The Sonshine posts by Pastor Walter Olsen

A Plea For Forgiveness

The Sonshine

By Walter Olsen

 

A Plea For Forgiveness      September 2021

Introduction

The title, A Plea For Forgiveness, is taken from the heading of Psalm 51 in the King James Bible. I use it here because it adequately summarizes the truth of the chapter. Further, it speaks of the great need of humanity today.

 

Psalm 51 is King David’s plea to God after the acknowledgment of his  sin with Bathsheba. His sin brought shame and a sense of separation from God. Thankfully, he was able to reestablish his fellowship and walk with God.   This truth is so much needed today in the lives of all believers as we become convicted of our sins and see them for what they really are in the sight of God.

 

The purpose of this article is to walk through Psalm 51:1-7 and make some needed applications to our own lives including the following:

 

Permit Even This

The Sonshine by Walter Olsen     August 2021

Permit Even This

Introduction

When Jesus faced His crucifixion on the cross, there were those who saw the injustice of it and sought to do something about it. They did it out of love and regard for the Lord and it seemed so right to do.  The Biblical account reads as follows, “When they which were about Him saw what would follow, they said unto Him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword? And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear. And Jesus answered and said, ‘Suffer ye thus far...’” (Luke 22:49-51). Alternative readings are of the phrase, “Suffer ye this far”  are “Permit even this” or “Permit them to go so far.” They all carry the same idea. The Lord knew the purpose of the cross and, in spite of the forthcoming suffering, He accepted it knowing that it was the will of His Father. Indeed, Jesus said to the disciples, “My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to finish His work” (Jn. 4:34).

 

Of course, Jesus faced the greatest challenge any one could possibly face. No other man will face an equal challenge. He faced the personal and physical suffering in His body and also the wrath of the Father as He placed upon Him the enormous guilt of all of our sins.

 

Truth for the Times

The Sonshine
June – July 2021
by Walter Olsen

Introduction

All of the Word of God is profitable for all times. There is no time when the truth of God is not profitable and pertinent. However, there are times when portions of God’s truth are especially pertinent to a given situation and time. When one faces death, there are portions of God’s Word that especially apply. All of us are now facing new and difficult times. We don’t know what an hour or day will bring and we ponder as how to face or respond to the challenges we are faced with. Often, we appeal to our own understanding which is often little more than our own opinions about a given matter. Of course, God has given to us common sense with which to make decisions, but under His direction and leading. Too often, though, we leave God out of our thoughts about how to face a given crisis.

The purpose of this article is to consider some things that should guide all of us as believers as we seek to cope with the challenges before us. We don’t have to try to get through the future on our own!

When in the Wilderness

The Sonshine
May 2021
by Walter Olsen

Introduction

When I think of the wilderness, I think of the time when I was about four years old picking raspberries with my mother in a wooded area I was not familiar with. Somehow, I got separated from her and was lost in the maze of trees and brush. It was a fearful experience! I didn’t know where I was nor did I know how to get out to find my way home. All I could do was to call for my mother. Thankfully, she was not far away and found me easily. I was greatly relieved. The woods we were in was not that far away from home nor was it all that big, but to me, at that age, it was awesome.

In our Christian lives, do we not sometimes get lost in the confusion and bustle of the world about us? It is easy to become spiritually disoriented and so lose our way. The result is, we become fearful and sometimes make some serious mistakes. We need a Shepherd in our Christian lives, and, thankfully, we have One!

The nation of Israel had a Shepherd who led them faithfully and safely through the wilderness. In the great Psalm of giving thanks to the Lord, the Psalmist gave thanks, “To Him which led His people through the wilderness” (Psa. 136:16). When we are lost in the wilderness, there is nothing more important than one who can lead us and show us the way out.

Finding Our Way

The Sonshine
April 2021
by  Walter Olsen

Introduction

Most of us would agree that we are living in very confusing times. Many don’t know where to turn for direction and comfort. As a result, many struggle along in confusion not knowing where they are going or what will happen to them. Of course, this is true for everyone in a general way. We don’t know what a day will bring forth for any of us. Still, there are things we can know that will give us Godly direction and comfort. The things I am referring to are the various truths that are revealed to us in God’s Word, the Bible.

The following are some things that will help us find our way in the difficult times we live in. Actually, they are essential if we would know God’s peace and provision in any time. So, what are some of the things we need to know for ourselves?

The way of salvation. Of course, the truth of the Bible must be acknowledged here. So many have imagined their own way of salvation but, if persisted in, will lead to their spiritual ruin. The salvation the Bible teaches includes  the following:

Bearing the Burdens of Others

The Sonshine
March 2021
by Walter Olsen

Introduction

Life is filled with many challenges for all of us, including believers. No one is exempt from the effects of the fall in the Garden of Eden. Everyone, including each of us, is burdened with some special care or burden. Granted, sometimes life seems easy and carefree and we appreciate those times. Still, as believers grow in the Lord, they are made more aware of the special needs in  their own lives.

This paper, though, is about seeing and caring for the special needs of others. Christians are not to live their lives independent of the needs of those about them. The Apostle Paul reminded the Galatians, “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal. 6:2). He further  admonished, “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Gal. 6:10). Jesus was very compassionate of the needs of others and, as believers, we should be also. 

Broken Things

The Sonshine
Walter Olsen
February 2021 

Introduction

We are all familiar with things being broken. Sometimes we drop things and they break. Sometimes things break because of wear and tear. Other times, what breaks are not  physical things, but things such as relationships, health, and employment. Broken things are a part of everyone’s life.

Some broken things can be repaired, others cannot. I dropped a beautiful glass vase one time and there was no way it could be repaired! I doubt if I even found all the pieces!

We  generally believe that things not broken are good, useful, and enjoyable. In the physical world, that is generally true. We spend lots of money sometimes to bring things back to normal, to a place of being useful to us. Think of the money we spend on cars and various household items.

 Sometimes we think that the things we own, such as our own abilities and talents define our lives and thus we give so much attention to these things. We desperately want to be well thought of! In a way they do define one’s life, but a life that is basically earth bound.

Knowing the Times

The Sonshine
by Walter Olsen
January 2021

Introduction

For this edition of The Sonshine, I would like to review some things I have spoken of earlier. They are things that are coming more and more into focus as the days pass. They are things Christians need to give attention to in order to properly represent the truth of the Bible and to find security for their own souls.They are things that, if we are wise, we will be aware of and do our best, when and where possible,  to make some preparation for.  These things are alarming, especially if one does not know the Lord as Savior. If one has studied the Bible, however, these things coming to pass today are not really a surprise. We know that eventually these things would come to fruition.

We need to make a distinction , though, before we begin to enumerate some of these things. If one is a believer, he or she may be acquainted with the promise of the Lord’s return. However, many are not familiar with the truth of the rapture of the church. Remember, the church includes all people saved between the beginning of the church at Pentecost and the time when the Lord comes in the air for His own, that is, the rapture or catching away of the church. This is the time when the Lord returns in the air to receive His own unto Himself. This truth is found in such places as Jn. 14:1-6;  I Cor. 15:51-57; I Thess. 4:13-18; and II Thess. 2:1-12. 

Still Thankful?

The Sonshine
November 2020
by Walter Olsen

Introduction

As the world moves on to ever increasing ungodliness and Christians face the real prospect of persecution and suffering, can we still be thankful? Of course, we don’t know what a month or day will hold for us, but we see the obvious direction the world is going. Believers in many parts of the world are being tortured and put to death. In our country, the Christian message is being sidelined and ridiculed. Believers are being marginalized because they believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the One who lived a sinless life, was crucified for our sins, and was raised again from the dead. The world despises this message because it does not fit their scheme for the world.

The goal of the world system is a one world government, a one world economy, and a one world religion. It is a world under the total control of the elite with no room for God. Thus, gospel preaching churches and believers must be silenced, sometimes by persecution or even put to death. Jesus said to the church of Smyrna “Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried...be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life” (Rev. 2:10).

How Do We know If We Are Growing in the Lord?

The Sonshine
Walter Olsen
October 2020 

Introduction

We have the truth of the Bible, but we sometimes wonder about our own walk with God. As believers, we often have many questions about Is it what it should be, is our life really pleasing to Him? How do we really know if we are growing in the Lord? Maybe we have all had the experience of traveling on the wrong road, a road that takes us to a place we don’t want to go to. Sadly, many believers have not yet found the right spiritual road to travel on. They are saved, but are still in the dark as to the true way of light.

Such a life is really not a life of satisfaction, of true blessing, or of ministry to the needs of others. We may know what the Bible says about our walk with God, but as we look at our lives, see so many inconsistencies. We can identify with Paul who said, “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I” (Rom. 7:15). The result is, we often feel defeated and discouraged. We may become indifferent to the Lord and His Word and even going to church. 

The question, then, is, how can I know that I am walking in harmony and fellowship with God? In this article I would like to suggest a few things that are in evidence in the life of one who is truly and consistently walking with God.