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Lowell Brueckner

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The Good Shepherd and His Sheep


Before you read this article, you might want to refresh your mind concerning our topic by reading John 10.10-21.

I am giving classes in Spanish over the radio on the Gospel of John and having studied it with intensity again, I have seen that it has a purpose of taking us into intimacy with God. It shows us the fountain of intimacy is found in the Father and the Son and Jesus prays to the Father that we might enter into the same oneness and the same love. In this passage, we see the intimacy between Himself and His disciples by illustrating it to us, using the example of the Good Shepherd and His sheep.

If we are very familiar with portions of the Bible, such as this one, there is a danger that it may no longer impress us, or surprise us, as it did when we first read it. We must be careful that we do not lose the wonder of the gospel and the wonder of the One, who is its chief character.  I remember the one time that I visited Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, when John Piper was pastor. He preached that day on Romans 1:16: “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it is the power of God unto salvation for all those who believe.” He taught that the gospel not only affects the unbeliever, but it continues to move the believer all his life and on into eternity. Then, we sang the last verse of the old hymn, “I Love to Tell the Story”. That verse states, “I love to tell the story, for those who know it best, seem hungering and thirsting, to hear it like the rest…” Before us now is Christ’s teaching about the Good Shepherd and His sheep and it may be new for some and for others very familiar, but let us all give it our full attention.

I can never forget the time that we were driving through Mexico on the main highway between Saltillo and Mexico City. For some reason, traffic began to slow in the open country and soon we came upon a scene that was horrible and unforgettable. Strewed across the highway were five or six sheep, bloody and dead, and among them, lying still, was the little shepherd boy. Yes, in many rural families in Mexico, it was the youngest boy, who watched over the sheep, while the bigger fellows tended to more important things.

Thanks to All

I want to express my gratitude to all those who visit this blog, whether it be for the first time or if you have come regularly, perhaps from the time we began in 2011. I have tried to be responsible and careful with all that I have presented, things that I believe should be beneficial to disciples in this 21st Century. Together with the Spanish blog, we are coming close to 75,000 visits from many parts of the world. Included are places I’ve never visited and from which I know no one. Welcome!

It is my desire to do everything I can to help others along this Christian way, especially through such precarious times. I hope that you are edified as you read the articles, and that they give you greater longings than ever to keep moving along en route to glory. You will not read long here before you notice spiritual “anti-virus” material, because I feel it is a necessary part of my ministry to warn younger or newer Christians of the great dangers that they will encounter in Christian circles. For many years I have had opportunity to be in contact with Christians from different backgrounds and denominations from a good many parts of the world. I have also tried to be informed on church history, as well as the actual situation, in order to speak with some authority, at least, about where we stand today.

A few days ago, for instance, I saw a very short video, then read an article about what took place in a meeting attended by tens of thousands of people. Victory Osteen, the wife of the famous pastor, Joel Osteen, gave a short address, which I would call an attempt to get God to buy into her extreme egotism. Don’t worry, he won’t! But this is a little taste of her view and Joel’s, for sure, of Christianity: "I just want to encourage every one of us to realize: When we obey God, we're not doing it for God…  We're doing it for ourselves.  Because God takes pleasure when we're happy… So I want you to know this morning, just do good for your own self… When you come to church, when you worship him, you're not doing it for God, really.  You're doing it for yourself, because that's what makes God happy.  Amen?" And, of course, all the Osteen disciples said, “Amen”. I won’t bother you with any more of that anti-biblical and humanistic heresy. Let it be known that there are many Christian leaders, who recognize it as such. Albert Mohler, a seminary president protested and Steve Camp defined that talk as “the old sin of idolatry… it’s not about God, it’s about us.” That’s what it is and we’d better believe it.

The Gospel of Intimacy


“No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.”  John 15:15

It seems evident to me that from the time that God’s Spirit brooded (Heb. râchaph) over the surface of the waters (Ge.1:2), God purposed to create a being, with whom He could be intimate. He expressed it in the profound communication that exists in the trinity: “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness” (1:26). After the travesty that outweighs all others that ever occurred, God walked in the garden in the cool of the day and called to Adam, “Where are you?” (3:9). Adam’s relationship with his Creator was overshadowed by a thick cloud, because of his disobedience, and he hid in fear and shame.

  Can anything be done to remedy an act of rebellion against the supreme authority over the universe, whose command cannot once be slighted in the smallest measure? Is there a way to erase a blemish caused by sin and the following, innumerable offenses by Adam and his descendents against a thrice-holy God? The problem of the ages could only be resolved in the mind of the Omniscient, and the means would be accomplished through his beloved and only Son. Therefore, the eternal Son of God stepped down from His unfathomable glory and became Man, with one purpose in mind and that purpose was to reconcile man to God. It would be accomplished through the sacrificial death of this God/Man. Peter sees it and teaches us: “Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God…” (1 Pt.3:18). The purpose was reconciliation.

  This was the desire and design of the Spirit of God behind the writing of a unique Gospel, different from the three wonderful accounts penned previously. He prepared an author and preserved his life, after all his fellow-apostles had given theirs in martyrdom. Sixty more years were required to equip and endow him with the wisdom to proclaim a Gospel of restored intimacy between God and man.

  This writer was the former fisherman, John, who called himself the disciple that Jesus loved. He was the one, who reclined on Jesus’ bosom after the last supper.

On Receiving Admonition by A. W. Tozer


“Better was a poor and wise youth than an old and foolish king who no longer knew how to take advice..”  Ecc 4:13 

from the book, “The Root of the Righteous¨ chapter 7,  by A. W. Tozer

Don’t think that Tozer chose this text, looking for a sermon for his Sunday morning service in his church, or that he prepared it for preaching in one of the annual “Councils” (as they called them) of his denomination. That is, he wasn’t motivated by an urge to have an interesting text to catch the attention of the thousands of people attending from all parts of America and representatives of various parts of the world.

We lived within 300 miles of Chicago, where Tozer was pastoring a church. I was only 19-years-old when Tozer died and I don’t remember ever hearing him in person, but I have read every book I could find of his and listened to dozens of his tapes. My dad heard him on various occasion in these “Councils”, that I mentioned, or in pastoral conventions, because he belonged to the same denomination. Also, I communicated for at least ten years personally, by letters and by telephone with a good friend of Tozer, Leonard Ravenhill. Len preached in Tozer’s church, prayed alone with him and considered him his mentor.

No, from what I know about Tozer, he didn’t write this chapter because its theme would fit nicely into his book. He wrote it because he knew personally some of these “kings¨, just like the one described in Ecclesiastes, and I suspect that he found some of them in the organization that he belonged to. Tozer had enemies, who didn’t like him, because he brought to light the situations that he knew on his back doorstep. I had a friend, who was a student at a Bible school under the same denomination. Tozer came to talk to the students at the school’s “spiritual life week”, and afterwards was severely criticized by some of the professors.  

A Small Tribute to Marvin Doxtator


This weary world with all its toils and struggles
May take its toll of misery and strife
The soul of man is like a waiting eagle
When it’s released it’s destined for the skies.

The Marvin Doxtator family 
I want to say a few words about a man that I'm proud to say was my brother-in-law, Marvin Doxtator. On Thursday, October 2 at 5:15 P.M., with his family gathered around him singing, Marv, at 89 years of age, left this weary world behind. At the instance his soul was released, it honed in on its destination.

Marv’s father, mother, and grandfather found the Savior, when he was a boy. He had the privilege of observing the difference, when parents are rescued from sin and their house becomes a home. So Marv, seeing that reality, turned to Christ, when he was young. Others of his relatives and family came in later and set their sails on the easterly course that harbors
 in the New Jerusalem. 

Dad’s Slides


(Click to enlarge photos)
Last summer I bought a converter on-line that converts slides into digital photos. The main reason that I wanted it was to preserve my dad’s collection of slides taken of his work among the Native Americans. Some of them have already been destroyed by dampness over the years.

Somewhere close to 1950, a blind youth by the name of Norman gave Dad the 35 mm. camera and projector specifically for this work. Norman was one of the unsung heroes of the faith that you will meet in heaven. He was 18-years-old at the time and already an ‘A’ student in the University of Wisconsin. I remember when he stayed at our home for a time and the picture that is fixed in my mind is of Norman
Mrs. Christen and her daughter
reading his Braille Bible in our living room. I need to search for the slide that my Dad took of Norman, sitting on the foundation of a church that Dad was building in Oneida, Wisconsin, while ministering to the Oneida Natives. Hopefully, it is still in good condition. Norman is the reason that these slides are available.

I do have on hand a slide of another unsung hero… Mrs. Christen. In the 1930’s, my parents, who had never been exposed to the gospel, moved next door to Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Christen. They observed the uniqueness of this couple, something in their very persons, beyond what they said and did. Through them my parents came to the Lord in 1935. Some of you may know the story from reading my book, What Our Hands Have Handled. No slides would have ever been taken by my dad, who became a missionary to the Native American, had it not been for the Christens. I am so happy that I can share them with you.