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Since 2016, I have studiously avoided partisan commentary on social media. I still think this is the way to go because neither political party or their leaders deserve unquestioned loyalty.
Still, I’ve made comments about political developments, trying to point to first principles or time-tested ideals or the essentials of a healthy constitutional republic, not the least of which includes the First Amendment. This was especially the case during the pandemic when I watched overweening government and Big Tech, Big Media take steps I never thought I’d see in this country, undermining one fundamental American liberty after another in the name of security, safety, and truth be told, power. It's still happening.
I’ve made references from time to time to the Left or leftists or progressives or secular progressives, but even here I’ve tried not to make my comments a screed about “those people,” attempting to acknowledge the plank in my eye or conservatives’ eyes, even as I rail on the speck in the Lefts’ eyes.
I’m writing this now, though, to say I no longer find this attempt at neutrality tenable. Or put another way, neutrality is no longer possible, or advisable or wise. The stakes are too high. We are fighting a spiritual battle, one that politics per se cannot fix.
The ideological shift, worldview (values) battles, and outright revolutionary rejection propagated by elites in media, politics, business, entertainment, even sports and religion—at warp speed—is turning this country upside down. And I sincerely believe the most basic human rights enshrined in the founding documents of this country and Western Civilization generally are under severe attack. So is Judeo-Christian morality, religion, and certainly the Bible itself.
So, I no longer can remain neutral. Lord willing, I intend to speak specifically, to give an answer to everyone who asks, to give the reason for the hope that I have, hopefully with gentleness and respect.
Not classical liberals, but the secular progressive left is not simply offering political alternatives. It is promoting lies, and at this I can no longer wink.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

We live today in what might be called a time of “layered crises,” one on top of the other our lives are stressed by trials and threats, big and small, national and personal, so the question becomes, how should we then live/

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #45 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.

Life happens, and since we live in a fallen world tainted by the curse of sin and the sin of our own hearts, this means crises happen – trials, emergencies, tragedies, suffering – both national and personal.

It could be called a time of “layered crises,” one on top of the other. While the 20th Century saw world wars and the Great Depression, the 21St Century has brought us: 9-11, Katrina, a global pandemic, an increase in refugees and immigration that’s produced humanitarian challenges in countries throughout the Middle East and the West. 

In large part due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, we now have something called “food insecurity,” an inability to get sufficient quantities of grain that in turn yields hunger and possibly starvation, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa. Human trafficking and slavery. Wars in Yemen and Syria, raging inflation, “Acts of God” as the insurance industry calls them, earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, more, violence, ad infinitum.  

On a personal level, we face sudden illness or difficult prognoses re diseases like cancer, accidents and tragedies including loss of loved ones, job loss, financial duress, divorce and broken families, loss of hope, fear, paralyzing depression, and what’s now being called a “public mental health crisis,” especially among youth.

Meanwhile, the Scripture is replete with verses providing us with the promise of protection, stability, and hope:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” Phil. 4:4-7

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Rom. 8:28

“In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Rom 8: 37-39

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way.” Psalm 45:8

A crisis is an emergency that is “unexpected, disruptive, a single event or multiple occurrences, and could lead to either positive or negative results.” It can be attributed to humans or nature, and it is an external uncontrolled force, unpredictable. 

So, during our lives we will live through national/international crises that may or may not affect us directly, and we most certainly will live through our own personal trials or crises. If you haven’t yet experienced a crisis in your life, you just haven’t yet lived long enough.

God is aware of our trials and sufferings. God is there to help us, even to walking through the valley of the shadow of death (Ps. 23).

I remember a time when I faced the most serious crisis that had yet come my way. 

For some reason, my wife was gone over a weekend during which I wrestled with this, and I remember being so stressed that my stomach hurt, and I literally bent double under the strain.

At that point, I began reading the book of Psalms. I confess that up to that point in my life I had wondered about the shepherd king David, author of the Psalms, like “What’s wrong with this guy? He always seems to be whining, sort of crying out to the Lord, not able to deal with his problems.”

Well, now that I had hit the wall, I understood. For the first time in my life, I felt like David. I could not handle my own problems, and I knew it.

So back to the Psalms. I read, and I read, and I read some more. Ultimately, I read the entire book through three times in about a month. I found phrases repeated over and over, like God’s “unfailing love.” I later learned that in the NIV, the phrase God’s “unfailing love” is cited 32 times in Psalms.This phrase said to me that God knew exactly what I was experiencing, and guess what, I was still amid his “unfailing love.”

Another repetitive phrase in the Psalms was various versions of “God’s strong right arm” or “God’s right hand.” This conveyed to me God’s ability to deal with my problems and, frankly, to deal with me. 

Finally, I found various expressions of the phrase, “Let your face shine upon me.”

David wanted God’s favor, and he asked God to give this to him in the wonderfully poetic words of “make your face to shine upon me.”

What I learned facing that crisis is this,

  • God was entirely aware of my concerns,
  • The Lord was still there and capable of administering the crisis according to his will and my good,
  • And that I could not work through the problem in my own strength.

I learned to pray, “Lord I can’t handle this. I give it all to you and trust you to work through me as you wish.” I learned this is a wonderful prayer of release. It is personally liberating and professionally energizing. I was still responsible to work as unto the Lord, but the results, the outcome belonged to him.

I have prayed this prayer a few times since, and I recommend it to you. It is not weakness, no more than David was “weak.” It is realistic, wise, and healing.

Today, as America experiences daily crises, brought to us 24/7 on media and social media, older adults are saying they don’t recognize their own country, and many are turning to alcohol and opioids. Meanwhile, young people are suffering from rash anxiety and a skyrocketing mental health crisis.

Sadly, most of the adults and nearly all the youth do not know the Word of God, do not understand theology, do not comprehend God’s promises or his sovereignty, so they have nothing to fall back on. They have no failsafe, no backstop, no lifeline. Thus, their circumstances, life itself, overwhelms them and we get addictions, suicides, emotional PTSD.

How should Christians, then, speak into this cultural moment? How can we be a witness to peace and hope?

Several things we can do:

  • We can demonstrate that how we respond to crises is a choice. 
  • By how we live our lives, trusting God, we can demonstrate that circumstances do notdetermine our character or our faith, even if they often reveal them. 
  • We can illustrate that one’s response to any crisis is an opportunity.
  • Via the capital C Church, the Body of Christ, we can show a caring God.

Crises are challenging, perhaps threatening, but God can use them to bring people together.

What then should we do amid crises?

  • Pray, seek God’s face.
  • Read the Psalms.
  • Choose Resilience, Optimism.
  • Remember, every crisis ends – “This too shall pass.” 
  • Trust the Sovereign God.

Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

Have you heard that men can now have babies? I know. It surprised me too, but it’s a new truth in this Orwellian age.

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #44 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.

Truth is now under attack. Satan, the father of lies, has America in his crosshairs (Jn 8:44), and he is using contemporary philosophies, “isms” if you will, to lead people to suppress the truth in wickedness (Rom. 1:18).

As was said in the days of Isaiah, “truth is nowhere to be found” (Is. 59:15), or in the days of Jeremiah, “truth has perished; it has vanished from their lips” (Jer. 7:28), or the days of Daniel, “truth was thrown to the ground” (Dan. 8:12).

The attack shows up in references to “your truth” and “my truth” or “she has to live by her truth,” or “no one should force their truth on someone else.”

But you say, “It’s common sense.” Not anymore. You say, “It’s obvious.” Not anymore. Or you say, “Wait, it’s part of nature and natural law.” Not anymore. No, truth is no longer alignment with divine revelation and the evidence of creation. Truth is whatever we want it to be.

Truth under attack is apparent in a host of irrational statements our culture is now expected to accept as fact. Have you heard these amazing new “truths”?

  1. What’s in a womb is not a baby, just a fetus, not human unless it is wanted, or at least until it is born, and then it may still be at risk in the minds of those who believe a woman and a doctor should be able to decide whether the newborn should live.
  2. Biological sex at birth is not immutablebut is socially determined, thus boys can identify as, then transition to become girls, while girls can identify as, then transition to become boys.
  3. Men can become pregnant and have babies, hence we no longer have mothers but “birthing persons.”
  4. Abortion does not involve a baby human being but rather is about a woman’s control over her own body, is essential to reproductive health, and is a human right.
  5. Crime and violence are not lawlessness, just the poor and other victims of white privilege doing what’s only fair.
  6. “Gender is no more regarded as a binary concept where one can either be a male or a female. It has emerged as a continuum or spectrum where one can identify themselves as any of the gender identities. The term gender identity means how a person identifies themselves concerning their gender. It may be regardless of their anatomy or genetics…The idea is to make everyone feel comfortable in their skin irrespective of what gender they wereassigned at birth.” That was a quote. Notice the last phrase, “assigned at birth,” which reinforces the idea that someone arbitrarily labeled the baby a boy or girl, rather than sex being a biological given.
  7. Same-sex marriage is normal.
  8. Each person is determined by skin color, sexual orientation, or gender.

Those of us who disagree with these new “prevailing acceptable narratives” can now be ostracized on social media, lose employment, have reputations destroyed, or otherwise be “cancelled.”

People who oppose abortion are now labeled “abortion extremists,” “anti-woman,” and a threat to freedom.

People who believe biology matters, and who disagree that a person can decide to change sex in order to participate in sports or frequent bathrooms designed for the opposite sex, are accused of bigotry and hatred.

Nor is religion any longer accorded an honored space. Revisionists reinterpret history claiming religion is a greater source of human violence than secularism. 

No matter that this is upside down. The murderous record of 20th Century secular Nazi and Communist regimes alone puts the lie to this supposedly new “truth.”

In America today, Judeo-Christian values drawn from the Bible are being described as a means of preserving white patriarchy and white supremacy. This, too, is a lie.

Pedophiles, who once were called perverted, are now being described as simply “minor attracted persons.” Drag queens reading to grade school children is said to be about diversity and inclusion, not about normalizing twisted and degraded sexuality.

The attack on truth took on new urgency in the 1960s with the emergence of something called “moral relativism,” the idea that there are no absolute, objectively definable, and knowable truths. Everything is relative. Thus, nothing can be said to be better, right vs wrong, more beautiful, correct. Truth is unknowable.

In his writings in the 1970s and to his death in 1984, Christian philosopher Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer recognized this cultural threat when he coined the phrase “true truth.” From a Christian perspective, this phrase is redundant, but Schaeffer found it necessary to convey what he meant by truth, real objective truth, in an age given to relativizing all statements.

In the early 21st Century, human feelings now matter more than objective reality, and if you say you disagree with a person, thus hurting their feelings, you are guilty of stomping upon their human rights. 

In a culture that no longer believes in truth, a culture that has repeatedly rejected moral absolutes, to say you believe something is true is grating to the ear, judgmental, bigoted, offensive, and even irrational or crazy. 

But Schaeffer reminded us, “Truth carries with it confrontation. Truth demands confrontation; loving confrontation, but confrontation nevertheless.” Truth, true truth, challenges error, falsehood, lies.

To “buy the truth and do not sell it,” as it says in Proverbs (23:23), can come with a price. To those who do not want to hear, those who are in the language of the Old King James “willingly ignorant” (2 Pet. 3:5), truth is the enemy. You who hold and express the truth are the enemy. If we state truth, as we should, we will face opposition, ridicule, maybe rejection and hurt from our own family and friends.

But the price of not holding fast to the truth and of not speaking the truth in love is enormously high. 

If there is no truth, there are no inalienable human rights, no real freedom. If there is no truth, there is no trust because one can never be sure or certain. We’re left with deceit, pain, disillusionment.

People wonder, “What’s happening to America? It seems like we’ve gone nuts, that nothing is valued, not patriotism, not law and order, not decency. It’s like we’re a different country.”

Well, we are a different country, at least in the sense that great swaths of the population now embrace ideas and values, an entire worldview, that would be foreign even to the criminal element a generation ago.

The idea there is no truth, nothing trustworthy, not even God for many people, undermines everything else we experience. And this attack on truth is being propagated from the White House and the U.S. Congress, state capitals, courtrooms, the ivy halls of academia from kindergarten to graduate school, corporate messaging, sports, entertainment, and the arts.

Scripture says, “When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Ps. 11:3). What do we do? We speak truth. In an age of untruth, of attack on truth, our greatest testimony is to be people of truth, to live truthfully, to speak truthfully.

In Jesus’s prayer of John 17, he said, “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world” (Jn 17:17-18).

We are to be in the world but not of the world even as we go into the world.

And we are to speak truth. We will face opposition. We may be harassed or in some way hampered. But God is God. He cannot be canceled. His truth remains forever.

Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

If you’ve lived very long as an adult, you’ve probably incurred some personal debt, but how much debt, and is it good or bad debt? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #43 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.

Debt is now commonplace in contemporary postmodern culture. Nearly everyone is in some way engaged in some form of debt.

There was a time, though, before the 1960s, when debt, especially living beyond ones means, was considered morally questionable or at least unwise. Politicians worked to balance budgets. Individuals and families labored to avoid bad debt and get out of debt. 

Now, it seems, American culture not only tolerates but embraces debt. We think we are entitled to live the good life, i.e., what we can’t afford as presented to us by online influencers, the beautiful people, and celebrities. We want to be like them. We want affluence and the materialistic stuff that goes with it. So, charge it.

Personal credit cards are maxed out. In 2022, there are 537 million credit card accounts in the US, up 6% or 32 million, since 2021. Just before the pandemic in 2020, total credit card debt reached $893 billion, but it climbed to $71 billion in 2021. Meanwhile, average credit card interest rates are a usurious 16.59%.

Eighty percent of Americans have consumer debt, amounting to $14.6 trillion in personal debt. In 2021, the average American has $90,460 in debt according to CNBC.

Conservative financial guru David Ramsey is very opposed to the idea of owing money to a lender in any shape or form. Not only does he think consumers should ditch credit cards and pay for purchases in cash, he believes it's ideal to purchase a car outright rather than secure an auto loan. Ramsey recently tweeted that the only good debt is debt that is PAID OFF. 

Ramsey is strict when it comes to debt. He’s not necessarily wrong, just difficult for some to reach this level, but if they can, more power to them. I know at least three families who say Ramsey’s counsel helped them early in their marriages and is responsible for their financial stability now.

Most financial advisors, though, consider mortgages good debt because they feature reasonable interest rates, and because they mean one owns an asset, equity. Auto loans might be considered good debt. While cars don't tend to appreciate, they do make it possible for people to drive to work and earn a living.

That’s a look at the micro level – personal debt. Now let’s look at the macro level – national debt.

As of January 2022, the US National Debt stands at $30 trillion plus for the first time ever. If you want to scare yourself, go to and look at the US National Debt Clock. The digital display moves faster than you can count the dollars aloud. On the same page, the US Gross Domestic Product logs at $24,813T plus and climbing rapidly. The US total debt is over $92,229T, and it too was increasing before my eyes faster than I could count or comprehend.  

“Debt held by the public as a share of GDP peaked just after World War II (113% of GDP in 1945) but then fell over the following 35 years. In recent decades, aging demographics and rising healthcare costs have led to concern about the long-term sustainability of the federal government's fiscal policies… 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government spent trillions in virus aid and economic relief…At the end of 2020, debt held by the public was approximately 99.3% of GDP, and approximately 37% of this public debt was owned by foreigners.” It’s called external debt. The United States has the largest external debt in the world.

Neither Democrats or Republicans can claim to be great budget managers who keep the national debt at some manageable level.

  • $10.6 trillion when Barack Obama took over on January 20, 2009.
  • $19.9 trillion when Trump took over on January 20, 2017.
  • $ 27.8 trillion when Biden took over on January 20, 2021.

As a culture, the American people have become profligate. That’s p-r-o-f-l-i-g-a-t-e. Profligate. It means “given to or characterized by licentiousness or dissipation, morally wrong,” or “given to or characterized by reckless waste; wildly extravagant” or “spending money or using something in a way that wastes it and is not wise.”

Postmodern Americans seem to want their cake and eat it too. They want, regardless of the cost to themselves, their nation’s wellbeing, or their progeny.

But what we do with money, individually and as a society, is a profound moral issue. Jesus made it clear that whatever our station, since God owns everything, we are merely stewards. Thus, we are accountable to God for how we manage our assets.

Scripture never says debt is a sinbut it does strongly state that debt is dangerous: “The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. (Prov. 22:7).

Remember that 37% of US debt that is currently held by foreign interests? It’s not a comforting thought.

In a sermon entitled, “The Use of Money,” delivered in 1789, great early American preacher John Wesley said, “Earn all you can. Save all you can. Give all you can.” It’s difficult to do this if we go into irresponsible levels of debt.

Scripture also states that one is responsible for one’s debts: “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another” (Rom. 13:8). “The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously” (Ps 37:21).

Scripture indicates we are each blessed by God with time, talent, and treasure, and we are accountable to him for the stewardship of our livelihood that makes it possible for us to care for our families. The Bible is, after all, the source of the famed Protestant Work Ethic that helped propel the development of Western Civilization.

Recently, President Biden announced an extensive student loan “forgiveness” program. The idea is that somehow letting selected students out of their financial obligations would be a good thing for them. 

But unless you are the one who extended the funds and hold the I.O.U., forgiving debt does not make it go away. In the case of the student loan “forgiveness,” it simply transfers the debt to the American taxpayer, including those who scrimped and sacrificed to pay off their own loans. The student loan “forgiveness,” therefore, can only be seen for what it is, a ploy to buy votes, a grossly inequitable governmental action, and a disincentive to pay off loans for those who go into debt in the future.

Student loans are generally among the lowest interest rates. When I was in graduate school in 1978-1982, we took out two loans because I wanted to march right through the program and get the degrees, rather than stop out for a time to save for the next semester. This worked for us, but for the next ten years we paid $68 per month to take care of our obligations. Because student loan rates are typically lower, than for example financing a car, whenever we had funds to add to our payments, we put this into the car, not the student loan. Consequently, to pay it off took the full ten years. I remember when my wife and I celebrated the final payment.

When we load up on debt, personally or nationally, we mortgage our children’s and our grandchildren’s futures. This is immoral.

Knowingly incurring debt beyond our means, personal or national, is a matter of want more than need. It allows our desires to rule our hearts and our actions, and somehow, we convince ourselves we will never have to pay the piper.

But the believer who lives “Christianly” remembers scripture: “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you’” (Heb 13:5).


Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

Does the sudden passing of a celebrity sometimes get your attention, make you think about the afterlife? Do the comments of people in the entertainment business give you much hope about where they will be or where you will be in the afterlife?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #42 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.



A car crash August 5, 2022, in Los Angeles and the horrific fire that resulted caused the death August 11 of actress Anne Heche at age 53. She lapsed into a coma while being rescued by emergency first responders and never regained consciousness, later being declared legally dead due severe anoxic brain injury from smoke inhalation and other thermal injuries.

The tragedy was magnified when preliminary blood tests revealed the presence of drugs in Heche's system. In other words, her erratic high-speed driving, collision with another garage, and finally, a blast off the road some 30 feet into a house, may not have occurred if she had not been under the influence.

My point here is not to pile on Anne Heche for using cocaine and maybe fentanyl, though I know this was not good, justifiable, or safe. She apparently had emotional struggles and, sadly, may have turned to drugs to help ease this pain.

My point here is rather to think about what her 20-year-old son said in response to his mother’s passing.

Homer Laffoon posted this: “My brother Atlas and I lost our Mom. After six days of almost unbelievable emotional swings, I am left with a deep, wordless sadness. Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom."

In no way am I making fun or otherwise throwing rocks at this young man’s comment out of his grief. In fact, I find his sentiments particularly sad. 

Not only did he lose his mother, he possesses only a vague sense of where she might be or if there is anything out there at all. He simply says he hopes she is free of pain, and he “imagines” her eternal freedom. But he does not know. He expressed no real confidence. I feel for him and his brother.

It brings to mind a few personal experiences. While I was in graduate school at the University of Cincinnati, a coworker in the campus research lab where we were employed, had gone north to Michigan with his wife for a winter ski outing. Tragically, on the way home they hit an ice patch and he was killed in a head-on collision. His wife survived but was hurt badly. Several of my colleagues and I attended the funeral in a Greek Orthodox Church. This proved to be without question the most uncomfortable experience I had had up to then and perhaps since, and for a few colleagues too who commented later.  The service was nothing but utter anguish, no words of solace or hope, no sense of peace or meeting again someday, nothing from the priest about where my friend might be in the afterlife. Frankly, my colleagues and I could not wait to get out of there. It was dreadful.

A few years later, my family lived next to an older couple. This church-going family suddenly lost their son to drugs and a wild lifestyle. I remember standing on the gentleman’s patio expressing my condolences when he told me about how the chimes on his back porch had rung that morning and he felt this was his son sending a message that he was alright. Out of compassion for his grief, I did not disagree outright with what I thought was a faulty, pagan grasp for emotional peace, but I did talk to him about what the Scripture says about the afterlife. What amazed me was not only the man’s superstitious statement but that it came from a man that was a relatively faithful attendee at a nearby Presbyterian Church.

In later years still, in West Michigan where I live now, I attended the funeral of the son of a notable businessman I knew. The son was 40-something and had committed suicide with a belt in his own garage. His wife found him. The funeral was held in what the leading self-avowed theologically liberal church in the area, Fountain Street Church in Grand Rapids. While in its early days this church had been a beacon for biblical truth, certain pastors led it away from the Word and by the time this funeral took place, there was little evidence in the program that anyone acting in an official capacity believed the Bible. 

Most notably, a friend of the deceased offered a short eulogy. The man was deeply broken up and, understandably, barely got through his comments. Primarily, and I think distressingly, he said that his friend had loved hawks and that that day on the way to the funeral the speaker had seen a hawk flying high above. He said he knew that this was his deceased friend telling him he was OK. 

Again, like the back porch chimes, this sentimental thought is gut-wrenching in its grief and tearful leap of faith to pagan ideas, trying to find some sense of peace in the face of tragic, avoidable death. The pastor who took the podium thereafter never once offered words of hope to the family and did not share a Christian perspective on what was taking place, only an impotent pep talk.

Like for Anne Heche’s son Homer, I feel profoundly for these people. Their heartsore pain is real. I do not make light of them. Indeed, I am moved by the hopelessness of their positions. Their forlorn, groundless commentary offers them little more than the typical response oft-heard in media about people “sending our thoughts and prayers,” a religious-sounding phrase that usually doesn’t mean much other than that people are trying to express respect.

Contrast this with the passing of my father at age 86 in April 2018. In the providence of God, I was able to get home a couple of days before from a trip to the Middle East with SAT-7, so I was with my mother in Ohio when she came out to the living room saying, “I think Dad has passed.” We both then entered their bedroom where I quickly came to the same conclusion as Mom, Dad was no longer with us. I later observed at Dad’s funeral, if each of us could choose how we depart this earth, wouldn’t most of us like the idea of peacefully falling asleep in our own bedroom?

I will be forever grateful to the Lord that I was there, for Mom but also for me. We were grieved, of course, because there was a loss. Dad was no longer with us. But I cannot imagine that experience without the confidence of knowing Dad knew the Lord and therefore we knew exactly where Dad was.

In the Old King James version, the Scripture’s promise about the homegoing of one of his saints, says, “Absent from the body, present with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8).

I like to remember this biblical theology. While there is hurt because there is a separation, still, we do not grieve as others grieve. We know that our loved one is not “gone,” but simply “absent,” now more alive than ever, now not just “resting in peace” but “rejoicing in peace.” 

So, while Mom and our family miss Dad, we know he is well, and we will see him again one day. This is a fantastic Christian certainty—no ambiguity—just truth and an incredible source of peace and joy.

But when celebrities pass, you sometimes hear vacuous statements like what certain entertainers observed when Frank Sinatra died, that “heaven will be rockin’ tonight,” supposedly as Frank joined with other members of the infamous Rat Pack. It sounds like bravado, and it is. But it masks their fear and uncertainty.

People like to believe that life begins by chance. It’s evolutionary, without God or at least without his involvement, thus in life they acknowledge no responsibility, no accountability. So in this view they can do what’s right in their own eyes. Then sooner than they’d wish, they face their own mortality. Life comes to an end.

These same people who believe life begins by chance do not want to think that life ends by chance. No, that would mean their life had no meaning, that they have no meaning. As human beings, they understandably want to believe they possess significance. So, they create a variety of perspectives on the afterlife, most of which are grounded upon works-based assumptions that they have earned their way to heaven or some expression of “eternal freedom.”

But none of this is what the Word of God says. The Bible says, in the beginning God created, which includes human beings. It says we possess eternal significance because of our divine creation. It says we are blessed by God, given talents and time by God, and are accountable to him for how we use them. It also says that we, all of us, are born in sin, that we are not righteous, and that we cannot earn our salvation, which is offered to us by a loving, forgiving God by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross and in the resurrection (Rom. 3:21-28, Gal. 2:16). Sin condemns us and salvation cannot be earned. It is a free gift for all that embrace it (Rom. 6:23, Eph. 2:8-9). This is the Gospel, the Good News (John 3:16, 5:24; Rom. 8:1).

Finally, the Bible makes it clear that we can have an assurance of the afterlife.

“And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. 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” (1 John 5:11-13).

For those who have trusted in Christ as their Savior, the Word says that someday Jesus will return for the Resurrection of those saints that have passed, then the Rapture of the living saints. “And so we will be with the Lordforever. Therefore encourage one another with these words” (1 Thess. 4:13-18).

I do not know where Anne Heche is today, but I know her spirit lives. Her childhood was troubled, but she had a religious mother, so I pray that somewhere in Anne’s life she accepted Christ as her Savior. Have you?


Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

Have you thought much about getting older? Your answer probably depends upon your age now. Younger, not so much? Older, absolutely. Real question is, what should characterize us as we age?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #41 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.

I’m getting older and so are you. There, I said it. The cat’s out of the bag…sort of.   

We all know this, of course. I mean, who doesn’t know they’re getting older? Kids like to remind us, “I’m 8 years old and next week I’m going to be 9.” They’re proud of the process. It’s like an achievement. But for the rest us, the ones who’ve “reached a certain age,” we’re not so enamored about what birthdays imply. No one, but retirement homes and life insurance agents, seem to want to talk about it.     

Meanwhile, the “Fountain of Youth” offered by the cosmetics industry notwithstanding, aging is inevitable, inexorable, and irresistible. And youth is irretrievable.      

Now there is one alternative to aging. Not aging, which comes with its partner, death. Some wag once said, “Nothing’s certain but death and taxes.” Yes, that’s true on both counts, which is why one joke common among elderly folks is “I’m glad to be here. Hey, I’m glad to be anywhere.” Older people love that joke. 

We know “people are destined to die once,” (Hebrews 9:27), but death doesn’t claim everyone early. Aging is the “better alternative.”

Aging comes to us all, great and small. So, the question is not will we age but how will we age?

When someone says, “My, she’s aging gracefully,” mostly what’s being said is that she is aging well physically. In other words, she looks pretty good. Nothing wrong with that, though some people wryly note that aging gracefully is more about gravity than grace.   

Yet there are a few things we can do to reinforce our prospects of aging gracefully.     

One of my mentors once said, “Are you taking care of yourself? You know, whatever you do for the Lord you do in a body, so if you burn out your body you can’t keep serving the Lord.” That was Dr. Wilbert W. Welch, long-time Chancellor of Cornerstone University, who at the time was well into his 80s. When a gentleman of this age gives you advice on how to take care of yourself you’ve got to admit his words carry a lot of credibility. He lived, by the way, into his mid 90s.   

Aging gracefully seems to be what most people, and certainly Madison Avenue, are worrying about. To an extent, I have no problem with this. Like Dr. Welch said, taking care of yourself pays dividends.

But still, I’d suggest, if we’re talking about physical things, aging gracefully is mostly beyond our control. What happens, happens.     

My energy in my 60s is not my energy in my 30s. My eyes were once especially sharp—I won all the read-the-sign-way-down-the-road contests. Now I wear blended tri-focal lens, and the beat goes on.

Aside from the physical, there’s another profoundly more important way to approach aging. We can consider what it means to age graciously, which is entirely within our control.

Abraham Lincoln once said, “Every man over 40 is responsible for his own face.” His point, for women too: our choices, our lifestyle, show up in our countenance.    

Scripture says, “A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit” (Proverbs 15:13). What’s on the inside shows up on the outside and etches tracks of its passing.

It’s possible to abuse our body, mind, and souls with worldly excesses: binge drinking and alcohol dependency, drugs including prescription opioids, unhealthy diets, cigarette smoking, little or no exercise, ongoing stress-inducing behaviors like overwork, lack of sleep, relentless drive for greater wealth, damaging and broken relationships, absence from church or other positive community, addictive pursuit of psychoactive drugs, sex, gambling, social media/Internet, video gaming—“About 41% of video gamers say they play video games to escape from real life…Over 7% of video gamers are addicted to this activity.

And then there’s shopping. Wait, shopping? Yes, shopping. “Over 17 million Americans cannot control their urge to shop, even at the expense of finances, marriage, jobs, and family.” Obviously, this stresses budgets and relationships.

Finally, there’s obesity, which can cause everything from arthritis to certain cancers to heart disease to diabetes. “The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the United States was nearly $173 billion in 2019 dollars.” Obesity is linked to six chronic diseases. It is one of the top five causes of death.

Notice disease per se is nowhere listed. Of course, disease takes a toll in a fallen world, but human beings are more responsible for their problems than we are typically willing to admit.

So, to review, it’s possible to inflict all manner of attitudes and behaviors upon our bodies, minds, and souls that debilitate our physical, mental, and emotional conditions and increase the prospects of an early death.

It’s hard to age gracefully or graciously if we die before our time. And don’t blame the Lord for this. He gave us all we need in Scripture for a joyful, productive, healthy life. But sound counsel is not effective if it is ignored.

Aging graciously can contribute to aging gracefully, but it’s about more than the physical. Aging graciously is about the spirit. Aging graciously is how the “real me” interacts with the world.     

We make jokes, but there’s really no place in Scripture where we can justify “grouchy old women” or “crotchety old men.” It isn’t there, yet who we are inside often heightens or sharpens with age, and it comes out. Meanwhile, Solomon said, “Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life” (Proverbs 16:31).    

Doug Steimers was a wise friend. He served 5 years in the Canadian Army during WWII, was married for 65 years to June, who’s with the Lord, and then several years to Betty. He pastored churches in Canada and the States for 40 years, helped churches in conflict for 10 years, and for more than 10 years in his “retirement” founded and led a caregiver’s ministry for his church. He did this into his 90s.   

Rev. Steimers, or Doug to most anyone, uses the word “intentionality,” meaning we should not simply grow “older” but “closer,” on purpose, to awareness of God’s presence in our lives. He says, “I’ve often asked myself and others, ‘How are we seniors using our last years for God?’”     

Doug said seniors should share more compassion than complaints. He recommended people do two things: 

  1. “Use your life intentionally for God; think about your motives,” and 
  2. “Broaden yourself,” keep learning, keep being open to what God can do with you now, today, at this age.       

It’s true that Doug, like Dr. Welch, was blessed with good health, which allowed him to remain active. But he also made decisions relative to his activities. For example, he voluntarily decided not to drive after dark or in heavy traffic during the day. There came a point in time when he declined public speaking invitations because his own evaluation suggested he could no longer speak in a manner to which he’d been accustomed.    

We can learn even more about aging graciously if we unpack Doug’s decisions. In thinking proactively about his life, he offered us a model. He didn’t “keep going” out of some spiritualized sense that he must because God demanded it. He didn’t wait until others felt he should not continue to serve—it’s always difficult (and it happens a lot) when an older person refuses to stop or change long after he or she should have done so.   

Doug didn’t associate his “worth” with his ability to do certain things. Not doing these things didn’t create for him an “insecurity problem.” No, his sense of who he was rested in his relationship with the Lord. Doug knew God is in charge of aging as well as serving, ministering, working.      

Dr. Welch modeled a similar process for me too. In his 80s, he chose a times, resigned from boards, decided not to continue speaking publicly when the rest of us still wanted him to do so, and made personal arrangements regarding he and his wife’s future living and care. I honor Dr. Welch and Rev. Steimers for their godly examples of proactive stewardship.   


We can fight it and complain about it. Or we can consider it a blessing and use it. That’s what I learned from Wilbert Welch and Doug Steimers. Aging gracefully is OK but might be selling our potential short. Aging graciously is a way to multiply a positive impact upon others in our latter years.   

Aging godly is another level. Who better to proclaim God’s faithfulness than older people? 

I understand our Rogers family verse better now than when my wife Sarah and I chose it at the birth of our first child in January 1976. “The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy” (Psalm 126:3).    

Aging ones know: “Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” (Psalm 23:6). 

Aging gracefully, graciously, godly is a worthy legacy.


Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at