice and follow after Him, you trust Him without equivocation because you know His character, you know His nature, and you know His compassion. It’s those who do not hear, who do not follow, and who do not call Him Lord that need constant reassurance about something God said.

There is a three-year age gap between my daughters. Recently we were swimming at a pool when the youngest walked up to the edge of the pool, and I reached out my arms and said, “jump; daddy will catch you.”

“Are you sure?” she asked, “promise?”

“I promise, baby bear, I’ll catch you.”

She stood there biting her lip when her older sister said, “jump, he’ll catch you; he catches me all the time. Daddy will keep his word.”

Then she jumped, and I caught her because, as the older one pointed out, I am her dad, and I keep my word.

God is not a stranger trying to offer you candy to get you into his van. He is a loving Father who promised eternal life to those who abide in the truth. He doesn’t need to trick you, beguile you, or charm you. You’re not a child; you’re His child. If you are His child, then you already know you can trust Him and that eternal life is yours to lay hold of.

1 John 2:24-25, “Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that He has promised us – eternal life.”

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Of Us

 Certain spiritual issues require thought and introspection. Thankfully none of them are salvific. When it comes to salvific matters, it’s cut and dry, absent ambiguity, because being saved, having the promise of eternity well in hand, and being anchored in it is one of those paramount issues that must be established fully before we can mature and grow as believers.

If I’m constantly questioning whether I’m saved or not, if I’m always wondering whether or not I have eternal life, I’ll have neither the time nor inclination to do anything else but worry. Working while it’s day, doing exploits on behalf of the Kingdom, these things require a foundation of the full conviction and assurance that He knows me, I am His, and He has me well in hand.

Goats pretending to be sheep will never know the peace and joy that comes with being a true sheep, following the Shepherd. It’s largely why many supposed believers require extra-biblical experiences to satisfy or spiritually fulfill them, going off into the weeds to the point of trying their hand at astral projections and out-of-body experiences.

Jesus didn’t say His sheep would know His voice and open their third eye. He said they would know His voice and follow Him. Goats get bored easily, are always looking for excitement, and are always searching for something fresh and new. The taste of green pastures doesn’t change; neither does the taste of fresh water.

That’s why my hackles get raised whenever I hear people declaring that God is doing something fresh, new, never before seen. It’s the ninth wonder of the world sort of stuff, brother; you just have to believe! I don’t, though. I don’t have to believe; you want me to believe, and what you want me to believe is contrary to what my Shepherd tells me I should believe.

1 John 2:18-19, “Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.”

Peppered throughout the Bible, especially when referencing the last days, we have warning upon warning when it comes to deceivers, false prophets, false Christs, and antichrists. There’s quite a mélange of deception, and if you don’t know the Shepherd’s voice, it will be difficult to remain standing.

By what John relates, even during his day, there were individuals who infiltrated the brethren with the singular purpose of deceiving them and leading them astray. This is what he means by those who came out of us because they were not of us. They left the fellowship of the saints because they were never of the fellowship of the saints.

And that’s one way of looking at it: individuals who stray, those who return to the world and the things thereof, were never of the household of faith, to begin with. They were just goats pretending to be sheep hoping to get sheep to become goats, and when it didn’t go as planned, they went on to find new opportunities. At least, John is asserting this when discussing those who strayed.

I’d be perfectly content with ending this train of thought here if not for the fact that those Jesus will say He never knew, prophesied, cast out demons, and did wonders in His name. Those absent intellectual curiosity will likely shrug their shoulders here and say they did those things by the powers of darkness. Still, biblically we know that the devil doesn’t set about destroying his own kingdom.

Coke doesn’t do promo tours for Pepsi, and Nike doesn’t encourage you to buy Reebok. Devils don’t cast out devils, and Satan doesn’t prophesy and do wonders in Christ’s name.

And that’s the philosophical question I’ve been grappling with for a few days now: Was the casting out of devils, the doing of wonders, and the prophesying a long con on the devil’s part? Was he just seeding soil so he could reap a harvest, or did individuals give in to lawlessness and worldliness because they ceased being watchful?

It is feasible that at some point throughout their life, both a sheep and a hog end up in the mud pit. The difference between the two is that the hog loves the mud, while the sheep does its best to extricate itself from it.

When a sheep stumbles, its singular purpose is to get back up and continue following after the Shepherd. A swine’s only focus is to find the next mud puddle he can jump into. How do you know whether or not you have laid hold of the promise? If the mud feels natural to you, if you enjoy it, if every fiber of your being isn’t screaming for you to get out of it, perhaps you are something other than a sheep who hears the Shepherd’s voice.

If you’re reading these words, know it’s not too late. You can still be His, truly His. You can still Hear His voice, follow Him, and know that you possess the promise of eternity. You can know it with the certainty that a sheep knows its shepherd will lead it to still waters and green pastures.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea, Jr. 

Monday, March 20, 2023


 Doubt and uncertainty are toxic to the human condition. Where doubt is present, everything turns gray, and the things that should bring joy do little toward that end. What doubt regarding eternal life does to the spiritual man is akin to someone trying to sit in a plastic chair that’s been out in the sun one too many summers. They attempt to sit gingerly, ease themselves into it, ever trepidatious that at any moment the plastic will give, and they’ll end up on the internet with their family howling with laughter as background noise. Even when they’ve finally seated themselves, they’re hesitant to move around or get comfortable because, in the back of their mind, the nagging thoughts persist. If the chair were made of iron rather than plastic, there would be no hesitation, worry, or concern.

If all someone did was wave a hand in church, but there was never a rebirth, a transformation, a renewal of the mind, the doubt will persist, and they will be leery of walking boldly toward eternity, and rightly so. We have seen the collateral damage of the touch your screen and say this prayer generation in the form of a stunted, withered, malformed, and powerless church.

My wife’s a fan of stretching her faith when it comes to how far she can drive after the little red low-fuel light comes on. As yet, she hasn’t called me from the side road asking to bring some gas, but it’s bound to happen.

Whenever I try to tell her that more gas went into her tank than the allotted capacity, she smiles and says, “I never doubted I’d make it home for a second.” As for me, if I get anywhere near a quarter of a tank, I start getting uncomfortable. It causes me psychological discomfort to know that I’m low on gas, and no matter what I try to do to distract myself, I can’t.

I traveled the highways and byways of this nation enough to know that fifty miles until the next exit seems like an eternity when you’re low on gas, especially before the time of cell phones and automobile clubs that come and help you out if you’re a member. Flat tires are flat tires. You can’t help those. They happen when you least expect them, and you have to deal with it. Running out of gas isn’t accidental. It’s something that could have been avoided had the driver had the presence of mind to pull over and fill up. 

I will freely admit I’ve had times when, unlike my wife, I doubted I’d make it to the next gas station. What I’ve never doubted, not for a second, is that I’d have the promise of eternal life. It’s not because I’m some super-Christian; I’m not. It’s because I read my Bible and believe it.

Issues arise when we believe what people tell us regarding eternal life over what the Bible tells us. If the Bible says one thing and the grinning head on television says another, believe the Bible, always, without equivocation.

Eternal life is a gift and a promise of God for all who belong to Him. What I have to determine as an individual is whether I do belong to Him, whether I’m a sheep or a goat. Sheep follow. Goats wander.

John 10:27-28, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.”

Jesus made it clear: those who are His sheep hear His voice. They are in tune with the Shepherd, and when the Shepherd speaks, they don’t pretend as though they didn’t hear or fail to hear Him because they were distracted by something else.

Not only do His sheep hear His voice, but they also follow Him. If we only hear His voice but do not follow Him, are we still His sheep? If we hear His voice but choose to go our own way rather than obey Him, are we still His sheep?

Jesus knows those who are His. They hear His voice and follow Him, and to them, He has promised eternal life. He also declared that no one would snatch His sheep out of His hand. You ask why I’m certain about eternity. Because Jesus said no one could snatch me out of His hand, and I’m not about to wiggle out of it voluntarily.

You can tell a lot about a person’s spiritual condition by how they frame the questions they ask. If the first thing out of the gate they want to know is what they can get away with, what they can do insofar as skirt the line but not cross it, if it acts like a goat and rebels like a goat, it’s a goat.

I’ve even had people get into units of measurement with me as though the cutoff is a pint of beer rather than a pitcher. If I am a sheep and He is the Shepherd, then my only desire is to listen for His voice, hear Him, and follow, not to determine how much time I can spend roaming the crags and cliffs and still end up with the flock.

The problem with being a wandering sheep is that wolves are still a reality we must contend with. A lone sheep away from its shepherd makes for a mighty fine meal.

The crux of the issue has been improperly framed for so long that the words of Jesus no longer resonate, and His promise fails to provide the expected comfort.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Sunday, March 19, 2023


 I know how many children I have. I don’t have to count on my fingers or think about it for a minute. Granted, my number’s just two, but I would wager even Amish parents whose numbers reach well into the teens know exactly how many children they have. Especially if you’re talking about the moms, not only do they know how many children they have, but regardless of the number, they can tell you their eye color, birthdate, food preferences, and their first words out of a dead sleep.

Other than the odd exception here or there, where selfishness has cast out love and paternal instincts, moms and dads love their kids and want what’s best for them. That’s not to say that sometimes kids go off the rails, want nothing to do with their mom or dad, and make such a mess of their lives that they become the defacto cautionary tale other parents tell their children.

Some things you’re just sure of in life. Salvation and eternal life should be one of those things, yet some fill pews every Sunday who are dubious and uncertain when it comes to them. It’s not a modern-day problem, I assure you. It is likely the reason John penned his first epistle.

So much doubt had been sown within the body of believers John was writing to that they doubted the fundamental tenets of faith in Christ. The joy, the peace, and the comfort had been sapped out of them, and individuals who once walked the path joyfully were now sour, dour, and despondent.

No, I’m not talking about eternal security. However, it is biblically proven that God will never initiate separation. God will never bar the door to those who wander, but those who wander must choose to return home. If I’m half a world away salivating at the thought of eating some pods the pigs are feasting on, then I’m not home, am I?

We are so selective in our reading of the gospel. We butcher it as though it were cattle, take the three verses we like, and chuck the rest of it. In order for the prodigal son to be received back by his father, he had to make the conscious choice to return home, then follow through and actually do it.

Had he stayed in the fields feeding swine and not returned to his father’s house, he never would have experienced his father’s embrace and reconciliation. The prodigal did one other thing: he confessed his trespass and acknowledged that only his father’s mercy could restore him. Not his merit, not his works, only his father’s grace.

Luke 15:21, “And the son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.”

The prodigal returned home! He didn’t stop in for a quick meal and then returned to partying with the pigs. His father’s house wasn’t just a convenient place to get over a hangover between drinking sessions or somewhere to crash trying to avoid responsibility. He didn’t return home just to lick his wounds so he could return to the low place of envying swine.  He came back home to stay.

I’ve run across people who know that they are wayward yet use the parable of the prodigal son to remain so. They tell themselves that one day they’ll make it back, one day they’ll return, one day they’ll make things right, but that one day is far into the future, a future they are not guaranteed. That’s the thing about parables and stories in general; they usually have satisfying endings. Real life doesn’t. In real life, the good guys don’t always win, the prodigals don’t always make it back home, and sometimes, people already in their father’s house don’t appreciate what they have.

The declarative statement John makes to his audience is undeniable. He insists on driving home the point repeatedly, leaving nothing to chance or interpretation. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”

You don’t have to guess at it or wonder or suppose. It’s not something someone can tell you you have; it’s something you know you have. You know you have eternal life because you believe in the name of the Son of God.”

Belief compels action. It is the natural flow of things. If I believe a storm is coming, then I prepare for the storm. My actions are a direct result of my belief. If I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He redeemed me from destruction, then I will honor Him, serve Him, worship Him, and praise Him.

You cannot believe something as profound as Jesus dying for your sins, then do nothing about it. You can’t help but weep at the love, and the mercy and the grace. You can’t help but be in awe and wonder of Him. You can’t help but surrender your heart, meager and paltry as it might be, because you know you can do nothing in a thousand lifetimes to make up for what He did.

God is justified in His wrath and judgment on those who trample His Son underfoot. He is justified in punishing those who count the blood of the covenant by which they were sanctified, a common thing. It doesn’t matter how many churches you planted, how many ministries you started, or how many wonders and signs you performed if you insult the Spirit of grace and refuse to return, repent, and reconcile.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  

Saturday, March 18, 2023


 We may be as unique as snowflakes, but when it comes to reactions regarding eternity, there are only three that men can have. They may be nuanced, with certain small addendums or omissions here and there, but on the whole, when you dig down and do away with all the unnecessary fluff, there are only three.

The first of these is men being lost, knowing full well that they are lost, and being wholly unconcerned about it. I’ve seen people wear shirts declaring that they know they’re going to hell and don’t care. I’ve even had people say it to me candidly when trying to have a conversation about salvation, eternity, and eternal life. It’s heartbreaking, and all you can do is present Christ to them, hoping that the seed you plant will take root and they will come to their senses.

Someone who is lost and who knows they are lost yet is indifferent about the prospect cannot be reasoned with or persuaded by natural means. When their heart is stirred, it is supernatural, something done by the Holy Spirit, for it must compel them to humble themselves, repent, and seek salvation.

The second is men affirming that they are saved, believing they are saved while utterly lost. The world is full of such individuals, people who will stand before Christ one day, reminding Him of all the things they did in His name and Jesus informing them that He never knew them.

Jesus didn’t say that to scare folks. He didn’t say it to cause anyone undue stress or sleepless nights. Jesus said it because it would be a reality. It will be true. It will happen just as He said it will.

John 7:21-23, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’”

Just so we’re clear, people with more power than the modern-day church will be turned away and commanded to depart from before Christ. Even though they’d prophesied, cast out demons, and done many wonders, they failed to do the will of God and continued to practice lawlessness.

If you don’t like wriggly things, you might want to turn away. We’re about to open a can of worms because everyone else seems to be ignoring it or giving it a wide berth. But why would you want to do such a thing? Why not let sleeping dogs lie and tell stories about Vlad the Impaler or something? Because there are people who are confident that they are saved, and they are not, and it’s hard to wash blood off your hands. I can’t even rub garlic powder into a chicken breast with my bare hands. It makes me squeamish.

For anyone trying to create a carve-out for any movement or person, past or present, insisting that they were mightily used of the Lord even though they practiced lawlessness and did not do the will of the Father, go back and read those two verses very carefully.

Just because someone prophecies, casts out demons, or does wonders, it does not mean that their demonstrable lawlessness is somehow sanctioned, excused, or justified by God. It likewise does not mean that on the day of judgment, their lawlessness and rebellion will be overlooked, and they will get a pass for their unrepented misconduct.

It’s one of those straw man arguments that drives me up a wall and one I hear more often with each passing day. But so and so divorced his wife, married his secretary, and look at the mighty wonders he is doing. It must be okay in the sight of God. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be doing all the wonders.

That’s not what the Bible says. Yes, I know, back to the Bible; sorry to disappoint those who think their opinion supersedes it.

It’s also how some men justify habitual, protracted, and ongoing lawlessness. Because they can keep prophesying or doing wonders, or even casting out demons, they talk themselves into believing that God thinks they’re so special, He’ll pretend as though they weren’t doing wrong.

God is not like man. Men will often excuse something their own nation does that they condemn in other nations who do it. There are plenty of examples, but the point is that God will not excuse sin in His house while condemning those of the world for it.

Fair warning: it will get to the point of being ludicrous, in your face, and blatantly obvious, and people will still attempt to justify it and embrace it. Make of that what you will, but the point is this: The Bible says a good tree produces good fruit, and a corrupt tree produces evil fruit. It doesn’t say the corrupt tree doesn’t produce any fruit at all. What the Bible makes clear, however, is that a corrupt tree cannot produce good fruit.

Perhaps, at some point, we’ll learn the difference between biblical and judgmental. One can hope, anyway. I’m not judging anybody, that’s not my intent, but I’m not about to say that due to changing weather patterns, corrupt trees are now producing some mighty tasty fruit.

But what about all the high-profile spiritual leaders and influential individuals endorsing this or that person? That’s on them. They will have to contend with the fallout and answer before an omniscient God. If I’d planned on selling out for clout, I would have done it long enough ago that I could have lived my best life for a couple of decades before spit-roasting for eternity. I’m too close to the finish line to consider it at this point.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.