MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Who Are You Telling About Jesus?

July 2nd, 2014 Viewed 1283 times, 1 so far today

The Ordinary Pastor’s Daughter calls it like she sees it:

I was putting my daughter (4) to bed. We were talking about how I was going to visit a family member. She asked me if this person loved Jesus. I told her that I do not think that she is a Christian. Then I invited her to pray with me for her salvation. She complied. Then she sat up, pushed her curly hair back and said, “You know what, you should also go and tell her about Jesus right away. Prayers are good but you need to tell her about Jesus Daddy.” I told her that she was exactly right and that I would.

 

The Modern Christian–Introduction

July 1st, 2014 Viewed 1179 times, 1 so far today

The Modern Christian

One of the catalysts of the creation of this nation was the fact that two very divergent belief systems were rising on the European continent. One of them was the Reformation. Lead by men with famous names like Martin Luther, John Huss, John Calvin, Tyndale and the rest, these men wanted to get the Bible into the hands of the normal people, to let them read the Word of God in their own tongue and to remove from the readings the traditions and false teachings that had spread up in the years since Jesus had left the Earth.

The other was the Enlightenment. This was a strand of people that had taken to science and human understanding to explain those things around them. It was from here that many sought to rationalize the church’s teachings, and it culminated with Charles Darwin’s “On the Origin of the Species” where man had finally found a way to define his existence without the need for God.

While Christians have been battling over whether Evolution as it is taught today is in the Bible or not, what they have somewhat missed is that they have not seen the way that the secularists have shaped the way that we think about our world, and have thereby challenged the Bible and its teachings in such a way that we now attempt to understand our Bible and its commands through a modern and secular lens. This is contrary to what the Word of God teaches us about truth, history and reality.

Walk with me this week as we look into The Modern Christian and understand one of the greatest issues that we face as believers in this modern time.


Image by Indigo6811 used under Standard Restrictions

What Would Happen if Christians Took Over a State and Tried to Create a State Church?

December 19th, 2012 Viewed 2796 times, 1 so far today

churchSo I got to thinking the other day… Since after the ratification of the U.S. Constitution there were multiple states that still had established churches (and some current constitutions still mention God and have qualifications for people holding office—which are mostly not observed), what would happen if Christians of a certain denomination (pick one) all moved to a certain state (again, pick one) enough that they could pass a law or State Constitutional Amendment to establish a state church of their denomination.

Would they be allowed to do it?  If not, what reason could opponents use to justify not letting a bunch of people from establishing whatever they wanted, since this is what the state of the States were after the Constitution?


Image from Stock Exchange used under the Standard Restrictions explained at the link.

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Fundamentalist Atheists—America’s Taliban

December 18th, 2012 Viewed 3502 times

cross2There are many Atheists that are content to live peaceably with their neighbors.  They live and work within this country, and seek no ill will– they just do not believe in the supernatural or any deity.  These are probably your friends, coworkers, and others that many would consider good people.  However, there is a vocal minority of Atheists (I term them Fundamentalist Atheists) that seek to eradicate all religion, and these are the focus of this article.

It doesn’t take long reading Fundamentalist Atheist’s thoughts to find that they believe that Christians are the American version of the Taliban.  They trot out the ideas that Christians are behind unequal rights for gays and telling women what to do with their bodies, and compare that to the Taliban telling women that they are of no worth and that they must veil themselves from head to toe.

What they miss is the fact that on a larger scale, they are actually America’s Taliban.

What is Mary’s Appropriate Place?

December 27th, 2010 Viewed 1463 times, 1 so far today

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In reading different blogs over the Christmas Season, I’ve been struck by two different perspectives on the person of Mary, and wondered where you are in who she is.

Dan Phillips states some good things about Mary, but leads off his What did Jesus (not) say about… His mother, Mary post this way:

I’ve often had two thoughts about Mary:

  1. I dearly hope that her heavenly bliss has not been spoiled by the knowledge of how monstrously men came to pervert her significance and place in relation to her Son. And…
  2. In that view, I’ve thought that my article on Mary in a Bible dictionary might read, “The mother of Jesus. A pivotal yet minor figure in the New Testament, mentioned by name in only four books.”

Though Mary plays a pivotal role, and is portrayed in the Scripture differently than in some modern movies, by the end of the story—the last time we hear about her—she’s practically “Just another disciple.”  We don’t find her enduring the hardships of the Apostles, or doing great things in the book of Acts.  We see that she’s present (as are some of Jesus’ brother’s).

In How Mary Brought Me Back to Jesus, Elizabeth Esther talks in depth about being able to empathize with Mary, and to be able to feel what it must have been like for her.  In Part 2 she stands in contrast to Phillips, above.  She believes that Jesus would prefer that Christians treat Mary with disrespect, and that we can see Jesus looking through of for Mary.

Both views are worth of a read and pondering this season.

Have You Had Enough?

January 6th, 2009 Viewed 3173 times

Church Aisle Header Another holiday season has come, and one thing is certain—we’ve all had a lot to eat.  I’m not sure where the tradition came from, but what I am certain is that this is not just the season for presents and good cheer, it’s also the season to make exotic dishes in the hopes that family will eat them.

Sexual Sin and the Church

December 21st, 2008 Viewed 4382 times

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She is sleeping with her boyfriend, left the church because they were going to discipline her, should they follow through with the public announcement?

That is the situation a church in Florida found itself in this past week as a woman in the church first confessed to a woman in her Bible Study that she was in an immoral affair, and then (ironically) tried to stop that church from declaring what she did was a sin.

Bible Verse Arms Race

May 20th, 2008 Viewed 2379 times

Gospel Reading It doesn’t take long in discussions with Christians (or atheists for that matter) on blogs or forums to witness this strategy.  I like to call it the pile on, but an arms race seems to fit the bill as well.

The definition of this tactic is to provide multiple Biblical texts, in rapid fire style, so as to make responding to them difficult, if not impossible, in a coherent matter:

Christian Atheism

March 20th, 2008 Viewed 5591 times, 2 so far today

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One of the things that is truly fascinating about the atheist movement in America in 2008 is not that there are people that actually believe that the Universe was brought about from nothing, but that they attempt to take morality from Christianity and then claim a secular derivation in order to take ownership of said morality.

For example, not very long ago an atheist decided to raise money for a charity. Why would they do such a thing? The concept of loving your neighbor is a Christian concept, not a secular one. In fact, if you were to derive morality from science, you would end up arguing that the helpless should be left without help so that the fittest may survive.

Are We Too Much Fun?

July 26th, 2007 Viewed 2084 times

One of the hardest questions I think that a church activity has to answer is are we trying to be too much fun.  The question that I believe we are trying to answer, though, is scary in its bluntness:

“Why should someone want to come to my church activity?”

Our answer to this question will say a lot about our ministry, what we think of God and the message that we have to give.  What I find interesting is that traditionally the feature that “sold” Christianity was salvation from sin.  Sure, there’s the promise of Heaven, and the chance to escape Hell, but when a preacher came on the scene and proclaimed the Word, people came forward, lives were changed, and a world was impacted.

Now, we have to hope that we can get a famous person to come.  Or we have to stress about what activities we have planned.  We’re concerned about if children think that we’re fun, and we’re moving as quickly as we can out of the lesson and to the times that we think the kids enjoy more: refreshments, crafts, game time, and openings/closings.  Does something seem amiss here?

Tuesday, Michelle Potter, commented that a community that she was involved with held an all day VBS.  The more I think about this, the more interested I become.  If you start to think about parents sending kids with enrollment forms (relieves the pressure of wondering whether the kids will come back), different classes you could have, more exposure, and leveraging the Christians in the community you think– whew– that’s a lot of work.

But after you get over that, you begin to wonder why we don’t do this more.  Partner churches together.  Maybe make it more than one week.  Esp if you have a church school.

Or are we just not really all that serious about reaching the lost as we say we are?

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.