Copyright

   Who here knows what plagiarism is? If I went out and used parts of a song somebody else published without asking, Iíd be in a lot of trouble wouldnít I? The same holds true with books, movies and the like. Everybody know what an I-Pod is? Well, who knows the name of the product Apple Computers came out with to compete with it? (I-Phone). It was supposed to be a handheld item that could do everything: phone, internet, e-mail, calendar, and more. I guess you heard the news about the I-Pod creators taking them to court suing over copyright infringements.

   Anybody here ever had someone copy there homework or try to copy answers off their paper for a test? That is plagiarism too! How many of you did that to someone else? Donít answer that! But did it make you uncomfortable or upset when someone copied you? Maybe you have written something, like a speech, for the Lord before (I know some of you do things like that), and you want to make sure people know, you did it. You donít want someone to copy it without saying they got it from you. Anybody watch religious shows on TV? Even here, you see things talking about copyrights, because people will take things and use them as there own without giving credit to the speaker/preacher. They sometimes even have to say, ďThere can be no reproduction of the material without the express written consent of such-and-suchĒ. Kind of bad when people plagiarize a preacher isnít it? Or is it?

   As many of you know, I have a website with a lot of articles on it dealing with Christianity as well as refuting false religions. Numerous times, I have been approached by people asking if they could use my material on their website, church, or whatever. Some of them actually go ahead and say that they will even put a link to my website, or mention my name as the author. You know what I tell them?

   Go ahead! Use it. Copy it word for word. Take my name off if you like. Sign your name. Tell people YOU created it on your own if you want and I copied it. Post it on the internet without a link to my site, use it in church or wherever without my name mentioned or even thought of. Make it yours.

   Now I have two reasons to do this. First, I can only reach so many people, even on the internet. I want people to read and see the information in these articles to lead them to the Lord, convert them from false religions, or strengthen their walk with the One True God. By letting them do this, they can reach people I never would have.

   The second reason is because, I NEED to be out of the picture. Why? Because itís not about ME, itís about God. When someone focuses time and energy taking credit for something that is supposed to bring others to God, then they are receiving their reward right now, here on earth, as men praise THEM, and lift THEM up. It suddenly becomes all about that preacher and what he is capable of, and what he has written. It puts him on a pedestal and makes the message contained, as well as God Himself, take a backseat. Do you think I or they came up with these things on our own? Do you think someone like this is so enlightened that they have no help from God. NO!! God chose to deliver that message through me and them. He could have chosen anybody, but He chose us. How we use it, where the focus of attention is, and how we try to spread it is a direct reflection of how we follow Godís instruction.

   Can you imagine where we would be if the writers of the John, Paul, Peter, Luke, and the like had copyrighted their stuff? But they didnít. In fact, they wanted it freely distributed.

   So my point is this: When you say you are doing something for God, question yourself. Are you REALLY doing it for God? Maybe you are looking around trying to see who is taking notice of what you are doing so you get a pat on the back. Maybe you are saying something that sounds real good, and of the Lord, only to want to hear people say how wonderfully God inspired you are. If you want to say or do something for God, do it, then let it be. Donít go around talking about it to draw attention to yourself or get upset when nobody around you says ďYou did such-and-suchĒ so goodĒ. Donít feel nobody is appreciative of you. When you do that, you are seeking manís approval versus Godís. There is nothing that God doesnít see or know. Wait on your reward and blessing from Him.

Mike Harris



 

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