Showing posts from August, 2008

The Flood of Noah and Evolution

(Lessons from our Youth Group on Sundays.)

his is a brief detour from our detour! No, I'm not being random. The pastor and I were talking about this series, and he encouraged me to take an extra week on it. I decided that time would be best spent looking at the Flood story which spans from Genesis 6:1-9:17. Next time (remember that there is no youth group next Sunday as it is the first of the month and Communion Sunday), we will wrap our evolution mini-series up and then look at another large objection to the Gospel.

Approaches to the Flood
As we study the question as to why people reject biblical accounts, we must remember the state in which they live. What state is this? Look at 2 Corinthians 4:3:

And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

It is vital to understand th…

Follow up - Definitions

I meant to post this earlier.  These are definitions I gave the youth group to help them decifer the odd words I use.  This might help you with this post.

Click picture to enlarge.

Today in History: 1st Christian Worship Service in N. America

According to the “Christian History & Biography” email from 8/2/2008, “The first Christian worship service in North America was celebrated in Florida on August 25, 1563, the feast of St. Augustine. Formally founded in 1565, St. Augustine remains the oldest continuing settlement in the U.S.”

We visited a graveyard of all places while in St. Augustine this summer, and found this interesting memorial:

Objections to the Gospel Part 1a - Evolution

This is a brief detour from our Sunday youth studies on the Gospel. For the next few weeks, we will be looking at two large objections both society and the church place against the Gospel. For now, we will be looking at the "what" of these objections (modernism and postmodernism), then turning to the "why."

Science is a Gift of God’s Common Grace
First, we must be careful of two errors. As we speak of evolution, we must not say we don't believe in evolution, because evolution does occur in nature -- it is simply change over time. When we say we disbelieve, we really mean we disbelieve in Darwinian evolution, which is the basic model of life springing from non-life.

We also must affirm science, as so many folks seem to believe we are somehow "anti-science." Nothing could be further from the truth. Science is a gift of God to all people. While the Fall and the Curse makes living far more difficult, God allows us to study and understand science. S…

Is it okay to study heresy?

I cannot tell you how often I have heard the story told in a pulpit of how bank tellers spot a counterfeit bill. Apparently, the Secret Service has tellers study only true currency. The idea is in knowing the genuine article, a person will be able to spot counterfeit bills more readily.

The spiritual application of this tale is that Christians should only study true things, rather than spending extra time learning about heresy. If the Christian only knows truth, then he will not be tricked by error.

One problem: the bank teller story is a myth. Tellers are given counterfeit bills, as well, so they can learn some of the tell-tell markers of fakes.

I'm currently reading Roger E. Olson's The Story of Christian Theology: Twenty Centuries of Tradition & Reform. He writes of this myth on pages 20-21.
On checking with the Treasury Department's Minneapolis Secret Service agent in charge of training bank tellers to identify counterfeit money... He laughed at the story and won…

Are You Relying on This Kind of Religious Reporting?

This is funny, but the sad reality is that there are Christians believing things about others on just as flimsy evidence.

(HT: Jollyblogger)

Why Did Jesus Have to be the Gospel?

(Part 2 of "What is the Gospel?" -- our youth group Sunday School lesson)

Everyone makes mistakes. We all make the same mistake when it comes to God, though.

Oh Hell
> Does the Bible warn humans of a fate in Hell?
o Some in the last day will hear Christ say, "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels" (Mat. 25:41).

o "Hell and destruction are never full" (Pro. 27:20, KJV)> Hell will be full of the religious elite.
o Of the Jewish transgression of the Lord, the prophet declares, "Therefore Sheol {i.e., "Hell"} has enlarged its appetite and opened its mouth beyond measure, and the nobility of Jerusalem and her multitude will go down..." (Isa. 5:14).

o The Pharisees seemed to be without hope, as well, for Jesus asks them how they will escape their sentence to Hell (Mat. 23:33). > Hell will be full of entire cultures.
o In Matthew 11:23, Christ warns that the entire city of Capernaum wi…

When the Gospel is not the focus...

Hopefully, this will be my last post on the sad situation resulting from the so-called "revival" in Lakeland, FL. A few days ago, Grady at released a harsh look at the Charismatic response to Todd Bentley.

"It was not supposed to end like this" laments Grady in a blog post entitled "Life After Lakeland: Sorting Out the Confusion." (HT: Heidelblog)

Among the questions Grady seeks answers for are the following:
Why did so many people flock to Lakeland from around the world to rally behind an evangelist who had serious credibility issues from the beginning?

Why didn’t anyone in Lakeland denounce the favorable comments Bentley made about William Branham?

Why did God TV tell people that “any criticism of Todd Bentley is demonic”?

Why did a group of respected ministers lay hands on Bentley on June 23 and publicly ordain him? Did they know of his personal problems?

Can anything good come out of this?To the last question, I answer that this is an ex…

For Whom Are You Preaching the Gospel?

Spurgeon  said:
A gospel which is after men will be welcomed by men; but the true gospel of the grace of God needs a divine operation upon the heart and mind to make a man willing to receive into his utmost soul such a distasteful truth.

Pictures, Pictures

Well, I have lotsa pictures to share!

The first picture is of "Lil' Nugget," the infant of yet-unknown sexuality growing in my wife's belly.

The rest of the sonogram pics are here.
Next up are first day of school pics. Mycah is entering the second grade this year, and Sage is entering Kindergarten.

Visit Album.
Finally, pictures of Birthday fun at Mountasia.

Visit Album.

Test Revival with Doctrine

The news of Todd Bentley's separation from his wife is sad but a confirmation.

I say its sad with all sincerity -- divorce is nasty (varying from only somewhat nasty to someone-will-end-up-in-jail kind of nasty) and is not something anyone should have to experience.

Yet, it does evidence a dubious character if the soon-to-be-divorced is involved in ministry.

I don't know why Bentley is having marital issues -- I haven't spoken with him and I haven't read any tabloid accounts. So, I speak in general terms when I say there is a huge red-flag when it is revealed that a preacher's marriage is falling apart.

The issue is not Bentley's marriage, however. The question is why it took this news to wake people up to the fact that there is serious error in Bentley's theology. Is the marriage issue the only indicator that something is wrong in looking up to this man?

Of course not, and it is a shame that he was not denounced sooner. Maybe then he could have gon…

What is the Gospel? (Part 1)

I wanted to post some notes from my Sunday studies with our youth group. The study we began a few weeks ago is centered on the meaning of the word "gospel." (Yes, a topical study, please don't throw any sharp stones!)

The study is divided into four parts:
1. What is the Gospel?
2. Why did Jesus have to be the Gospel?
3. Why does the world reject the Gospel?
4. How should we live in light of the Gospel?This is a study I taught at a retreat at another church, and I divided the parts there to accommodate more of a lecture style of teaching (i.e., "preaching," if you prefer). With my youth, however, I wanted to take things slower - hence, it took us a couple of weeks to finish part one. Because I am posting all of part one today, this post will be longer than the ones to follow.

What does "Gospel" mean?
Simply put, it is an old English word meaning “good news.” In fact, we might as well say “I believe the Good News.” This is not just any “good news;” it is t…

New TV Season of WOTM - Promo

(HT: Ray Comfort)

China Hopes to Get Lucky

The Olympics begin today. Yep, on 08/08/08. At 08:08:08 PM, to be exact. Notice something? So did China - apparently, the number eight is a lucky number in China.

I think they would have better odds if they stopped torturing and killing Christians, but I'm sure they'll attribute each medal to the appropriate deity.

I'm sure you remember the massive number of marriages occurring last year on 7/7/07, and the Halloween-in-June festivities on 6/6/06.

(Incidentally, I think the world will end on December 12, 2012 at 12:12:12, simply because that will be the last time this century this foolishness.)

As believers, we must place our faith in the God who runs the world, not in the superstitious activities of a world who has no hope in God.

Please, as you watch (or don't watch) the Olympics, remember to pray for the persecuted church and to pray for the salvation of lost souls. Do not neglect the government officials, for they, too, are people in need of a Savior.

Good Morning America Interview w/ Chapman Family

(HT: AOMin Blog)

Have a Gracious God

Consider this:

If you have a true faith that Christ is your Saviour, then at once you have a gracious God, for faith leads you in and opens up God’s heart and will, that you should see pure grace and overflowing love. This it is to behold God in faith that you should look upon his fatherly, friendly heart, in which there is no anger nor ungraciousness. He who sees God as angry does not see him rightly but looks only on a curtain, as if a dark cloud had been drawn across his face.

(Martin Luther quoted by Roland Bainton in Here I Stand, pp. 49-50).
(HT: Gospel-Driven Blog)

Todd Bentley Followers Shout Down Gospel Preacher

When a person stands up to preach the Gospel in an open air environment, he can certainly expect to face hecklers and even, at times, persecution.

But what if the Gospel preacher is mocked by those waiting in line to enter a Christian revival service? What does that say about those professing Christ who are attending the meeting?

When Tony Miano (a.k.a., "The Lawman") opened his mouth to proclaim the truth of Scripture, many of the people attending a Todd Bentley service -- people who may have, in other contexts, professed belief in the message of Jesus Christ -- began to chant, mock worship, shout, and verbally attack him to silence the Gospel.

May we each treasure the Gospel and its preaching.

Related post: We Need to Correct Our Bent.