The Impact of Christian Love

23 06 2015

A believer in Christ is following the beat of a different drummer. The culture in which I live has never seen anything like the reaction of the family and church to the murderer of their loved ones. My attempts at love pales in comparison. The testimonies at the arraignment of Dylann Roof are an undeniable proof that Jesus lives and love is His most becoming characteristic in the lives of His followers.  Pastor Dave

EDITOR’S NOTE: What an incredibly powerful testimony of God’s love and forgiveness the people of Charleston are showing the world! It’s obviously having a great impact on secular media who expected the worst, and instead, found themselves covering the message of the Gospel being lived out in front of them. Thank you Charleston. -Aimee Herd, BCN.

 





Dad, You Leave Big Footprints!

20 06 2015

Image result for footsteps in the snow

A man going from his house to the stable one snowy morning, heard a voice behind him, “I’m coming along, too, papa,” and, looking behind, saw his little son lifting his little feet and planting them carefully in his father’s footsteps. So do the children imitate their parents. “No man liveth unto himself.” Our children walk in our footsteps; so let us take heed how we walk.

Bible Illustrations 

 





If This Is Such A Grievous Sin, Jesus Would Have Mentioned It

16 06 2015
Image result for jesus preaching

A post at Stand Up For The Truth describes the efforts of “progressive Christians” to “use the Bible to promote abortion”. It describes the effort among pro-choice “Christians” to establish the beginning of life at the point when the baby takes his or her first breath (rather than at the point of conception). The post cites an article on The Christian Left Blog (entitled, “The Bible Tells Us When A Fetus Becomes A Living Being”) making a case for life starting when a baby takes its first breath. I’ve already discussed the problems with such a view in a prior post, but I was struck by the final line in the Christian Left blog post:

“In the end, if abortion was such a grievous sin Jesus would have mentioned it.  He said nothing.”

I’ve heard this kind of argument many times over the past few years, applied to any number of behaviors that people are trying to justify or reconcile with the Christian Scriptures. I bet you’ve heard this kind of statement as well. “Jesus said nothing about homosexuality in all of his sermons to his disciples and the masses. If it’s such a big deal, Jesus would have preached on it.” There are many variations of this kind of argument, but all of them seem to miss the point. Jesus’ apparent “silence” on abortion or homosexuality do not result in God’s approval or affirmation of such behavior for the following reasons:

Jesus Agreed:
Jesus already acknowledged the fact that he was in complete agreement with the teaching of the Old Testament unless he specifically delineated a new line of instruction. He did not “come to abolish the Law or the Prophets… but to fulfill them” (Matthew 5:17)

Jesus Observed:
Jesus was a dedicated, devout and observant Jew. You want to know what he thought about homosexuality or abortion? Simple; just look at what other devout, observant Jews would have said. They most certainly would have affirmed the Old Testament teaching (like the teaching on homosexuality found in Leviticus 18:20 and 20:13)

Jesus Said More:
We also know that the gospel writers didn’t capture all of Jesus’ teaching on any of these topics. John said that “there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books that would be written” (John 21:25). Don’t be so sure that Jesus didn’t actually teach against these behaviors.

Jesus Said Less:
But none of this really matters if you stop and think about it. Are we truly going to take the position that any behavior that Jesus did not specifically condemn is therefore allowable and approved by God? Really? How about bestiality? How about pedophilia? Jesus never said anything about these behaviors; you might say that Jesus said a lot less than he could have! Does this mean these behaviors are morally virtuous? Few would agree with that idea.

There are many things that Jesus “said nothing” about. This means very little, however, when you really stop and think about it. As Christians, we need to consider the entire counsel of God before we determine whether or not God’s Word approves or condemns a particular behavior.





The Line

9 06 2015

Image result for crossing the line

Lines are everywhere! There are lines in parking lots to designate the parking spaces. There are lines drawn at intersections so that pedestrians know where to cross the street. There are little, but important, lines drawn on rulers to show units of measure. There are lines drawn on baseball diamonds, basketball courts, and football fields to help the players and referees know if the balls, and players, are in or out.
Lines can be very important. They help us know where we stand. We are either on one side of the line or the other.
Exodus 32 tells us that Moses drew a line. Here’s why: God’s people had participated in a drunken party and had worshiped a golden calf. Drunken idolaters! Moses knew that God demands that people love, obey and worship only Him. In a very courageous move, Moses stepped in front of all those people and drew a line by saying, “Who is on the Lord’s side? Let him come to me. . . .” (Ex. 32:26). That day, many crossed the line by standing with Moses and the Lord.
Jesus, too, drew a line when He called those from the multitude to follow Him. Jesus’ words make a very clear line: either you are for Christ or you are against Him. That same line exists today. We must decide on which side of that line we will stand.
Many choose to stand on both sides of the line. And for those individuals Jesus replies, “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot; I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth” (Rev. 3:15, 16). There is no middle ground with the Lord. In fact, for those who try, it makes Him sick to His stomach. Take a stand on God’s side.

 A Treasury of Bible Illustrations





What does the Sign on the Cross Really Say?

7 06 2015
I found an interesting website called, “Defending Inerrancy”. More than ever, we need to know how to respond to the ones who attack the Bible for the sake of those who may be listening.  Pastor Dave
 
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 1 Peter 3:15
Image result for inscription on the cross

Problem: The wording of the accusation above Christ’s head on the cross is rendered differently in each Gospel account.

Matthew: “This is Jesus the king of the Jews” (27:37).

Mark: “The king of the Jews” (15:26).

Luke: “This is the king of the Jews” (23:38).

John: “Jesus of Nazareth, the king of the Jews” (19:19).

Solution: While there is a difference in what is omitted, the important phrase, “the king of the Jews,” is identical in all four Gospels. The differences can be accounted for in different ways.

First, John 19:20 says, “Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.” So then, there are at least three different languages in which the sign above Christ’s head was written. Some of the differences may come from it being rendered in different languages.

Further, it is possible that each Gospel only gives part of the complete statement as follows:

Matthew: “This is Jesus [of Nazareth] the king of the Jews.”

Mark: “[This is Jesus of Nazareth] the king of the Jews.”

Luke: “This is [Jesus of Nazareth] the king of the Jews.”

John: “[This is] Jesus of Nazareth the king of the Jews.”

Thus, the whole statement may have read “This is Jesus of Nazareth, the king of the Jews.” In this case, each Gospel is giving the essential part (“the king of the Jews”), but no Gospel is giving the whole inscription. But neither is any Gospel contradicting what the other Gospels say. The accounts are divergent and mutually complementary, not contradictory.


This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click he





Unselfish People are Happier People

5 06 2015

Image result for unselfishness

“Psychologist Bernard Rimland, at the Institute for Child Behavior Research in San Diego, has just published a simple test.
“Make a list of 10 persons whom you know the best. After each name write either H (for happy) or N (for unhappy). Then go down the list again, this time writing S (for selfish) and U (for unselfish) after each name. Once you have completed your list, draw a table… count each category, and place the numbers in the appropriate cell.
“When Rimland added up the cases of 1,988 people rated by 216 students in 6 college classes, he found that the happy/selfish category was almost empty (only 78 of the cases), while 827 fell into the happy/unselfish cell. Paradox: Selfish people are by definition devoted to bringing themselves happiness. Judged by others, however, they seem to succeed less often than people who work at bringing happiness to others.
“Conclusion: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”—Cris Cox
365-Day Devotional Commentary, The.

“In the Christian life if not the alphabet, “U” always comes before “I.”





It’s Okay to Laugh!

3 06 2015

Good humor crosses international boundaries and brings different stripes of people together to laugh at the same thing. Enjoy this video from France.  Pastor Dave

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones

Proverbs 17:22








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