A recent article by The Associated Press states that Pope Francis is not making the liturgical "traditionalists" in the Catholic Church very happy. Apparently "the last straw" was his "decision to disregard church law and wash the feet of two girls – a Serbian Muslim and an Italian Catholic – during a Holy Thursday ritual." I guess when you elect a pope who rode the bus to work as an archbishop, you better be prepared for a guy who thinks outside the box.
Jewish and Christian students of the Bible have been given a detailed historical timeline in Scripture. We know that God created Adam and Eve about 6000 years ago. The biblical timeline reveals that Noah was born roughly 1000 years later. Abraham was born close to 1000 years after Noah. David was born around 1000 years after Abraham. And Jesus was born close to 1000 years after David. Christ's miraculous birth took place roughly 2000 years ago, which was about 4000 years after God created Adam and Eve. Do the math. It is laid out clearly in God's Word.
Some Christians in their witness consistently invite unbelievers to "make a commitment to Christ." Other Christians seem to mainly invite people to "believe in Christ." Which approach is correct?
There are plenty of people, especially in America, who feel that Christians place too much emphasis on eternity. But is that a legitimate criticism? Or is it simply man's attempt to try to make Christianity only apply to this life here and now? Interestingly, those who are uncomfortable with the supernatural are also uncomfortable with the biblical teaching about eternity.
Jesus won't mean much to you until you are able to speak about Him in a personal way. It's one thing to say, "This is Easter weekend." It's another thing altogether to say, "Jesus died for me, and rose again for my eternal salvation." So are Good Friday and Easter personal for you, or not so much?
That hypothetical patient represents a dominant mindset in our world today. Many people have become extremely resistant to the idea of propositional truth, not in the area of medicine, but when it comes to God, eternity, sin, and forgiveness. You sound like an "absolutist" if you are overly dogmatic on religious assertions. That was actually the term someone used years ago when suggesting that I present God's Word with less certainty. In fact, people who don't believe that God's Word is "God-breathed" may even think you are arrogant if you present propositional truth with assurance and conviction.
In his book Love Wins, Rob Bell challenged the traditional biblical teaching regarding hell as simply being wrong. Rob's spiritual journey continues to evolve as he now has come out in favor of same-sex marriage. He believes the traditional biblical teaching about marriage is as wrong as hell. So is Rob Bell correct, or is he misguided?
A similar thing happens with temptation and sin. It flashes before us with its appeal and its promises. But the fine print is easy to miss. Adam and Eve missed it, and the "interest rate" in their case was a whopper. King David came to find out how high the interest rate is on sin. Judas had 30 pieces of silver flash before his eyes, and he took the deal. But it cost him so much more than he ever anticipated.
We see it happen everyday, where people walk away from the ones who love them the most. It is mind-boggling. Why would anyone leave a situation where he or she is loved so deeply? And yet, it occurs time and time again all over the world. It is a universal problem.
Your parents played a huge role in what you believe today, and what you choose not to believe. Their presence, or their absence, along with their teaching and their training, have all worked to shape you into who you are today. That's not to say those are the only factors, but they certainly play a major role in whether or not you have been connected to God through faith.
We all have issues, and that includes you. We go through life with these issues, some of which become apparent to us, while others not so much. So the question is, do you realize some of your issues?
You may consider yourself to be a person of great faith....or maybe, you feel like you are the biggest doubter in the world. Most of us would place ourselves somewhere in between. But wherever you are at today in your faith, just know this....Jesus surpasses your faith, as well as your doubts.
The first episode of the mini-series "The Bible" on The History Channel seemed to jump off the screen last Sunday night with spiritual vitality and timeless truth. Three of the key biblical figures from week one were Noah, Abraham and Moses. This dramatic history lesson points us to Jesus....but will you look to Him and believe what God invites you to believe?
"If God really loves me, then He should accept me just the way I am....no matter how I choose to live. After all, everyone is a sinner." Maybe you have heard someone express that sentiment, or perhaps even felt that way yourself. Let's think about that theory.
Today brought one of those rare experiences. You know....the kind where you feel like God just gave you the right words at the right time which were perfect for the situation. And all you can do is bask in the glow of the moment....and praise Him for granting you a golden nugget in your communication of the Gospel message.
No religious organization has a corner on Christ's real presence. You can't box Him in. Jesus goes wherever He wants to go....and one of the places He chooses to go is on the inside of everyone who believes in Him as Savior. Therefore, a Christian can literally say, "My heart is Christ's home."
It has been dubbed the "Hell Ship." It was the Carnival cruise that went horribly wrong two weeks ago after the ship lost power in an engine-room fire. And while it may have seemed like being in hell for the 4200 or so passengers who endured the stench and heat of that arduous journey back to land, there are some notable differences between their ordeal on the cruise ship....and the reality of eternal hell. Here are 7 big differences between Carnival's "Hell Ship" and Hades.
It is truly a startling reality. I am talking about how incredibly easy and natural it is for human nature to be critical of Christians. It is quite remarkable when you just stop and look at it objectively.
If you identify yourself as a Christian, then I assume it really matters to you whether or not Jesus wants you to attend church. After all, He is your King….not just your advisor….or your buddy….but your Lord….and your God. Right?
Do you know the main reason God created you? It wasn't so you could pursue that career....or those hobbies....or that 5-year plan of yours. God created you to worship Jesus Christ....the Son of God and Son of Man. You were made to praise His name.
Many people would be stunned to learn about some past events of Sex Week which are documented in his book....and Nathan states that university officials have defended these activities in the name of "academic freedom." But just how much sexual "freedom" is promoted at Yale, and on what basis is a person or a university able to set any boundary for sexual behavior?
The Boy Scouts of America require all of their members to take an oath promising to be "morally straight." Now the organization appears to be getting pressured to change their previous position on homosexual behavior. And it sounds like they may be planning to cave into the pressure. Maybe a time out is in order here.
You are out in the middle of the ocean....all alone....in a small boat....and dying of thirst. You know that drinking the saltwater will not solve your problem, but only make it worse. So what do you do? You could get a momentary fix by drinking it, but that will only make your thirst stronger. Or you could resist the urge to drink the saltwater.
Some spiritual practices and doctrinal positions held by Christians have definite limitations....and must be handled with care, lest people get the wrong idea about what it means to be spiritually reborn....and what it doesn't mean....and what the Bible means when it states that "God is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9)
Besides for being in the news right now, what do Scientology, Lance Armstrong and gun control all have in common? All three of them reveal the downside of man's controlling nature. All three of them point the finger back at each of us….because each one of us can easily become a "control freak" if we are not careful.