Monday, 31 October 2011

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Do Miracles “Violate” the “Laws” of Nature?

CARM Blog

I remember reading the work of a popular apologist not too long ago in which radical higher criticism was briefly analyzed in order to expose its anti-supernatural presuppositions. The author did a great job in showing how the claims of radical higher criticism cannot be substantiated without first presupposing that (i.)God does not exist or (ii.)if God exists then He cannot violate the Laws of Nature by performing miracles, but I had a problem with the language he used for (ii.). I found the wording of (ii.) to be problematic in two ways. Firstly, for the Christian, the wording presupposes that particular metaphysical claims espoused by the unbeliever are true and must be accepted as such (i.e. the wording makes an unnecessary concession to the unbeliever’s implied worldview); and secondly, for the unbeliever, asking whether or not God can violate the Laws of Nature involves assuming (a.)a particular worldview that Biblical Christianity does not teach, and it also (b.)is guilty of the fallacy of equivocation.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Waiting for the Right Opportunity

A word from Greg Koukl,

The next three holiday-intensive months will mean face time with family members you may not see regularly, and you may not agree with spiritually.

So here’s my advice for your holiday encounters. First, shoot up a quick prayer for help, then be patient. Listen, a lot. Ask plenty of questions. Wait for the right opportunity before weighing in. Second, take what God gives you, even if it’s less than you hoped for. Don’t swing for the stands. Just try to get on base. Make one good point.

It’s not really that tricky.

Friday, 21 October 2011

"Have An Abundant Life"


Here is the full clip of Todd and Jessa Bentley

How to Attract Abundance
See the world as an abundant, providing, friendly place. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. When you see the world as abundant and friendly, your intentions are genuine possibilities. They will, in fact, become a certainty, because your world will be experienced from the higher frequencies. In this first step, you're receptive to a world that provides rather than restricts. You'll see a world that wants you to be successful and abundant, rather than one that conspires against you.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Believer’s Baptism

GTY.org
September 25, 2011

Last Sunday night I introduced to you the subject of infant Baptism and really the broader subject of Baptism itself. And I made a comment that it is a paradox that the world is full of baptized non-Christians and unbaptized Christians. There is a world of people who have been baptized by the mode if infant Baptism by sprinkling, that has been a dominating form of Baptism in the Christian church historically. And as I said, there are a world of people who have been baptized that way which is not a true baptism, but nonetheless it is identified as a Baptism who have nothing to do with the church and don’t know the Lord genuinely.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Three Christian Gay Lies

Quotes from ChristianGay.com "Pastor" Lisa


Lie #1

1 Corinthians 6:9-10

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (KJV)

The phrase we want to look at is: nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind. According to Strong's the Greek word translated as effeminate is #3120, malakos (mal-ak-os'); of uncertain affinity; soft, i.e. fine (clothing); figuratively, a catamite. A catamite, according to Webster's is a kept boy. In these days it was very common for young males to prostitute themselves to older, wealthy men in exchange for money, education or a place to live. These were not intended to be love relationships. Many of these men were married to women. These boys were simply kept for sexual purposes as live-in prostitutes. As I stated in the Gay Lifestyle section of this article, I do not defend this type of activity. Unfortunately, today, there is a group of young, male prostitutes that has come about because their parents kicked them out of the house for being gay. These are two different things. Young male prostitutes do not equal homosexuals and homosexuals do not equal young male prostitutes. Prostitution has nothing to do with homosexuality.

Wrong Worship

You Might Be a Pragmatist

1 Corinthians 2:1–5
Proclaiming Christ Crucified 
2 And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. 2 For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3 And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, 4 and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.


GTY Blog
Monday, October 17, 2011

I’d imagine most of us on the conservative end of evangelicalism—whether you’re part of the YRR crowd or the OBR (Old, Boring, Reformed) crowd—we understand the wrongheadedness of church growth methodology. It’s easy to see how men like the early pioneers of church growth (Donald McGavran, C. Peter Wagner, Robert Schuller) and their most famous disciples (Bill Hybels, Rick Warren, Joel Osteen) got it wrong.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Is Infant Baptism Biblical?

September 18, 2011 GTY.org

One of the strange paradoxes in the church is that the world is full of baptized non-Christians, millions of them all over the planet, baptized non-Christians. While at the same time, the church is full of non-baptized Christians, like some of you. What a strange paradox that is. And it raises the issue of baptism and what it is and why people are so confused about it. We here at Grace Community Church understand baptism biblically. We understand its method, we understand its meaning. We have even through the years put baptisms on the radio, which no other ministry that I know of has ever done. We have, through the years, in the early days of our Shepherds Conference has taken one of the nights of Shepherds Conference to do baptisms. We had a baptism last week at the conclusion of the Truth Matters Conference. And essentially, just about every single Sunday night through the year right here we have testimonies of people being baptized. We understand what believer’s baptism is from Scripture.

Read more


Resource: GTY.org

Adam: The First Superman!


This is just too funny! I had to stop it at 20s and laugh about it with my wife. I wasn't sure if I could continue listening to the rest of it, but I wanted to hear more about Super Adam flying to the moon!

I Held My Tongue and Waited...

Dear Michael,

The next three holiday-intensive months will mean face time with family members you may not see regularly, and you may not agree with spiritually.

Since conversations can get awkward, I have a suggestion that could make your job easier: Get back to basics. First, ask questions and listen, a lot. Second, don’t swing for the fences. Instead, just try to get on base. Try to make one good point stick.

Let me give you an example of how that basic approach worked for me on a 47-minute flight from Los Angeles to San Jose recently. I’d settled in for the short hop expecting to get some work done when a middle-aged gentleman sat down next to me.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Purposeless: The Purpose Driven Lie

Today's society has held to a notion that there is no purpose to life but purposes. One may find millions of purposes for something but have no norm to which to judge how a thing has purposes. What I'm saying is people like to say that you can have no purpose but have purposes to live for. My question is, How can you have purposes without a purpose?

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

By All Means Save Some

by John MacArthur

Paul’s one aim in making himself the slave of all was so that they might be saved. He was not trying to win a popularity contest. He was not seeking to make himself or the gospel appealing to them. His whole purpose was evangelistic. C. H. Spurgeon, preaching on 1 Corinthians 9, said,

I fear there are some who preach with the view of amusing men, and as long as people can be gathered in crowds, and their ears can be tickled, and they can retire pleased with what they have heard, the orator is content, and folds his hands, and goes back self-satisfied. But Paul did not lay himself out to please the public and collect the crowd. If he did not save them he felt that it was of no avail to interest them. Unless the truth had pierced their hearts, affected their lives, and made new men of them, Paul would have gone home crying, “Who hath believed our report, and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?” …

Highlight on XXXChurch

I understand why he gets sarcastic: Christians are not doing anything to reach people with a repentance & believe on Christ alone to save you from hell & give you eternal life gospel. I reach out to strippers I GIVE THEM THE GOSPEL FROM THE KJB! When I was a stripper I wanted the truth but I never had a Christian give it to me, ever! Where's the laborer's? People like Craig Gross need to get saved!
Carlyofyork 4 days ago

XXXChurch is a typical example of what happens when Christians or even "professing" Christians don't understand the big picture. Thanks for you post Carlyofyork!
God Bless you!

Friday, 30 September 2011

Dealing with Mocking

A word of advice when dealing with a scoffer:

Proverbs 9:7
New King James Version (©1982)
"He who corrects a scoffer gets shame for himself, And he who rebukes a wicked man only harms himself."

Proverbs 9:8
New Living Translation (©2007)
"So don't bother correcting mockers; they will only hate you. But correct the wise, and they will love you."

Proverbs 15:12
New International Version (©1984)
"A mocker resents correction; he will not consult the wise."

Proverbs 19:25
New Living Translation (©2007)
"If you punish a mocker, the simpleminded will learn a lesson; if you correct the wise, they will be all the wiser."

Proverbs 15:5
New Living Translation (©2007)
"Only a fool despises a parent's discipline; whoever learns from correction is wise."

Proverbs 8:12
English Standard Version (©2001)
"I, wisdom, dwell with prudence,* and I find knowledge and discretion."


*Good judgement

Challenge: Is Biblical Law Inconsistent?



Challenge: Why Does God Require a Blood Sacrifice?

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Turn to the Person Next to You....

Four months ago I commented on a video on YouTube and this is what I wrote: (mind you I think I was listening to Wretched Radio)
1:38 lol WHY DO THEY DO THAT? or the good ol' "Turn to the person next to you and say "God Bless You" or the classic "Stand up and greet the ones around you" etc. BAH! I already know them, or I don't want to say hi. We are there as a body to worship together, isn't that enough? I already said hi when I came in and I don't intend to make friends with every single Christian. They shouldn't get any more special treatment than an unbeliever hehe. I'm just joshing. I love my brethren. But come on!

Later I replied to another comment (below) that was encouraging love between brothers but missed my point: 
1Pe 1:22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently
Also see John 13:34; Acts 2:42; 1st Peter 3:8 to 9; 1st John 3:14 & 1st John 3:16
I get what you're saying, nevertheless, love one another as Christ has and always will love us.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Christ's Holiness and Our Sinfulness

If God is Love....

It has come to thought at times when I think about all the people who have never heard the word of God that How could God throw these people into hell without them being aware of the fact that they are going there? To me it seems that God is reasonable and has planned out the fate of each person. I know that not everyone will be going to heaven, but it still bothers me at times to think that most people will not see His face and be cast forever into eternal punishment in hell for their sins unaware. I guess that's anybody's misunderstanding of God's love for His creation. It looks like there is a paradox because God has an agape unconditional love for mankind. Let me share with you my thoughts after meditating on the book of Job. I hope this will give you comfort in the times of frustration in the issue of guilt and the pleasures in fantasy of a life without God that may be conjured up in your mind when you think about letting go of your faith. My first note to make is you will never escape the feeling of guilt by escaping the thought of a living personal God.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Can The Bible and Darwin Both Be Right?



THAT was the former Archbishop of Canterbury? Wow his theology is out of whack! Listen to how he stupendously twists the meaning of the scripture. "Adam means earth, Eve: the mother living, seven days: that talks about perfection...that kind of thing." I dunno where in scripture it says that.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

What Do I Need to Be Thankful For?

5 Reasons Historians Take the New Testament Seriously

1. The accounts are early. As ancient records go, 
the narratives were written very close to the events
they report.

2. Multiple, independent, primary source
documents verify each other. In addition to the
works of Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and the
writings of Peter and Paul, 17 secular references
along with prodigious archaeological evidence
further corroborate the canonical accounts.

3. The New Testament documents include details
of eyewitness testimony: times of day, weather
conditions, local customs, names of provincial
rulers, and other minutia characteristic of
authentic accounts.

4. The Gospels include embarrassing details. Jesus’
disciples are petty, slow to understand, arrogant,
and unfaithful. Peter denies Christ; the rest flee.
Women, disrespected in the ancient world, are
the first to witness the risen Christ.Why include
these unflattering details if the Gospels are works
of fiction?

5. There was no motivation for the writers to
deceive.Those who lie, do so out of self-interest.
A testimony that brings torment, torture, and
execution is not likely to be fabricated.The earliest
disciples—those who were in a position to know
the truth—signed their testimonies in blood.
Peter wrote,“We did not follow cleverly devised
tales when we made known to you the power
and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were
eyewitnesses of His majesty” (2 Pet. 1:16). His
claim fits all the facts.


Resource: Stand To Reason September/October 2011 Issue of Enhanced Solid Ground

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

"Not Allowing Women Pastors is Sexist"

by Matt Slick

Email: "I read what you had to say on women pastors and quite honestly my view has not changed in the least. Isn't God's will done in heaven as it is on earth? We are not defined by gender in heaven, why should we be on earth. The sons of God can also be female as well as male. Anyone who thinks a woman should not preach is sexist. Don't you think you should listen to her voice and words preached rather than judging her based upon what is under her clothes. Or is it that men find a woman preaching too distracting, just like how Muslims prefer their women to wear hoods. God forbid they ever speak! Sexism is a tool of the Devil himself! By the way, I am married to Christ. I submit to the Lord. Love, Erika P."

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Settle Down

Don’t lose your passion and energy; take charge of it
Tuesday, August 23, 2011, GTY.org

The “restless” aspect of the Young, Restless, Reformed movement is something of a mixed blessing. Restlessness per se is is of course no great virtue. But the energy, intensity, drive, and passion that underlie the restless tendencies of our young adult years are wonderful assets that hold great potential for good. They can be—and should be—harnessed and put to work for Christ’s kingdom.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

What Does It Mean to Fulfill the Law in Romans 8:3-4

Twelve Theses
December 09, 2001 | by John Piper | Scripture: Romans 8:3-4

Romans 8:3-4
For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
The question today is very practical and tremendously important. What does Paul mean in verse 4 when he says that the aim of Christ's death is "that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit"?

Why should God make people knowing they are going to hell forever?

This question raises many issues. If God is all-loving, why would He send people to hell? What is hell? Is it a place of eternal torment? Why create creatures knowing they will end up in an eternity of damnation? Is God helpless to save them all?

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

The Need To Answer Every Man - Norman L. Geisler

“You know, all this stuff about arguments for God’s existence and evidence for the Resurrection is interesting, and I know there is a place for it, but I’ve never needed it,” the pastor said as he looked in the rearview mirror to change lanes. The young man seated next to him remained silent for a moment, slightly shocked by this statement. The pastor continued, “The people I share the Gospel with just don’t ask those questions. They aren’t interested in whether truth is objective, or what ancient historians said about Jesus and the Resurrection, or solutions to the problem of evil. Most people just aren’t the kind that are philosophical about what they believe.”

Euthyphro's Dilemma

Plato's challenge concerning the nature of goodness is still being heard today: Is an act right because God says it's so, or does God say it's so because it's right?¹

By: Gregory Koukl


What is Euthyphro's Dilemma?
by Matt Slick

The Euthyphro dilemma comes from Plato’s Euthyphro dialogue, which has had different forms over the centuries. Basically, it is “Are moral acts willed by God because they are good, or are they good because they are willed by God?" Another way of saying it is, does God say that things are moral because they are by nature moral, or do they become moral because God declares them to be?

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Wretched on the YRR

Thursday, August 18, 2011
GTY.org


Be sure to catch Todd Friel interview Phil Johnson today at 12:00 noon PST on his radio program, “Wretched with Todd Friel.” It’s sure to be a lively discussion about John MacArthur’s YRR series.

Listen to this 43-minute clip


Resource: gty.org

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Bart Ehrman: The Incoherency of the Gospels

This is so easy. Just think about his argument. He argues that there are incoherencies between the Gospels. So what? The Bible isn't actually one book after all. He's acting as if Christians didn't see this before they put it together in 325 at the Council of Nicea. He also makes the argument that the manuscripts have been changed over time and he gives a "telephone" analogy as an illustration--very colourful, but that's just not how it happened with the early copies of the manuscripts.

Bart Ehrman's Remark on Gnostics



"Secret knowledge." That hurts. Even though there is emphasis on being "not of this world" and finding salvation in "secret knowledge". He has no reason to make such a statement about Christians. It's so subjective. Gnostic "christians" believe in all truth and they look for any truth to comfort them. It was a heresy made up from the time of the early churches. It wasn't a church per se but a group of people who felt that Christianity became a narrow understanding. Gnostic christians believe that "there was and is a more refreshing, honest, open, spiritual, loving, and exciting way to be a Christian." ¹

Anyways, he's still not as amazing as John MacArthur when it comes to knowledge of the scriptures. I mean just listen to John's lectures and sermons or a person with even more amazing knowledge is R.C. Sproul. They are just so in depth. Far more than Ehrman. If you're interested to read some arguments against his book and lecture, check out the link below:

Forged?


Reference: ¹ Larry Angus, gnosticschristians.com

Cynicism in Arguments

Ravi Zacharias wrote in his book Can Man Live Without God,
"Skepticism and cynicism have suddenly become the hallmarks of sophistication, and the knowledge of who we are has been left to the domain of the uneducated or unscientific (since they are the only ones naive enough to believe that truth is absolute)."

If God exists, then...

Following are four attempted proofs for why God does not exist, which have been taken from the CARM atheism discussion board.  I have reproduced them and addressed each one.

First

  1. If God exists he would make himself clearly known to me.
  2. He has not made Himself clearly known to me.
  3. Therefore God does not exist.
    1. Premise:  If God exists he would make himself clearly known to me.
      1. Response:  It is not logically necessary that if God exists he must make himself known to any individual.  There is no "must" or "ought" or "would" to it as required by this atheist.  If God exists, he can do what he wants; whether it is to remain undetected, or detected, to anyone.
    2. Premise:  He has not made Himself clearly known to me.
      1. Response:  This may or may not be the case.  It may be that such a person has indeed encountered a revelation of God.  But, if the person has a presuppositional base that excludes the existence of God, then such evidence of God would be discarded and missed.
    3. Premise:  Therefore God does not exist.
      1. Response:  Since premise one and two are not logically true, the conclusion does not necessarily follow from the premises.

Monday, 15 August 2011

Arguing By False Authority & Arguing to Be the Smartest!

Arguing to be the Smartest!
I'm just tired of arguing with Atheists who act like their beliefs were never influenced by others. They act like they know more than I do or even the scholars I refer to. I can admit that I don't know everything and so I quote a resource that I trust.

Arguing by False Authority
The worst argument I've heard is one from Richard Dawkins where he argues that when you are grown up in a Hindu family then you believe in Hinduism or if you were brought up Christian you are identified as Christian. He also argues that people shouldn't be "labelled" by their parents. Does he think he came to this "rationality" on his own? His argument is basically that religious people brainwash their children to believe in something against their will and innocence. He believes that it's wrong to indoctrinate children with religion because they are credulous to believe in anything. But on the other hand it's okay to indoctrinate them with his worldview. His worldview has been influenced by people he respected. This could be people with authority in science and academics. He quotes his favourite influences, doesn't he? As I trust in good credible bible scholars, so does he trust in credible scholars of his own. The difference is who we trust to be credible on the things we talk about--especially when it comes to the Bible.

How about Obama's open mockery of the Bible when he talked about public policy? He was so smug when he openly criticized verses like in Leviticus and Deuteronomy and the Sermon on the Mount, and condescends the people by saying, "Folks haven't been readin' their Bible!" He so arrogantly and sarcastically takes verses painfully out of context. He says it with a smug attitude laughing as if he understood the Bible--acting on false authority.

From the Defensive to the Offensive
About my first complaint, this type of Atheist will not be humble about their knowledge. It's immature. It's like the time I talked to an anarchist about the riots in London. You know what teenagers are like; excited to be part of some group, to feel like they belong, standing up against "The Man." It's ignorant and naive. Teenagers think they know everything and they think they're invincible and act out with illogical arguments. I'm only yet to be 26 in a few months and I can admit that I am naive about some things and ignorant. I won't try to prove myself to know more than someone else. And I won't make a claim unless I have good reason and evidence. I can share what I know and it's up to the listener to trust it or test it themselves. I can't throw it down their throat. But my point is that I am not gonna defend the Bible to these irrational Atheists, but be on the offensive to their illogical claims. I want them to think clearly about their worldview and arguments and show them where they went wrong in their logic and lead them to figure it out on their own.

God Bless
Michael

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Who Was Cain's Wife?

by Ken Ham on September 13, 2007

Who Was Cain?
Cain was the first child of Adam and Eve recorded in Scripture (Genesis 4:1). He and his brothers, Abel (Genesis 4:2) and Seth (Genesis 4:25), were part of the first generation of children ever born on this earth. Even though these three males are specifically mentioned, Adam and Eve had other children.

Cain’s Brothers and Sisters
In Genesis 5:4 we read a statement that sums up the life of Adam and Eve: “After he begot Seth, the days of Adam were eight hundred years; and he had sons and daughters.”

During their lives, Adam and Eve had a number of male and female children. In fact, the Jewish historian Josephus wrote, “The number of Adam’s children, as says the old tradition, was thirty-three sons and twenty-three daughters.”

Scripture doesn’t tell us how many children were born to Adam and Eve, but considering their long life spans (Adam lived for 930 years—Genesis 5:5), it would seem logical to suggest there were many. Remember, they were commanded to “be fruitful, and multiply” (Genesis 1:28).

Faith is Gullibility

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Non-Biblical Accounts of New Testament Events and/or People

by Matt Slick at CARM.org

Flavius Josephus (AD 37?-101?, a Jewish historian) mentions John the Baptist and Herod - Antiquities, Book 18, ch. 5, par. 2
"Now some of the Jews thought that the destruction of Herod's army came from God, and that very justly, as a punishment of what he did against John, that was called the Baptist: for Herod slew him, who was a good man, and commanded the Jews to exercise virtue, both as to righteousness towards one another, and piety towards God, and so to come to baptism; for that the washing [with water] would be acceptable to him, if they made use of it, not in order to the putting away [or the remission] of some sins [only], but for the purification of the body; supposing still that the soul was thoroughly purified beforehand by righteousness."
Note: There is dispute as to the reliability of the Josephus accounts. However, there is no textual/manuscript reason for doubting them since the extant Greek manuscripts all agree with the texts in question; namely, the quotes shown on this page. However, the reason the quotes are in doubt is because of the text in italics in the various quotes; they seem a little too favorable regarding Christ. Also, it appears that the writings of Josephus were transmitted to us through the Christian community.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

The Marks of Immaturity, and How to Keep Growing

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

by John MacArthur

Editor’s Note: This post is adapted from Reckless Faith (Wheaton: Crossway, 1994, pp. 63-66). As you read, think about the fact that these words were written 17 years ago. For many of you YRR folks, John was writing to your parents!

The immaturity and lack of discernment that marked your parents’ generation explains much of what we’re living with today. On this, I think we are agreed: The YRR generation simply cannot follow the same course. So, listen to what your parents ignored, and together, let’s get this ship heading in the right direction.

Read more

Resource: www.gty.org/Blog

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Did Christianity Copy Mythology?

Lee Strobel, BibleGateway.com
Questions from Readers, July 28

• Did Christianity copy mythology?
• Can people be good without God?

Q. I have heard that the story of Jesus is just a copy of Mithras, “The Sun God” who was worshipped centuries before Christ was born. Is this true? Is there a relationship between the two? From what I have read, Christianity and Mithraism are very similar. – Tami

Are You Telling the Right Story?

Dear Michael,

Long ago I heard an insight someone offered about being a Christian that I have never forgotten. Here it is: You may be the only “Living Bible” some people ever read.

No single phrase I can think of captures as artfully what it means for you to be an ambassador for Christ. To the majority of non-Christians in your life, you are their link to the only truth that can impart eternal life.

You are like the Corinthians who Paul referred to as “our letter…known and read by all men…cared for by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of human hearts” (2 Cor. 3:2-3).

Your life is a letter. Your life is read by all men. Your life is written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

The Circumstantial Case for the Christian Worldview

The Circumstantial Case Against Phil Spector
On September 26th, 2007, the murder trial of Phil Specter ended in a mistrial. Two jurors were unable to find Spector guilty of murder. In spite of the many pieces of circumstantial evidence that made up the cumulative case, these two jurors focused on single isolated issues (more on this HERE) and these single issues proved to be the downfall of the prosecution’s case.

Just a few days later, a cumulative, circumstantial murder case of my own came to a very different conclusion. Our jury returned a guilty verdict in a 23 year old case in the city of Torrance (you can download a Word Document of the news coverage HERE and HERE). Like Phil Spector, our case was cumulative in nature, originally built on a large number of circumstantial pieces of evidence, all of which pointed to the killer, a man named William Marshall. But unlike the Spector case, our jury had been carefully picked as a part of the judicial process. We interviewed the prospective jurors carefully, and seated a panel that understood the value of circumstantial evidence and also understood the power of a CUMULATIVE case.

Cumulative, Circumstantial Cases
Our jury was instructed over the course of four days as we interviewed and screened the candidates. From the prosecution’s perspective, we wanted jurors who understood how powerful circumstantial evidence can be when taken cumulatively. Circumstantial evidences, by definition, are unrelated facts that, when considered together as a whole, can be used to infer a conclusion about something that was previously unknown. In this sense, circumstantial evidence is different than direct physical evidence. Let me give you an example. If you are sitting in a restaurant and someone comes inside and tells you that it is raining outside, you now have an eyewitness and you have direct physical evidence that it is raining. On the other hand, if you are sitting there and you see several people come in carrying umbrellas and dripping wet, you may reasonably infer that it is raining from this circumstantial evidence, even before any of them tells you that this is true. You see, all of us assess circumstantial evidence as a part of our normal experience.

As we selected our jury for the homicide trial, we simply wanted people who (1) understood the power of circumstantial evidence and (2) would not fixate on minutia. We wanted jurors who would not ‘major on the minors’ but were capable of seeing the ‘big picture’. We were trying to avoid jurors like the two hold outs in the Spector case; jurors who would ‘camp’ on minor ‘possibilities’, while ignoring the major ‘reasonable’ inferences. We wanted jurors who could understand the difference between what is ‘possible’ and what is ‘reasonable’.

Read more


Resource: PleaseConvinceMe.blogspot.com

The Problem of Evidential Insufficiency

OBJECTION: God's existence cannot be known with evidential certainty. The evidence for God's existence is entirely circumstantial and therefore cannot be trusted. There are no items of direct evidence that can be examined today to determine if Christianity's claims about God are true.


The Answer Lies in Our Perception of Evidence
There are two kinds of evidence that are used in criminal and civil trials each and every day across America: 'direct' evidence (evidence that proves something 'directly' on the basis of someone's first-hand experience) and 'circumstantial' evidence (evidence that proves something 'indirectly' on the basis of a reasonable inference). We might determine, for example, that a suspect committed a murder on the basis of an eyewitness who saw the murder directly or a suspect's later confession (two pieces of direct evidence), or we might determine this on the basis of the suspect's prior threatening remarks, his bloody appearance minutes after the crime, and his efforts to flee the scene (all examples of circumstantial evidence). Our criminal justice system draws no distinction between these two forms of evidence; both are equally viable and powerful in making a case.

The Reliability of the Gospel Eyewitnesses

500th Post! Presuppositions Can Lead to Mistaken Conclusions

Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Posted by Al at PleaseConvinceMe.blogspot.com

Presuppositions can have a profound impact on the beliefs that we hold. I was reminded of that recently while listening to a podcast from the UK called "Unbelievable." Jim mentioned it not long ago on one of his podcasts and I quickly became a big fan. The usual format is a debate between an atheist or agnostic and a believer. The podcast I was listening to was a discussion between Michael Licona and Bart Ehrman.
Ehrman is a well-credentialed former believer. He's the kind of Biblical expert that causes many Christians to experience pangs of doubt. After all, he's studied the Bible in far more detail than the vast majority of us, and in the original languages. He was once a believer himself, so maybe his journey away from faith is one to greater knowledge. Or maybe it's something else - the product of the presuppositions that shape his worldview.

Monday, 1 August 2011

The Golden Rule

The question is, which Golden Rule has ground?

Jesus mentioned this rule because he wanted his disciples to remember the Law of the Prophets when it says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbour as yourself." (Lev. 22:37-40)
Jesus was narrowing all the Levitical commandments to just the two most important ones. If you love God, all the rest just come naturally from your heart.

How Can a Loving God Kill People in the Old Testament?

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Grow Up. Settle Down. Keep Reforming. Advice for the Young, Restless, Reformed

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

by John MacArthur

It has been five years since Christianity Today published Collin Hansen’s article titled “Young, Restless, Reformed.” Hansen later expanded the article into a book with the same title (Wheaton: Crossway, 2008). He has carefully documented a very encouraging trend: large numbers of young people (college age and younger) are discovering the doctrines of grace, embracing a more biblical and Christ-centered worldview, and beginning to delve more deeply into serious theology than most 20th-century evangelicals were prone to do.

In short, Calvinism, not postmodernism, seems to be capturing the hearts of Christian young people.

Read more

Part 2 of Grow Up Advice for YYRs

Resource: www.gty.org/Blog

Saturday, 23 July 2011

The Shroud of Turin


by Petri Paavola

There are various opinions and researches of the shroud of Turin. Some people say that it is the genuine and some that it is the fake and the hoax. The fact is that the shroud of Turin doesn't present Jesus of the Bible. If we can find even one evidence, which disprove the shroud of Turin theory, so the whole story shall be invalidated. We can find a large number of evidence from the Bible, which show that the shroud of Turin cannot be the shroud of the Lord Jesus.

Read more


Resource: koti.phnet.fi/petripaavola/shroudofturin

Love your Fellowmen

"Love your fellowmen, and cry about them if you cannot bring them to Christ. If you cannot save them, you can weep over them. If you cannot give them a drop of cold water in hell, you can give them your heart's tears while they are still in this body."

C.H. Spurgeon

Friday, 22 July 2011

Logical Fallacies in Argumentation

by Matt Slick

There are different kinds of logical fallacies that people make in presenting their positions. Below is a list of some of the major fallacies. It is a good idea to be familiar with them so you can point them out in a discussion, thereby focusing the issues where they belong while exposing error.

It is true that during a debate on an issue, if you simply point out to your "opponent" a logical fallacy that he/she has just made, it generally gives you the upper hand. But then, merely having the upper hand is not the goal: truth is. Nevertheless, logical fallacies hide the truth, so pointing them out is very useful.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

The Lost Tomb of Jesus?


by Petri Paavola (Edited grammar for clarity)

We are living in a time when many Bible prophecies are being fulfilled. We also live in time, which is very near to Yeshua's (Jesus) second coming. For this reason, many people attack with all powers of evil against the Bible's message, and these attacks will increase. These false attacks also use modern technology as "help" in order to spread their lies. However, in vain the world tries to invalidate the depiction in the Bible of Yeshua as the Messiah. God has built the evidence of His word on the everlasting foundation, which will never fall, but will stand and is valid for ever. One attack against the word of God is a documentary film, "The Lost Tomb of Jesus" (director James Cameron) and book The Jesus Family Tomb (written by Simcha Jacobovici and Charles Pellegrino). The documentary and book tell about the same subject "The Jesus Family Tomb". But when we research this sensation closer, and we notice it is only a sensation, filled with assumptions and absolute lies, which try to negate the truth about Jesus Christ which is in the Bible.

Read more


Resource: koti.phnet.fi/petripaavola/TheLostTombofJesus

Wretched Sarcasm

My Comment on Todd Friel on Craig Gross (XXX Church)
Please, Brothers. If we have a disagreement let's not call names or scold each other. This is a problem with our old selves. We must do away with our old selves; the quarrelling, pride and selfishness. We have our problems, so let's reason with each other with respect and love. Be merciful as our Lord!

This is not only for Todd Friel, but for you as well. I know Todd means well and he has a good heart. Maybe he misjudged. Forgive him. If you can't forgive, then how can the Lord forgive you? Matthew 18:33

A Comment from a viewer:
My heart breaks when I listen to Todd and his sarcasm. He has a heart for others to know Christ but it's hard for people to see past his pride. I listened to him a lot in Minnesota but his style eventually wore on people (including me). Todd - I forgive you.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Can We Do Anything to Deserve God's Blessings?

By Matt Slick (Anglicized)

The answer depends on how you define "Blessing" and in what context it is used. One on hand, we can do nothing to earn God's grace. Grace is the undeserved blessing of God. On the other end, God rewards us for being faithful to Him and this could be called a blessing as well. So, the answer very much depends on how the word is used, and in what context.

All the blessings that any of us receive from God are ultimately and only the result of the cross of Christ. There is nothing we can do to earn the favour of God in any way. God loves us and blesses us not because of who we are or what we can do, but because of who He is and how great His love is for us.

Once we are redeemed, we can honour God by being faithful to His word and by preaching the gospel. We are blessed by God in doing this, but the blessing is not a contributing factor towards salvation. Instead, this blessing is a result of our salvation and can also be a result of simply obeying God.


Resource: carm.org

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

United Church of Canada Forces Civil Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage

Of Love and Justice: Toward the Civil Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage is a book developed by The United Church of Canada.

Of Love and Justice was developed by The United Church of Canada in response to resolutions passed by the 37th General Council that called on the church to affirm lesbian and gay partnerships, to work for their civil recognition, and to recognize them in church documentation and services of blessing. This resource offers four workshops to help a congregation or a group within the congregation to explore civil recognition of same-sex relationships from a faith and justice perspective. In addition, the resource offers a process for congregational decision making on same-sex covenanting.
united-church.ca

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary (The Errors of Roman Catholic Theology)

by Mike Abendroth at NoCompromiseRadio.com

For False-Friday, Pastor Mike continues in the series continues on what Roman Catholics believe and how what they believe is incongruous with Scriptural truth. Today Mike focuses on Mary (the mother of Jesus) and how the 2 views of her vary radically.

The Roman Catholic church believes that Mary is a co-mediatrix/co-advocate with Christ. This is patent heresy - scripture clearly teaches that Christ is the sole mediator/advocate before God for believers:

  1. Romans 8:34 - Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
  2. 1 John 2:1 - My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.
  3. 1 Timothy 2:5 - For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus
  4. Hebrews 9:15 - Therefore he [Christ] is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.
  5. listen in for other verses...

Study carefully what the Bible says - no matter what your religious beliefs are, you would be wise to adhere to 1 Thessalonians 5:21 "examine everything carefully". Don't trust what you've learned growing up. Trust in the truth found in God's Word.

Click here to listen

(you may also listen to part 1, part 2, part 3, and part 4)

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Does God Love His Enemies?

Wednesday, July 06, 2011
Tommy Clayton
Content Developer and Broadcast Editor, GTY.org/Blog

I can still remember the chair I was sitting in years ago when I read a life-changing page in John MacArthur’s book The God Who Loves. In an economy of words, John exposed, confronted, and changed my thinking on one of the most critical areas of theology, the nature of God. My understanding of God’s love—specifically His love for the non-elect—was never the same.

For months, I had been wrestling with the question of whether God’s love extends beyond those He chose for salvation. “Does God love all humanity, even the Judas Iscariots and Adolf Hitlers of the world?” At the time, I couldn’t answer that question with any degree of certainty. And although I was sitting under sound biblical teaching, I had begun entertaining the idea that God’s elect have a monopoly on His love. I couldn't reconcile the idea of God loving His enemies with the following texts:

  • Psalm 5:5, “You hate all workers of iniquity.”
  • Psalm 7:11, “God is angry with the wicked every day.”
  • Psalm 26:5, “I have hated the assembly of evil doers.”

Beyond those troubling texts, I was grappling with God’s explicit statements about hating Esau found in Romans 9 and Malachi 1. “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.” You have to admit, that’s a hard verse to refute. God’s hatred was unrelated to Esau’s conduct or character. It was rooted in His eternal, sovereign purposes.

Read more


Resource: www.gty.org/Blog/

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Is Amway a Cult?

Written by Hoagland at cocs.com

The "cult of confession" refers to the idea that by confessing your sins you will become a stronger (or more spiritual) person. By confessing it, all of the "badness" inside you will be released. If you are a leader, this confession becomes a delivered, well-rehearsed, and well-practiced speech designed specifically to make you more relate-able to your audience. You are not really sharing a "dirty secret," but the audience believes you are. The more you "confess," the more "human" you become to the audience. Soon the audience begins to believe that, since the leader was once a "lowly person" like them, they too can achieve his position. On the other hand, when a new person is first introduced to the group, his confession "can and will be used against him" later. He will be shown that there is only one way to achieve his dreams and goals: becoming an active member of the group. "After all," the members say, "how have you achieved your goals so far? Our way is so much better than what you have."

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Is God a Fair Judge?

In an interview with Ravi Zacharias, Lee Strobel shares in his book The Case for Faith:
Edited for the reader (Some words marked in parenthesis. Eg: I replaced as [Lee]; and anglicized to Canadian English)

So What About Gandhi?

"He didn't follow Jesus," [Lee] said, "so I suppose you would say he was not redeemed."

"That is something that will be determined by God," Zacharias replied. "However, what is it Gandhi believed? He summarized it in one statement: 'God is truth and truth is God.' My question to him would be, 'What does that mean?' We are sitting in a room; that is a true statement. What has this got to do with whether this room is god or not? It doesn't. It only conforms to a statement I have just made. God exists--is that a true statement? If that is a true statement, who is this God?"

[Lee] interrupted. "Yet here you have a person like Gandhi, who in the eyes of most people lived a good life, whereas a serial killer like David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam, murdered several innocent people and now says he's prayed a prayer to become a Christian. Christians would say Berkowitz is going to heaven but Gandhi isn't. Where's the equity in that?"

Bill O'Reilly: Is There a Hell?



This article is full of sarcasm. I don't like sarcasm. But ... here we go.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Joel Osteen

[Edited for accuracy on September 12th 2012.]
An Inspiration to Millions

Joel Osteen is a native Texan and the Pastor of Lakewood Church, which according to Church Growth Today is America's largest and fastest growing church. On July 16, 2005 after completing $95 million dollars in renovations, Joel moved Lakewood Church into its new 16,000-seat home - the former Compaq Center. It is the largest regularly-used worship center in the United States. Each week Joel delivers God's message of hope and encouragement to more than 38,000 attendees. According to Nielsen Media Research, Joel is the most watched inspirational figure in America. His weekly sermon is broadcast into every U.S. television market where it is viewed by seven million Americans each week and more than 20 million each month. His weekly broadcast is also seen in almost 100 nations around the world.

Are You This Dog?

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Forged?

Bart Ehrman
Ehrman's the kind of guy at work who order's coffee for everyone at work. He assumes that everyone drinks coffee because most adults do at his work. He even considered the Mormon and bought him a juice instead. But he didn't bother to ask me, because I don't drink coffee nor do I like the taste. He didn't know that because he never asked me. It's like saying cats are animals and dogs are animals too, so therefore dogs are cats too. Logically it's correct, but it's not sound at all because the facts aren't correct. It's not looking at the facts. This is a common logical error.


In his book, Forged, Ehrman makes claims without supporting evidence--assumptions on cognitive content. The facts he uses are irrelevant! He takes historical facts of that time to make his claim seem to be true. His biggest argument is that the authors of the Bible are not who we think they are because the manuscripts have been "forged." He assumes that since that only the rich and powerful could only afford a secretary in those days then these manuscripts must have been altered.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

The Historical Reliability of the Gospels

By Craig L. Blomberg

Can the major contours of the portraits of Jesus in the New Testament Gospels be trusted? Many critics would argue not. The Jesus Seminar became the best-known collection of such critics during the 1990s as they alleged that only 18 percent of the sayings ascribed to Jesus and 16 percent of his deeds as found in the four canonical Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, plus the apocryphal Gospel of Thomas, bore any close relationship to what he actually said and did. At the same time, a much more representative cross-section of scholars from about 1980 to the present has inaugurated what has come to be called the Third Quest of the Historical Jesus, in which a greater optimism is emerging about how much we can know, from the Gospels, read in light of other historical cultural developments of the day.....

Read more


Resource: 4Truth.net

The Inerrancy of the Bible

By Norman L. Geisler

The Bible is inspired, but is it inerrant, that is without errors? The reason for a positive answer is simple: The Bible is the Word of God, and God cannot err; therefore, the Bible cannot err. To deny the inerrancy of the Bible one must either affirm that God can err or else that the Bible is not the Word of God.

Read more


Resource: 4Truth.net

Why All the Translations?

By Denny Burk

When one wanders into the Christian bookstore to buy a Bible, the sheer number of versions available can be quite overwhelming, and yet many Christians have no criteria by which to evaluate which translation is the best. This essay proposes to set forth some of the historical reasons for new translations and to explain some of the different translation philosophies that drive the production of so many different versions in our own day. Thus, we must address the question posed in the title of this article from both a historical and a philosophical perspective. Historically speaking, we are compelled to consider why there has been such a proliferation of English translations of the scripture. The question emerges why each generation undertakes the task of translation. Also, we need to have an idea about the different philosophies of translation. We need to understand what it is that causes the various English versions to differ from one other in significant ways (especially the modern ones).

Read more


Resource: 4truth.net

Saturday, 21 May 2011

“Evaluating Youth Ministry – An Abolitionist’s View ” by Voddie Baucham

Posted on May 19, 2011 by Pilgrim

Are you a YMA (youth ministry abolitionist)? Perhaps after listening to this sermon by Voddie Baucham, entitled Evaluating Youth Ministry: An Abolitionist’s View, you too will join the growing ranks of those who are abandoning the train wreck known as youth ministry and return to a family integrated model of biblical worship.


In this message delivered at the 2009 Sufficiency of Scripture Conference, Voddie outlines his three main objections to youth ministry as:

1). Age-segregated youth ministry usurps legitimate authority and responsibility.

2). Age-segregated youth ministry has not accomplished its own stated goals.

3). There is no clear biblical mandate for the current model of age-segregated youth ministry; it simply doesn’t exist. We don’t have our current model of age-segregated youth ministry because we went to the Bible and the Bible showed us clearly that this is how discipleship ought to be accomplished.


Resource: DefendingContending.com

Mark Driscoll, Grow Up!



"Who Does He Think He Is?"
If you want some good reviews of Mark Driscoll. Here's a few links to check out:

John MacArthur on Mark Driscoll

DefCon - I've Had it With Mark Driscoll and His Mouth. Now it's Personal!

John MacArthur on Mark Driscoll - Part 2

"The Gospel is supposed to be the stumbling block and offence, not our behaviour."

"The strongest opposition against striving to live a life of decency and holiness comes not from the world (they’re anxiously waiting to meet a Christian who actually practices what he preaches), but it comes from the very ones who claim to be Christians."
Read more about this topic by Pilgrim at DefendingContending.com.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Is God a Monster?

Tommy Clayton
Content Developer and Broadcast Editor, GTY.org/Blog

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Nearly fifty years ago, the British agnostic Bertrand Russell penned these words: “There is one very serious defect to my mind in Christ’s moral character, and that is that He believed in hell. I do not myself feel that any person who is really profoundly humane can believe in everlasting punishment” (Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian).

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Self, Self, Self

I'm not a sinner. I'm the sinner. That's what you have to get in mind. The Pharisee (the law keeper) beats his chest and looks up to heaven praying out loud in public to God proclaiming all that he has done for the Lord. But the tax collector can't even raise his eyes toward heaven praying, "God have mercy on me, I was born a sinner."

You must come to grips with your own sin before you can see the magnificence of the cross and what Jesus' death and resurrection means to you personally. Daily we must know why Jesus died for us and what he sacrificed and put to death on that cross. Daily we must put to death our egos. Daily we must see the defeat over sin as God's victory and not our own. To God be all the glory and praise! Honour Him with our lives daily; feed the hungry, uphold the rights of the oppressed, clothe the naked. Without love and faith it is impossible to please Him. Daily feed yourself with His word and meditate on it. Daily pick up your cross and follow Him.

Do You Wear A Mask?

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Are You Resentful?

Love
1 Corinthians 13:5
"...It does not insist on its own way; it is nor irritable or resentful;"

Resentful in Greek means to count up wrongdoing. How many things can you find wrong in other people? How about your spouse? I know that if my colleagues knew more about me, they'd be able to criticize me. The more you know about a person, the more that person opens up themselves to you and trust you, the more susceptible they are to scrutiny and criticism from that person in whom they have put their trust.

When someone shares their whole life with you and puts their faith and trust in you, you have the responsibility to protect that information and not use it against them as a weapon. There is nothing gained but pride. When two people are emotionally attached to each other, whether it be mother and son or spouses, they are more sensitive to the criticism from each other.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Turning Work Into Worship - Mike Abendroth

Do you work for the Glory of God?

Since Salvation has done for us and to us, how then shall we live?

How should we work?

Monday, 9 May 2011

Charles H. Spurgeon - Christian Competition

“First, even professed Christians may pursue desirable things by a wrong method. ‘Ye fight and war, yet ye have not.’ Have not churches tried to prosper by competing with other churches? We foolishly say, ‘At such and such a place of worship, they have a very clever minister; we must get a clever minister too. In fact, he must be a little cleverer than the other church’s hero. That is just what we need – a clever minister!’ How awful that we should live in an age in which we talk about clever ministers preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ! How sad that this holy service should be thought to depend on human cleverness!
Churches have competed with each other in architecture, music, apparel, and social status. In some cases, there is a measure of bitterness in the rivalry. It is not pleasant to small minds to see other churches prospering more than their own. Other congregations may be more earnest than we are, they may be doing God’s work better, but we are too apt to turn a jealous eye toward them. We would rather they did not get along quite so well. ‘Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?’ (James 4:5) If there were a disturbance among them that caused the church to break up and die, we would not rejoice. Of course not. But nor would we suffer any real sorrow.
In some churches an evil spirit lingers. God will never bless such means and such a spirit. Those who give way to them will desire to have but will never obtain.”

Friday, 6 May 2011

Jesus Never Said Anything about Homosexuality

By Alan Shlemon
Jesus didn't talk about homosexuality. Does that mean it's okay?

If you’ve ever said that homosexuality is a sin, there’s a good chance that someone tried to correct you with, “Jesus never said anything about homosexuality.” It doesn’t matter what Bible verse you believe bolsters your claim, they believe that Jesus’ silence on the matter trumps all other considerations. But there are a number of reasons why this objection doesn’t work.

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Do YOU Feel the Spirit?


God is everywhere. Not in a room or a certain church. He is everywhere! And His Spirit dwells in every believer!

It's not in a moment or a feeling you get at church. No where in the bible does it explain the experience with the Spirit as a 'tingly feeling.'
Many other religious people would affirm the same thing about their god if all we could say was "I feel His presence," or "I just know because I can feel it." Where is this in scripture? Where is the grounds for your faith then? Feelings are temperate! They come and go. And sometimes they are deceiving!
If you base your faith on emotions, you're sadly mistaken. Don't be mislead by your heart. Don't over-spiritualize every feeling or thought as a divine intervention with God. Read the scripture and pray to Him. That's where you'll 'connect' with the Lord. Jesus doesn't come and go. He is always there.

Greg Koukl - God's Sovereignty and Evil

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The Doctrine of Hell is Waning in Canada

I just read a statistic from a survey done from 23 countries about belief in a god(or gods) and Canada happens to be one the countries where people believe there is no Hell, but rather just Heaven. Although I can attest to that and say that a lot of people think there is a Hell, they'd just rather think that people like rapists, genocidal dictators and terrorists will go there instead of themselves. Read what John MacArthur has to say about the nature and reality of Hell in his blog post titled For Those Who Rail Against Hell.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Rob Bell: Part 4

Bell’s Inferno
If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that religion is a means of gain (1 Timothy 6:3-5).

No one in all the Scriptures had more to say about hell than Jesus. No stern messenger of doom from the era of the Judges, no fiery Old Testament prophet, no writer of imprecatory psalms, and no impassioned apostle (including the Boanerges brothers)—not even all of them combined—mentioned hell more frequently or described it in more terrifying terms than Jesus.

Read more


Resource: gty.org/blog

Christ the Lord is Risen Today

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Atheism and Orthodoxy in Modern Russia

"The Russian nation is a bearer of God... But, it was here that revolution broke out, and it...revealed a spiritual emptiness in Russian people."


THURSDAY, JANUARY 27, 2011
MYSTOGOGY
By Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev

In this talk I propose to outline the history of atheism in Russia during the last hundred years. I will start by considering the kind of atheism present in Russia before the Revolution. Then I will say something about the development of atheism during the Soviet period. And finally I will conclude with some observations concerning the nature of Russian post-Soviet atheism.

I should like to begin with the following questions. How did it happen that the country known as 'Holy Russia', with such a long history of Orthodox Christianity, was in a very short period of time turned by the Bolsheviks into 'the first atheist state in the world'? How was it possible that the very same people who were taught religion in secondary schools in the 1910s with their own hands destroyed churches and burned holy icons in the 1920s? What is the explanation of the fact that the Orthodox Church, which was so powerful in the Russian Empire, was almost reduced to zero by its former members?

I should say at once that I cannot interpret what happened in Russia in 1917 as an accident, the seizure of power by a small group of villains. Rather I perceive in the Russian revolution the ultimate outcome of the processes which were going on within the pre-revolutionary society and so, to a considerable extent, within the Russian Church (as there was no separation between Church and society). I would claim that the Russian revolution was the offspring of both the Russian monarchy and the Church. The roots of the post-revolutionary atheism should be looked for in pre-revolutionary Russian society and in the Church.

Read more


Resource: JohnAanidopoulos.com

Sectarianism and Extremism in Russian Orthodoxy

'Already 10 years ago some of the most rigorous priests would not give sacraments to believers from “less Orthodox” parishes unless they repented and recounted their false beliefs.'

SUNDAY, JANUARY 16, 2011
MYSTAGOGY

Which Road Leads Away From the Church?

Aleksandr Baunov and Ilya Arkhipov
November 26 – December 2, 2007
Russian Newsweek

A young man, recently converted to Russian Orthodoxy, wandered into an ordinary Orthodox church in a Moscow side street. He was approached by an old woman, a donations box attendant, who began to instruct the young man: “You’d better take off that slip-knot. Our Lord did not wear neckties. The Devil lives in these knots.”

An old joke about a lonely Jew on a desert island who built himself two synagogues — one to go to and another one NOT to go to — perfectly fits modern Russian Orthodoxy. Already 10 years ago some of the most rigorous priests would not give sacraments to believers from “less Orthodox” parishes unless they repented and recounted their false beliefs.

There is another church, formed long ago within the confines of the Russian Orthodox Church. This inner church reads its own books, listens to its own authorities, and despises the bishopric. In the language of modern sociology, its followers may be termed “religious fundamentalists.” It’s just like the modern Islamic world, where universal peace is preached in one mosque, while jihad is preached in the one right next door, and both types of worshippers are “good Muslims.”

Read more


Resource: JohnSanidopoulos.com

Gandhi was Wretched... Sorry, Rob Bell!

"For all his lifelong campaign for Swaraj ("self-rule"), India could have achieved it many years earlier if ­Gandhi had not continually abandoned his civil-disobedience campaigns just as they were beginning to be successful."

By ANDREW ROBERTS

Joseph Lelyveld has written a ­generally admiring book about ­Mohandas Gandhi, the man credited with leading India to independence from Britain in 1947. Yet "Great Soul" also obligingly gives readers more than enough information to discern that he was a sexual weirdo, a political incompetent and a fanatical faddist—one who was often downright cruel to those around him. Gandhi was therefore the archetypal 20th-century progressive ­intellectual, professing his love for mankind as a concept while actually ­despising people as individuals.

Read more


Resource: The Wall Street Journal

How Will Religion’s Growth in China Impact its Relations With the West?

"The moral formation offered by catechesis and Christian teaching is a valuable resource for a new generation of youth without a moral compass."

By Tony Blair

There are more Muslims in China than in the whole of Europe. There are more practising Protestants than in Britain. More practising Catholics than in Italy. And an estimated 100 million or more people who consider themselves Buddhists.

I was in a province of China recently where I met the governor - a Muslim - who openly asked about, and was interested in, my Faith Foundation activities. Official Chinese surveys show that nearly one in three Chinese describe themselves as religious. This is not where they were 30 years ago.

Read more


Resource: The Washington Post

Lee Strobel - Why I’m Celebrating my 30th Easter

How do we know Jesus rose from the dead? Here's a snapshot of the kind of evidence that led me to abandon atheism and embrace Christ

I had seen plenty of dead bodies as a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, but I never saw anyone come back to life. That's why I was a skeptic about Easter - until my agnostic wife's conversion to Christianity prompted me to spend two years investigating the historical evidence for Jesus' resurrection.

What I encountered turned me from atheism to faith - and what I've learned since then has only cemented that decision:

First, there's persuasive evidence Jesus was executed. In addition to multiple early reports in the ancient records that make up the New Testament, we also have confirmation outside the Bible. Atheist historian Gerd Lüdemann called Jesus' death by crucifixion "indisputable."

Second, there are resurrection accounts that date back so early they can't merely be legendary. A.N. Sherwin-White of Oxford said the passage of two generations was not even enough time for legend to grow up in the ancient world and wipe out a solid core of historical truth.

Yet we have a creed of the early church (recorded in 1 Corinthians 15:3ff) that confirms Jesus died for our sins, was buried, rose and appeared to named eyewitnesses, including skeptics. This creed dates back to within a few years of Jesus' death - and therefore its underlying beliefs go back even further. It's like a historical news flash!

Concluded historian James D. G. Dunn: "This tradition, we can be entirely confident, was formulated as tradition within months of Jesus' death." To me, this devastates the claim that the resurrection is simply a legend.

Read the rest of the interview at BibleGateway.com!