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Category Archives: News stories

Looking for strength when fear closes in

My son posted the link to a thought provoking article on Facebook. “Nikabrik’s Candidate” is written by Gina Dalfonzo and compares our current political landscape to C. S. Lewis’ book, Prince Caspian, one of The Chronicles of Narnia. The author explains that

Lewis had a remarkable understanding of human nature. He knew what it was like to feel that all hope was lost. And he knew that fear and despair can drive decent people to look for someone, anyone, who projects an appearance of strength.

In speaking of Donald Trump, Dalfonzo wonders aloud “how some who have professed faith in Jesus Christ are lured by a man who openly puts all his faith in power and money, the very things Christ warned us against prizing too highly.”

You may not agree with everything the author says, but the article will make you think.

Thanks, Jon, for posting the link.

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2016 in Books, Culture, News stories, Quotes

 

Did you know the Bible calls for Christians to be extremists?

Extremists are in the news. “The attacks in Paris have shown us extremism at its most brutal and bloody, the kind that celebrates death, destruction and mayhem.”

As Christ followers, we often go the opposite direction and avoid being characterized like this. We think moderation is next to godliness. But did you know that the Bible calls for Christians to be extremists? Titus 2:14 calls for Christ followers to be “zealous for good works.” As blogger Tim Challies points out, we are to be zealots in our efforts to do good.

But did you know that the Bible calls Christians to extremism as well? It calls Christians to be zealots in a cause, to go to great lengths to carry out extreme deeds in the name of Jesus. We see this in Paul’s little letter to Titus where we are reminded of Jesus Christ “who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14).

We, too, are to be extremists. We, too, are to go to extreme measures to serve our God. And here are our marching orders: Do good. We are to bring glory to God by doing good for others. Allah may be glorified in maimed bodies and blood-soaked city streets, but God is glorified in acts of love and deeds of kindness. He is glorified in deeds done not to earn favor with God, but deeds done as an expression of gratitude because we have already received the favor of God. God is glorified as we serve others in his name. God is honored in the costly sacrifice of love.

Click on the link to read the full article, “A Call for Christian Extremists.” Get out of your comfort zone and do good.

 

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2015 in News stories, Scripture, Theology, Tim Challies

 

The elusive commodity, PEACE

In a world of violence, chaos, disorder, and tragedy, we must recognize that the world will not know peace until the Prince of Peace reigns in every heart.

So … pray for peace in Paris, Jerusalem, the Middle East, your local community … strive to live at peace … and share the message of Jesus with those you come in contact with.

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2015 in Culture, News stories, Theology

 

Of princes, presidents, and prime ministers

Tim Challies has written an insightful blog post regarding our tendency to get excited and/or depressed when our party wins/loses an election. In “I went away for just 6 days …” he tells of Canada’s recent election where Justin Trudeau and his Liberal Party of Canada were swept into power. Though initially discouraged, Challies says that it was

a sudden and interesting little realization that drew me out of my despair. I found myself pondering the well-known words of Psalm 146:3-4: “Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation. When his breath departs, he returns to the earth; on that very day his plans perish.” Here the psalmist admits our temptation to find hope in men, to put our trust in princes and presidents and prime ministers. We know better. We know the futility of trusting in men. But still we are prone to it. Still we do it.

And it struck me that there are two sides to this temptation. The temptation is not only to put my hope in politicians but to put my despair in them as well. I will be tempted not only to find too much joy in the election of the person I voted for, but also to sink too far into despair in the election of the person I did not. Either way, whether I soar too high or sink too low, I am declaring that I have put my trust in a man more than in God. I have forgotten that, ultimately, it is God who rules over and through earthly rulers.

Regardless as to whether or not our preferred party wins next Tuesday’s election and next year’s Presidential election here in the USA, God still reigns on his throne. A good reminder as we move into and through the next election cycle.

 
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Posted by on October 28, 2015 in News stories, Quotes, Scripture, Tim Challies

 

Understanding our sexually charged culture

My wife, Carol, & I wanted to pass on two resources for your consideration that will help you better understand our sexually charged culture and how to minister to our youth.

The Emotional STD” is an article written by Dr. Meg Meeker and appears on Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk web page. It demonstrates the link between teenage sexual activity, depression, and suicide.

We Cannot Be Silent is a book written by Dr. Albert Mohler. I recently reviewed it on my blog. The book traces the roots of our current sexual mores back to the 60’s and helps explain how to minister in light of where we are.

The article and the book are both heavy, sobering reading. In that sense, they are not for the faint of heart and may leave you a bit saddened or even depressed. But they will open your eyes and give you food for thought and cause you to pray for wisdom as to how to minister to people in today’s culture.

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2015 in Books, Culture, Ministry, News stories

 

Speak up

Word is coming out that yesterday’s shooting at Umqua Community College in Roseburg, OR, was aimed at Christians. The shooter asked if the person was a Christian. If they said, “Yes,” he shot them in the head. If they said remained silent or said, “Other,” he shot them in the leg. The event prompted many Christians to post the question on Facebook, “If someone put a gun to your head and asked if you were a Christian, what would you say?” While that is certainly a valid question, perhaps a more pressing one is, “Why do we wait until there is a gun to our head before we speak up for Christ?”

As Christ followers, we have the good news that forgiveness is a free gift through Jesus Christ. We need to share this message with those who have no hope.

 
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Posted by on October 2, 2015 in Evangelism, Faith, News stories

 

Are we persecuted or just offended?

Dr. Russell Moore has written a thought provoking article entitled, “The Difference Between Being Offended and Being Persecuted.” In his opening paragraph, he states,

There are two key mistakes American Christians tend to make when thinking about the intersection of religion and culture. The first is to have an attitude of a “majority” culture, a mindset that incorrectly conflates a civic morality with Christianity and seeks to build coalitions to “turn America back” to Christ. But there is another mistake too, and that is to have a fearful, hand-wringing siege mentality. While it’s true that religious liberty is genuinely imperiled, perhaps more than at any time since the revolutionary era, we will not be able to articulate our commitments in this arena if we don’t know how to differentiate between state persecution and cultural marginalization, between public oppression and personal offense.

Click on the link above to read the entire article.

(Thanks, Tim Jack, for turning me on to the article.)

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2015 in Culture, News stories, Quotes

 
 
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