Tag Archive | theology

Caring For The Sick

BY DR. RICHARD D. DOBBINS

 

At some time in our lives most of us will suffer from an illness that does not respond to divine healing.

CARING FOR THE REQUIRE A THEOLOGY OF SUFFERING

If you live long enough, you will need to care for people you love during their times of illness.

For those of us who believe in divine healing, these circumstances pose complex and difficult questions. Why do godly people get sick and suffer? Why aren’t all sick believers healed? We don’t know the answer to these questions.

However, in Philippians 3:10, Paul prays: “THAT I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death.” Here, Paul is praying that he may be able to enter into a fellowship of suffering with Christ. Only when we suffer can we begin to understand what Jesus experienced in His body when He took our sins on himself.

Before the Fall there was no suffering. Sin introduced suffering. As long as we are in our present state we will suffer. It is a normal part of the fallen life. The fall of Adam made the suffering and death of Christ necessary. In suffering we come to terms with our fallen nature. It reminds us of who we are and it reminds us of who God is.

Peter teaches believers that it is helpful to normalize their suffering rather than to catastrophize it (see 1 Peter 4:12,13). Peter says that fiery trials of life are really not strange or unusual. They are just a normal part of life. And they are life’s way of teaching us patience, for Peter says that our suffering is an instrument God uses to purify our faith.

James admonishes the sick to pray, engage in self-examination, and confess their sins (see James 5:13-16). The purpose of that prayer is to keep us from bringing on ourselves any illness or suffering because we are living in a state of disobedience. Once we examine ourselves and confess our sins, we know the blood of Christ cleanses us. We certainly do not need to condemn ourselves when we are ill. Suffering the illness is enough.

Paul shares with us another dimension of the theology of suffering in 2 Corinthians 12:7-9, where he tells about a “thorn in the flesh” that he had. He asked God to remove it, and the Lord told him His grace was sufficient for him and His strength would be made perfect in Paul’s weakness.

CARING FOR THE SICK CREATES COMPASSION

Matthew 9:36 says that when Jesus saw the crowds He was moved with compassion for them.

Compassion is a deep awareness of the suffering of another coupled with the desire to relieve that suffering. People who are aware of the suffering of others but have no wish to relieve it are only
capable of pity. But people of compassion want to do something about the suffering they observe.

The communication of this compassion alone has the power to alleviate the suffering of those you are caring for. Not all medical professionals are people of compassion. However, those who have close
and continuing contact with patients must be compassionate if they are to maximize the healing impact of their work.

Compassion in itself carries tremendous healing potential. Just the touch or presence of a compassionate person enhances the healing potential of the human body. People with gifts of healing are usually people of great compassion.

It is my obligation to have compassion when I approach the sick to pray for them. God does not want us to become indifferent to the suffering around us. He wants to move us with compassion to do something to relieve sickness and suffering. Whenever possible, we should pray for the sick. We never know when our prayer will be the means God uses to heal them.

CARING FOR THE SICK INSPIRES APPRECIATION FOR HEALING

Those in the area of faith and science need to be humbled by the fact that eventually every person we pray for or treat will die. Healing that extends quality life is a gift from God regardless of how it comes to us. And in many instances it is the product of both faith and science.

Many illnesses are stress related. So if you have deeply ingrained mental, spiritual, and emotional ways of reacting to stress that predispose you to illness, the fact that you are healed from one illness is not going to protect you from the invisible way you make yourself vulnerable to the disease process.

The person who knows the Lord and the peace and joy of the Lord is maximizing his or her defenses against stress and putting himself in a strong position for health and healing.

Jesus points to the things we retain in memory the “abundance of the heart” (see Matthew 12:34, 35)-the attitudes, feelings, the way we deal with life, flexibility or rigidity, and says all these factors have an influence on what we choose to talk about.

When God admonishes us to be holy like Him (see Leviticus 11:45), He is challenging us to be as healthy as He is. He is totally alive and totally healthy. So living in a right relationship with God will maximize the body’s potential for life and healing.

CARING FOR THE SICK MAKES ONE GRATEFUL FOR HEALTH

It does not matter how much money you have, you cannot buy your health. Health is a wonderful gift from God.

The enemy wants to make the inevitability of death a myth to us. He does not want us to live in the awareness that our life is limited. Because he knows that if we do, we will begin to value our days, value
our health, and these issues will open us to God.

Caring for the sick is a way of shattering the myth of the enemy. When you see your loved ones experience a lingering illness, the frailty of life and the blessing of health come into clear focus. As long as I know my time here is limited, that I am gripped with a terminal illness called sin and humanity, then God has me where He can talk to me, bring grace to me, and help me to make the most of my days.

Jesus’ command for us to visit the sick (see Matthew 25:31-46) is not only given to help us become compassionate and to bring healing and restoration to them, but also to make us better stewards of our lives and our time. It helps us live our lives for Him and not ourselves.

CARING FOR THE SICK REVEALS THE STRENGTH OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT

One of the amazing things you discover when caring for the sick is the strength of the human spirit. When I was a pastor what amazed me the most was how often I would go into homes hoping to be a blessing to
the sick and leave feeling blessed by the sick.

The strength of the human spirit is awesome, especially when reinforced by God’s amazing grace. I often found better attitudes at the bedside of the sick than I found in the sanctuary on Sunday morning.

People who are physically healthy but spiritually bitter are to be pitied more than the people who are crippled in body but strong in spirit. When you care for the sick you discover the true person. Sickness has a way of revealing who you are.

I remember being so crippled from rheumatoid arthritis that I was unable to put on my own coat or drive my own car. I was only 28 years old. But someone touched God for me. I awoke one morning without pain,
totally free from rheumatoid arthritis.

Jesus is still in the healing business. Just as He has touched others, He can touch you. Open your heart to Him. Acknowledge that your body belongs to Him. Ask Jesus to be glorified in your body.

 

THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY GUIDELINES FOR GOOD LIVING, A PUBLICATION OF THE MEDIA MINISTRIES OF THE ASSEMBLIES OF GOD, VOL. VII, NO. 84. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESARCH PURPOSES ONLY.

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Theology of Men’s Ministry

Theology of Men’s Ministry
Brian Doyle

Understanding the Differences Between Men and Women

We all know that men and women are different.

We have read the book and some of us could write our own book!

How are men and women different, and how are they the same? These are issues that impact society and influence the way we minister to men in the context of the local church. What are the roles of men and women in the church, in the home and in the wider society?

I have become increasingly convinced the last twelve years that our lack of solid theological conviction in this area has hindered our effectiveness in ministry to men and through men.

Every church has “Adult Ministry”, but very few have an effective “Men’s Ministry”.
Can we really lump everyone together and minister to them the same way? More importantly, does our theology allow us to do that? What does the Bible teach about biblical manhood?

Below are several key affirmations that came from a group of evangelical leaders who met in Danvers, Massachusetts in December of 1987. If you would like a copy of the “Danvers Statement” then please request it at no charge at:
brian.doyle@ironsharpensiron.net, Our office will send it to you.

The Danvers Statement was first published by CBMW in Wheaton, IL in November of 1988. Below are printed some of the key affirmations from this statement with the permission of CBMW. Take some time to think through these affirmations and to study the biblical text from which they were taken. How are your theological convictions driving the ministry to men in your local church?

1. Both Adam and Eve were created in God’s image, equal before God as persons and distinct in their manhood and womanhood (Gen 1:26-27, 2:18).

2. Distinctions in masculine and feminine roles are ordained by God as part of the created order, and should find an echo in every human heart (Gen 2:18, 21-24; 1 Corinthians 11:7-9; 1 Tim 2:12-14).

3. Adam’s headship in marriage was established by God before the Fall, and was not a result of sin (Gen 2:16-18, 21-24, 3:1-13; 1 Corinthians 11:7-9).

4. The Fall introduced distortions into the relationships between men and women (Gen 3:1-7, 12, 16). In the home, the husband’s loving, humble headship tends to be replaced by domination or passivity; the wife’s intelligent, willing submission tends to be replaced by usurpation or servility. In the church, sin inclines men toward a worldly love of power or an abdication of spiritual responsibility, and inclines women to resist limitations on their roles or to neglect the use of their gifts in appropriate ministries.

5. The Old Testament, as well as the New Testament, manifests the equally high value and dignity which God attached to the roles of both men and women (Gen 1:26-27, 2:18; Gal 3:28). Both Old and New Testaments also affirm the principle of male headship in the family and in the covenant community (Gen 2:18; Eph 5:21-33; Col 3:18-19; 1 Tim 2:11-15).

6. “Redemption in Christ aims at removing the distortions introduced by the curse.”
In the family, husbands should forsake harsh or selfish leadership and grow in love and care for their wives; wives should forsake resistance to their husbands’ authority and grow in willing, joyful submission to their husbands’ leadership (Eph 5:21-33; Col 3:18-19; Tit 2:3-5; 1 Pet 3:1-7). In the church, redemption in Christ gives men and women an equal share in the blessings of salvation; nevertheless, some governing and teaching roles within the church are restricted to men (Gal 3:28; 1 Corinthians 11:2-16; 1 Tim 2:11-15).

7. In all of life Christ is the supreme authority and guide for men and women, so that no earthly submission-domestic, religious, or civil-ever implies a mandate to follow a human authority into sin (Dan 3:10-18; Acts 4:19-20, 5:27-29; 1 Pet 3:1-2).

8. In both men and women a heartfelt sense of call to ministry should never be used to set aside Biblical criteria for particular ministries (1 Tim 2:11-15, 3:1-13; Tit 1:5-9).

Rather, Biblical teaching should remain the authority for testing our subjective discernment of God’s will.

The above article, “Theology of Men’s Ministry” was written by Brian Doyle. The article was excerpted from www.Man2ManExpress.com web site. August 2016.
The material is copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.
This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”

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How Do We Know God Exists?

HOW DO WE KNOW GOD EXISTS?
BY LARRY ARROWOOD

 

God is not insulted nor intimidated by sincere questions about His existence. He has left His biography around for centuries–I’m speaking of the Bible–and it has been scrutinized by many for thousands of years, yet His nonexistence has not been proven. Many reject His existence with the explanation that they do not want to believe anything that may be in error. All the while they ignore the possibility they are resisting truth, which has its consequences as well. Yet, their rejection is more a rejection of His authority than a rejection of His existence. For the scripture proclaims: “Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish
heart was darkened (Romans 1:21).

But the God of scripture challenges us to “Come and see!” To “Check Him out!” Like a confectionery shop with samples of candy and cookies on the counter, the Lord God says: Psalms 34: 8 “O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.” Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” John 7: 37 “. . Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” Matthew 11:2829 “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”

It has been pointed out that some who have suffered much have difficulty believing in God, while others who have suffered much have drawn from God their strength to endure. Norman Mailer, a survivor of the Holocaust writes: “If God is all good, then he is not all powerful. If God is all powerful, then he is not all good.” Still, Corrie TenBoom testifies that she survived because of her great faith in God.

Down through the centuries, many have voiced their opposition to God’s existence. One writer points out different ones that have spoken against the existence of God, yet shows the conclusion:

French philosopher Voltaire: “The Bible and Christianity will pass in a hundred years.” He died in 1778. The movement and the Bible still stand.

Friedrich Nietzsche pronounced in 1882:

“God is dead.” The dawn of science, he believed, would be the doom of faith. Science has dawned; the movement of Christianity continues.

The Soviet cosmonaut after orbiting the earth announced: “I didn’t see God.” The Soviet Union has since broken apart.

The communist movement defined the Bible as ” . . . a collection of fantastic legends without any scientific support.” One Ukrainian schoolteacher remarked: “God doesn’t exist. Only silly, ignorant old women believe in him.” Communism is diminishing; the Christian faith has never been stronger.

If you want proof in black and white of the existence of God, you may never believe in Him. If you want Him revealed through the five senses it may never happen. Yet we believe in other things which cannot
be known through the senses. Many of us use a microwave oven? Do we see the microwaves? Hear?

Smell? Taste? Feel? Of course not. But do microwaves exist?

We have the cooked food as proof. There is an element of faith the first time we turn the microwave on. Thereafter we continue to trust even though we don’t fully comprehend all the technicalities. A prerequisite for knowing God is faith. We read His Word and believe it. God’s Word says we are sinners. It also says God will forgive us our sins. We accept this by faith, which leads us to obedience of scripture, which then gives God a chance to show Himself true.

Some argue, if there is a God who is all-powerful, why did He allow sin, death, and disease to enter the world? This question overlooks an important issue about man’s ability–his ability to choose. Man chose disobedience. In defense of God, prior to man’s disobedience came the forewarning of God. The freedom to choose is also true about salvation. God stretched out His hands to two sinners crucified with Him that day. One accepted; the other rejected. The former went with Christ that day to eternal bliss. The other went to
eternal damnation, even though he may still not believe in God’s existence. Man has the right to choose; but he must also face the consequences. Yet in the face of obvious proof, mankind will continue to resist God’s authority. “And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk . . . And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory. . . And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds. (Revelation 9:20; 16:9,11).” What more can God do?

 

THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY THE WISCONSIN DISTRICT NEWS, JANUARY-NARCH 2001. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.

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Darwinism: The Fossils Say No

Darwinism: The Fossils Say No
By Arlo Moehlenpah

Fossils

* Fossils are the remains or traces of plants and animals in the earth’s crust.

* Fossils are formed when a plant or animal gets buried rapidly. Most fossils were caused by the world-wide flood described in the Bible.
* There is scientific evidence for the Great Flood.

1. Marine fossils have been found near the summits of nearly all of the great mountain areas of the world.
2. Fossilization requires a sudden burial.
3. Most rocks are sedimentary rocks.

* Fossils are important because they provide the major record of plants and animals of times past. The only direct evidence for or against evolution. The only direct evidence is in the fossil record.
* Fossils usually only reveal the hard parts of a specimen such as teeth, bones, and shells.
* Most of what is seen of reconstructions of men or animals is a figment of imagination, because we rarely know the shapes of soft parts such as the nose, lips, or hair.
* The fossil record is an embarrassment to evolutionists because if evolution were true we should find fossils of transitional forms (often called missing links). The fossil record, instead, is a record of mass destruction, death, and burial by water and its contained sediments.
* Creatures simply appear in the rocks without any evidence of step-by-step changes.
* Darwin recognized the lack of fossil evidence but thought it would be found. In over 140 years since Darwin, billions of fossils have been uncovered but there is still no evidence of a gradual change from simpler to more complex plants and animals.

Dinosaurs

* Dinosaurs are the chief tool of evolutionists to brainwash children on the theory of evolution.
* Dinosaurs are used to sell many things.
* Dinosaurs are so popular they have led to some spectacular frauds.
* At the Dinosaur National Monument near a Jensen, Utah quarry, the fossilized remains of over 2,000 dinosaur bones are exposed as a permanent exhibit in the 200 foot-long sandstone wall.
* The word dinosaur, which means “terrible lizard,” was not coined until several centuries after the English version of the Bible was translated. However, other terms which could mean dinosaur such as dragon, behemoth and leviathan are mentioned in the Bible.
* The fossils indicate that some dinosaurs were huge.
* Man and dinosaurs must have coexisted. Romans 5:12 indicates that there was no death of any kind until Adam sinned. Human skeletons have been found in the same Utah sandstone. Also, dinosaur drawings were made by early tribal artists and traditions of many nations have tales of dragons.
* The leading evolutionary theory for the extinction of dinosaurs is that a large asteroid or comet struck the earth and the resulting dust killed the dinosaurs. A big question left unanswered then is “Why didn’t this dust cloud kill the other animals also?”
* Creationists believe that the lack of available food after the Flood was the cause for the extinction of dinosaurs which could have eaten tons of food daily.
* The earth was different before the flood probably due to the vapor canopy (waters above the water). Man and animals were vegetarians. There seemed to be a warm uniform climate and no extreme seasons. Men lived long ages as evidenced by biblical genealogies.
* The following conclusions can be made regarding dinosaur bones

1. Fossil graveyards all over the world give evidence for a global flood, since fossils are produced by sudden burial.
2. Dinosaurs in Alaska give evidence for a warm uniform climate that existed before the Flood.
3. Change of climatic conditions after the Flood presents the best explanation for the “extinction” of dinosaurs.
4. Dinosaur fossils give credence and confirmation to the dragons, behemoths and leviathans of the Bible.

Mankind

* Dr. Derek Ager, former President of the British Geological Association, admitted “practically every evolutionary story he had learned as a student has now been debunked.”
* For example the “Piltdown man” turned out to be a modern human skull and a jawbone of an ape. These bones had been chemically treated to make them look old and the teeth had been filed down to make them look worn.
* The evidence for Java man was a skullcap, a thighbone found forty-five feet away, and several teeth. Dubois for 30 years concealed the fact that he had found two human skulls close by. He announced at end of his life that skull belonged to a giant gibbon.
* Neanderthal man was fully human perhaps suffering from bone deformities that may have been caused by disease.
* The Bible is clear that the first man was Adam (I Corinthians 15:45) and Adam was made in the image of God. (Genesis 1:27). Jesus is the express image of his person. (Hebrews 1:3). Jesus is the image of the invisible God. (Colossians 1:13-15). Christ is the image of God. (II Corinthians 4:4). Adam was “the figure of him that was to come.” (Romans 5:14)
* There is no such thing as an ape-man. There are fossils of apes, and there are fossils of men, but nothing in between. Men have always been men and apes have always been apes.

THE FOSSILS STILL SAY NO! TO EVOLUTION

 

This article “Darwinism: The Fossils Say No” by Arlo Moehlenpah is excerpted from Steadfast Conference, Indianapolis, IN, October 22, 2004 Jackson, MS, October 29, 2004

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Dark Matter: Has Science Found God?

Dark Matter: Has Science Found God?
Dr. John D. Sims, DD

 

Recently Newsweek magazine published a news article on the subjects of the Big Bang theory and Dark Matter. Other reports have been so bold even to say science may have found the God particle.

All of this started with Albert Einstein and his Theory of Relativity between 1905AD & 1915AD. Within this theory Einstein worked with mathematical equations that indicated the possibility of an invisible energy field that would repel physical matter rather than attract the same.

During the early 20th century scientist developed the Big Bang theory that combined with evolution, as the source of all things made of sub-atomic & atomic matter, within our universe. In this theory of spontaneous combustion there was a giant explosion, which resulted in the creation of the universe. Ever since the Big Bang our universe has been expanding.

In the 1980’s & 1990’s, concerned was raised about gravity and a possible reversal of the expanding universe. The theory was our universe could just expand so far, then with the gravity of billions of stars and solar systems in the universe taking control, our universe would collapse in on its self, creating another Big Bang.

In the 1990’s two teams of astronomers decided to map the expansion speed of the universe to see if a possible collapse had begun. After years of stargazing they made an amazing discovery. The universe is not collapsing; it is expanding at faster and faster speeds. This increase of universe expansion started seven billion years ago and the universe is like a run away freight train running down the tracks.

Once all of this was observed, scientist all over the world started looking for the cause of this big expansion speed up. To date the most likely cause has turned out to be within Einstein’s Theory of Relativity.

In his theory Einstein described the possible existence of a Dark Matter energy field, where this invisible energy field exists throughout our entire universe. This energy field would be something like an invisible mist that has the power to control the universe.

At the same time this Dark Matter, rather than having a gravity to pull in, it should be the opposite and repel physical matter. It is now thought this Dark Invisible Matter is the cause of this ever- increasing expansion of the universe.

At the same time these scientists are now thinking our universe is not alone buy its self, it is one of billions, which cannot be seen.

We Christians who know the truth of the scriptures also know our God is a holy, omnipresent, omniscient, invisible, divine Spirit, who is without form or dimension. From your authors point of view, there could be no better description of this divine Spirit, than that of an invisible, energy, mist field, of some kind, greater than our universe in size and power.

When we think of God in this scope of power and size, a scripture passage instantly comes to mind:

Heb 2:6-7

(6) But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? (7) Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:

For any human to classify our great God and Father of all creation as a mere person, this falls into the category of insane and ridiculous.

Just Astonishing!

From: What Is Truth© Newsletter. June 2012, By Bishop: Dr. John D. Sims, DD

The above article, “Dark Matter: Has Science Found God?” is written by Dr. John D. Sims, DD.

The material is most likely copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.

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Evolution

EVOLUTION
AN ESSAY BY PASTOR ROBERTSON

 

It is a serious mistake to ignore the theory of evolution. By far, the majority of college trained men and women have been taught to accept evolution as a demonstrated fact of science and is being taught to schools and even grade schools of this country.

It has probably contributed more to the prevalent secular and materialistic philosophy of the world today than any other influence. Yet very few people have actually had the opportunity to study the great mass of evidence against the theory, sot in fact, would usually be found to be quite ignorant of the fact that very powerful, contrary scientific evidence does exist.

For that matter evolution is not so much a science as it is of mind. Evolutionists admit that evolution requires eons of time in which to work, and few thousand years of written records that are available
to us do not reveal one real example of genuine evolution taking place. And since no one was present to watch the supposed evolutionary changes of the past, it is manifestly impossible to prove that they actually
did take place. Furthermore, the concept of development with increasing organization and complexity seems to be essentially contradicting to the impregnably established laws of energy conservation and
deterioration. These laws affirm the facts that creation of matter or energy is not now taking place, and in fact, that the available energy of the universe as a whole is continually running down rather than building up.

Therefore, it seems evident that the creation of the universe and its components must have been accomplished and completed by means of processes which are no longer in force and which therefore cannot be observed and studied at the present time. The Bible, of course, also teaches the fact of a creation which has already been completed by God as revealed specifically in Genesis 1.

The theory of evolution on the other hand is essentially an attempt to explain the origin of all things in terms of processes which are still continuing and which therefore can still be studied in the present. It ignores the Bible’s witness to a completed creation and assumes that creation is still going on.

This atheistic theory of evolution has spawned many evil social doctrines. Nietzsche and Marx, both atheistic, were profoundly influenced by the Darwinian ideas of natural selection and the survival
of the fittest. They carried into the social and philosophical realms what Darwin had attempted to apply to the biological realms and concocted their deadly philosophies. From Marx, the world has inherited
socialism, communism, and anarchism. Nietzsche’s philosophy profoundly influenced German political thought and became the basis of the intense German militarism of the past century. Mussolini was a most zealous disciple of Nietzsche and fascism was the result. Nazism was bred in the same cesspool. Evolution is also the beers of many types of immoral doctrines taught by Freud, Russell, and others. The gospels of gloom known as determinism and behaviorism and existentialism have the same foundation. It seems unthinkable that a theory of any kind could have had such far reaching and such deadly effects as teas the theory of evolution.

Organic evolution as usually defined means the gradual development of all forms of life by natural processes from a common ancestral form which itself had arisen by natural processes from complex chemicals in the earth’s primeval ocean. From such primitive, self producing, chemical substances, single-celled organisms developed and from these evolved plants and multi-celled invertebrates. Then came
fishes and insects, later amphibians and reptiles, then birds and mammals, and finally man. But there is an overwhelming scientific objection right at the beginning, namely the imp r the development of living organisms from non-living chemicals in the first place. The notion of spontaneous generation was widely held until demolished by Pasteur and others hundreds of years ago. It is known beyond doubt that there is no such process occurring in the present world – even though a countless number of experiments have been made to discover or develop such a process.

Thus, the evolutionist has had to resort to an explanation terms of an imaginary atmosphere which no longer exists, an imaginary ocean composition which no longer exists, and hypothetical processes which no longer exists to explain evolution of primitive organisms which no longer exist. But of course from the standpoint of the evolutionists, it is quite necessary to insist on some form of spontaneous generation as that is the only way life can be accounted for apart from a creator.

If God were to be admitted at any part of the process, it is far more consistent with the concept of His power and efficiency and certainly that of His grace and mercy to suppose that He would have created the earth and its living creatures fully developed and functioning from the beginning.

Not only does the theory fail to account for the origin of life, but it cannot even provide a satisfactory explanation of the method by which evolution works. Many modern biologists frankly their ignorance of this most important phase of their theory.

In order for evolution to work, it would require a mutation and not just one but thousands. Considering the tremendous number of species of plant and animals in the world, it would seem to demand a most amazing credibility to imagine that this is the method by which evolution takes place. Furthermore, these mutations are almost always recessive when crossed back to the original type. That is another reason why they will not persist in nature. As a result, there are hundreds of qualified scientists today who reject evolution
altogether!!

It is well to observe at this point that the Bible does not teach the fixity of species and for the simple reason that no one knows just what a species is. Few issues are more alive among biologists today than this matter of what constitutes a species. . Certainly according to many definitions of the term, many new species have been creation. Genetic research has proven conclusively that mutations, and hybridization can produce and in fact have produced many distinctly new varieties in both plants and animals. These variations are often
considered new species or even genera by most modern methods of classification. However, all evidence thus far in the genetic field seems to prove conclusively that these agencies of change cannot go beyond certain comparatively narrow limits, and can very definitely not produce new kinds. The Genesis account merely says that each created group was to produce “after its kind” with no clear indication as to what constitutes a kind except the implication that different kinds would not be infertile.

Thus, the Biblical account leaves ample room for just such conditions of change within the smaller groups and stability within the larger groups as indicated by modern discovery. In any case, there is not the slightest evidence that evolution ever has occurred or even can occur across kinds. There is a great deal more evidence opposing the theory of evolution, but at this time we will leave it try. It can be the subject of a later paper.

In closing, it seems evident that if evolution has taken place on any large scale at all, it must have done so at complete variance with the indications of all modern genetic research and indeed with all basic physical law. Most of the proffered evidence for evolution can be better interpreted in the light of the law of deterioration and with far better scientific basis.

 

THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY PASTOR ROBERTSON AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.

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The Missing Day

The Missing Day
Andy Moore

 

For all you scientists out there and for all the students who have a hard time convincing these people regarding the truth of the Bible…here’s something that shows God’s awesome creation, and shows that He is still in control.

Did you know that the space program is busy proving that what has been called “myth” in the Bible is true? Mr. Harold Hill, President of the Curtis Engine Company in Baltimore Maryland and a consultant in the space program, relates the following development.

“I think one of the most amazing things that God has for us today happened recently to our astronauts and space scientists at Green Belt, Maryland. They were checking the position of the sun, moon and planets out in space where they would be 100 years and 1000 years from now. We have to know this so we won’t send a satellite, up and have it bump into something later on in its orbits. We have to lay out the orbits in terms of the life of the satellite, and where the planets will be so the whole thing will not bog down. They ran the computer measurement back and forth over the centuries and it came to a halt.

The computer stopped and put up a red signal, which meant that there was something wrong either with the information fed into it or with the results as compared to the standards.

They called in the service department to check it out and they said “what’s wrong?”

Well, they found there is a day missing in space in elapsed time.

They scratched their heads and tore their hair. There was no answer.

Finally, a Christian man on the team said, “You know, one time I heard about the sun standing still.” While they didn’t believe him, they didn’t have an answer either, so they said, “Show us”. He got a Bible and went back to the book of Joshua where they found a pretty ridiculous statement for any one with “common sense.”

There they found the Lord saying to Joshua, “Fear them not, I have delivered them into thy hand; there shall not a man of them stand before thee.” Joshua was concerned because he was surrounded by the enemy and if darkness fell they would overpower them. So Joshua asked the Lord to make the sun stand still!

That’s right- “The sun stood still and the moon stayed—and hasted not to go down about a whole day!” (Joshua 10:12-13)

The astronauts and scientists said, “There is the missing day!” They checked the computers going back into the time it was written and found it was close but not close enough. The elapsed time that was missing back in Joshua’s day was 23 hours and 20 minutes-not a whole day. They read the Bible and there it was “about (approximately) a day” These little words in the Bible are important, but they were still in trouble because if you cannot account for 40 minutes you’ll still be in trouble 1,000 years from now. Forty minutes had to be found because it can be multiplied many times over in orbits. As the Christian employee thought about it, he remembered somewhere in the Bible where it said the sun went BACKWARDS.

The scientists told him he was out of his mind, but they got out the Book and read these words in 2 Kings that told of the following story:

Hezekiah, on his deathbed, was visited by the prophet Isaiah who told him that he was not going to die. Hezekiah asked for a sign as proof. Isaiah said “Do you want the sun to go ahead 10 degrees?” Hezekiah said “It is nothing for the sun to go ahead 10 degrees, but let the shadow return backward 10 degrees…” Isaiah spoke to the Lord and the Lord brought the shadow ten degrees BACKWARD! Ten degrees is exactly 40 minutes!

Twenty three hours and 20 minutes in Joshua, plus 40 minutes in Second Kings make the missing day in the universe!” Isn’t it amazing?

References: Joshua 10:8 and 12, 13 and 2 Kings 20:9-11.

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark. Professionals built the Titanic.

This article “The Missing Day” by Andy Moore was excerpted from: www.crosswalk.com website. March 2000. It may be used for study & research purposes only.

This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”

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Is There A God?

IS THERE A GOD?
BY BETHANY GRISHAM

 

“93 million miles from the blistering surface of the sun hangs the planet earth, a rotating sphere perfectly suspended in the center of the universe. The ultimate creation from an infinite mind, an unbelievably intricate complex design, a supernatural testimony, an irrefutable sign that there is a God. The size, position, an angle of the earth is a scientific phenomenon to see. A few degrees closer to the sun, we’d disintegrate, a few degrees farther, we’d freeze. The axis of the earth is tilted at a perfect 23-degree angle and it’s no mistake that it is. This allows equal distribution of the rays of the sun, making it possible for the food chain to exist. Or, take for example the combination of nitrogen and oxygen in the atmosphere we
breathe every day. It just so happens to be the exact mix that life needs to prosper. It doesn’t happen on any other planet that way.

You see, the Bible says the invisible things of God are clearly seen through His creation; to believe this is not hard. When the fool says in his heart there is no God, he rejects the truth God painted on the canvas of the night. If there is a design, there is a designer, if there is a creature, there is a creator; if there is a miracle, there is a God!

The Bible claims to be God’s Book. In its themes and structure, in its purpose and direction, it shows a unity consistent only with an omniscient designer. Coincidence would be quite an inadequate explanation of the beauty and the intricacy of the Bible’s texture. Such wonderful design does not happen by chance. “Seen under the microscope of the closest examination, the consistency of Bible themes reveal evidence of God at work..” As an earlier writer aptly put it, “Here is a book written by forty authors, living in different ages, without possible concert or collusion, producing a book, which in all its parts are pervaded by one Spirit, one doctrine, one design, and by one air of sublime authority which is its peculiar characteristic. Such a book is a literary miracle’ It is impossible to account for its existence upon ordinary principles.” Men guess about the future, but cannot predict it with any degree of accuracy; and least of all the distant future.

Old Testament authors foretold future events with such accuracy that it is obvious they experienced divine intervention. The Bible has so much to tell us, which, as human beings, we simply would not otherwise know. My grand-father, Rev. Charles Grisham, known as an outstanding hero of the Apostolic Faith, once told me that the God of the Bible offers precisely this ability to foretell long-distant events as evidence of His existence and of the reliability of His Word. “Ask me of things to come,” said God trough His prophet Isaiah, for “I am God and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times the things that are not yet done.” (Isaiah45:1 1; 46:9-11).

The dozens of unique creatures of this planet reveal the obvious existence of a higher being. They each have their own delicate features carefully designed especially for them – from the sounds they make to the coloration of their coverings. Take for instance, the leopard with its beautiful thick spotted coat, or the zebra with its striking black and white “paint-job.” God created many varieties of birds – from the funny looking, hot pink flamingo, standing approximately four feet tall and weighing a whooping eight pounds, to the intimidating bald eagle that eyeballs its prey on the ground while in flight, or from a high perch (hence, “eagle-eyed”) and captures its victims with strong feet and sharp talons. There is a reptile that has heat-sensitive pits between its eyes and nostrils, which help it locate its prey, even in total darkness. There is a certain type of bat that also has a special sense called, “echolocation.” It enables them to navigate and locate and capture prey through the high frequency sounds they emit. The gregarious dolphin, (my favorite,) is socially interactive, showing signs of considerable intelligence and having its own complex language. There are so many various types of amazing creatures walking the earth that specialists have tried to fit each one in a certain class to identify them all. It is a given. .. the Creator of this world has been
unbelievably creative with His magnificent creatures!

Protestant theologian, James I. Packer, of Regent College, argues on behalf of this category of miracles. “They have told us that a miracle is God, suspending an overriding natural law,” Packer says in a
Christianity Today interview. “But that is a secular definition, reflecting a deistic world-view – a view that sees God’s world as a closed box of forces from which the creator is ordinarily standing at a distance, uninvolved. Instead,” Packer says, “the Biblical view is that god remains directly involved in all of life’s events, great and small, regular and irregular. Describing miracles as ‘signs and of cancer called “Hodgkins Lymphoma” (the worst kind for my age group). The exact moment I received the news, a feeling came over me like I will never be able to explain. It was a soft embrace of assurance that held me, and a quiet voice that whispered, “you will be alright.” During three weeks of blood work, x-rays, and CT-scans, I kept my thoughts on that feeling. Even after a bone marrow procedure too painful to put into words, I could still hear that voice and feel that embrace, letting me know that everything was under control. On the day that my parents and I were to schedule the first chemotherapy session, we received a “sign.” Not only did I receive God’s power and mercy in my life with the news that the latest test showed I was completely cancer free, but the disease had seemed to disappear right before their eyes. To this day, the medical field has no explanation.

I decided to write this paper because I am a firm believer in God. If there was no God, I believe I would be bald, weighing about eighty pounds and vomiting into a trashcan. God gave me this miracle so that I would be a living, breathing, healthy testimony of His existence. It is also clearly seen through His incredible Word, accurately designed by Him, and His beautiful creation that cries out, “He lives!” from every corner of the earth. Atheism has never created an artistic masterpiece, never healed a fatal disease, nor calmed a fear. Atheism has never given answers to our existence, peace to a troubled mind, or even dried a tear. It’s God who created the heavens and the earth and Rung the stars in space. It’s God who designs, God who creates, and God who heals!

1 Carman. “There is a God” R.I.O.T., The Sparrow Corporation, 1995.

2 Prather, Paul. Modern-Day Miracles: How Ordinary People Experience Extraordinary Acts of God. Kansas City; Andrews and McMeel, 1996.

Bethany is the daughter of Rev. & Mrs. Mark Grisham of Dallas, Texas. She is the Grand-daughter of Rev. & Mrs. T.L. Craft of Jackson, Mississippi, and Rev & Mrs. Charles Grisham of Detroit, Michigan. This
article is reprinted from the apostolic Writers ‘ Digest, and was written for Bethany ‘s high school composition class.

 

THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY THE MISSISSIPPI TORCH, JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2001, PAGES 11, 16. THIS MATERAIL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.

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Astrology

Astrology
David K. Bernard

 

“Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain” (Jeremiah 10:2-3).

Definition
Astrology is “divination that treats of the supposed influences of the stars upon human affairs and of foretelling terrestrial events by their positions and aspects.”‘ Divination is “the art or practice that seeks to foretell or foresee future events or discover hidden knowledge usu. by means of augury or by. . .supernatural powers.” Sorcery is “the use of power gained from the assistance or control of evil spirits esp. for divining,” while witchcraft is in act or instance of employing sorcery?’

Scriptural Teaching Against Astrology
The Bible opposes all forms of witchcraft, sorcery, and magic, which by definition include fortunetelling and divination. (By magic we mean heathen and demonic practices, not sleight of hand, optical illusions, or other tricks presented merely for entertainment.) This scriptural prohibition includes astrology, since astrology is a type of divination.

Witchcraft is a work of the flesh that leads to damnation (Galatians 5:19-21). All sorcerers shall have their part in the lake of fire (Revelation 21:8). Paul cast out an evil spirit of divination that possessed a woman in Philippi, and the preaching of the gospel inspired the burning of many occult books in Ephesus (Acts 16:16-18; 19:18-20).

Deuteronomy 18:9-12 says, “When you enter the land the LORD your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or cast spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD, and because of these detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you” (NIV).

In Jeremiah 10 the LORD told His people not to learn the ways of heathen nations. Specifically, He instructed Israel not to pay any attention to astrological signs in the sky or to worship idols.
In Isaiah 47, God condemned all forms of witchcraft, explicitly including astrological prediction. This chapter describes the fall of Babylon, a city noted for its astrologers, magicians, and soothsayers. “You have trusted in your wickedness and have said, ‘No one sees me.’ Your wisdom and knowledge mislead you when you say to yourself, ‘I am, and there is none besides me.’ Disaster will come upon you, and you will not know how to conjure I away. A calamity will fall upon you that you cannot ward off with a ransom; a catastrophe you cannot foresee will suddenly come upon you. Keep on, then, with your magic spells and with your many sorceries, which you have labored at since childhood. Perhaps you will succeed, perhaps you will cause terror. All the counsel you have received has only worn you out! Let your astrologers come forward, those stargazers who make predictions month by month, let them save you from what is coming upon you. Surely they are like stubble; the fire will burn them up. They cannot even save themselves from the power of the flame. Here are no coals to warm anyone; here is no fire to sit by. That is all they can do for you—these you have labored with and trafficked with since childhood. Each of them goes on in his error; there is not one that can save you” (Isaiah 47:10-15, NIV).

The Book of Daniel also shows the bankruptcy of these Babylonian occult practices. The astrologers, magicians, and soothsayers could not understand or reveal God’s truth to the Babylonian king (Daniel 2:27; 5:15).

Job proclaimed his innocence of sun and moon wor-ship (Job 31:26). King Josiah of Judah eliminated the wor-sip of the sun, moon, constellations, planets, and stars (II Kings 23:5). One of Israel’s sins was the worship of stars ( Amos 5:26; Acts 7:43).

False Science
Astrology is based on a false understanding of the universe from the perspective of true science, as the following points demonstrate.

*The whole system assumes that the sun circles the earth. Predictions are based on the star constellations that appear in the path of the sun as it supposedly travels around the earth. However, we now know that the earth revolves around the sun and that the sun does not actually travel from one constellation to the other.

*The earth wobbles unevenly as it spins on its axis. Therefore, in our day the sun appears to enter each constellation one month earlier than it did when the astrological charts were invented centuries ago. Even if astrology were valid, one’s horoscope would be one month earlier than astrologers say. Yet people claim to see great truth in the horoscopes assigned to them.

*Thousands of stars have been discovered since astrology was invented, yet astrology does not consider their possible influences.

*For many weeks of the year no constellations appear north of the Arctic Circle. Do Scandinavians, Eskimos, and Siberians born under these circumstance not have a horoscope?

*Different religions have contradictory astrological systems. Which system is correct, the one used in the West, the one used in the Far East, or yet another?

*The primary force by which one body in space acts upon another is gravity. Yet the sun and moon’s gravitational pull on the earth each outweighs by far that of. all stars and planets combined.

* Astrology is based on the moment of birth. Does this mean a mother can change her child’s personality by choosing a Caesarean birth? Why would not the moment it of conception be more significant than the moment of birth? (Of course, this would put astrologers out of business since no one can determine the moment of conception.)

* Astrology does not know that the earth is a sphere instead of a flat surface. Two persons may be born at the same time but in opposite hemispheres under totally different astronomical conditions.
In view of astrology’s faulty scientific basis, how can some find great predictive value in it? Most are gullible and deceived. Astrology’s descriptions are so general that someone who wants to believe in them can usually find a resemblance to real life. Moreover, astrology can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. If someone believes his horoscope he will act accordingly. His attitude towards himself and the world around him will significantly influence his actions and others’ reactions to him.

When astrologers have predicted specific events, they have often been wrong. Even the most famous diviners of today have made many documented predictions that failed to come to pass. In general, their predictions are no more accurate than any educated guesswork. According to the Bible, if a prophecy fails to come to pass, then the prophet is false (Deuteronomy 18:20-22). We must also recognize that some astrologers and fortunetellers operate with satanic powers (Acts 16:16-19).

There is No “Godly” Astrology
Some claim that there is a true or godly astrology and a false or satanic astrology. However, the scriptural references we have given link all astrology with evil and prohibit all astrological speculation or prediction. Nowhere does the Bible associate astrology with God. We cannot trace the origin of any astrological system to God but only to pagan religions.

God made the sun, moon, and stars as lights, as rulers over night and day, and for signs, seasons, days, and years (Genesis 1:14-18). They are rulers over night and day because they bring light into an otherwise dark world. They are for signs because they serve as navigational aids and location finders. They are for seasons, days, and years because they determine and display the progression of days, months, seasons of the year, and years. There is no astrological significance to these functions.

Psalm 19:1 states, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” This psalm speaks of God’s creative power as displayed in nature. Through the testimony of creation itself we can know that God exists and we can learn much about His character and power. “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead” (Romans 1:20, NKJI). Psalm 19:1 and Romans 1:20 express the same basic truth, and it would be a distortion of the Bible message to say the former verse supports astrology.

Deborah’s song of victory stated that the stars in heaven fought against the enemy general Sisera (Judges 5:20). We believe this is an example of a poetic figure of speech. If Deborah believed it literally, then the Bible records it as her belief but not as God’s truth. Some think this passage actually refers to angelic warfare.

The Star of Bethlehem did not involve the use of magical astrology. The wise men from the East were probably acquainted with astrology, but the Star of Bethlehem stood out as distinct from any system of astrology known to man. If they were observing the heavens for astrological reasons, they immediately recognized that this star was an exceptional one and followed it precisely because it did not fit into any pagan system. God did not use an astrological sign, but used an unusual astronomical event to attract their attention, just as He has used other forces in nature such as earthquakes, wind, and fire. Just as His use of fire at Mount Sinai does not endorse fire worship, so His use of the star does not endorse astrology.

It is dangerous to use astrology in an attempt to further the claims of Christianity or to predict the future. We must base all doctrine and prophecy solely on the written Word of God. Use of the false claims of astrology can only serve to discredit Christianity.

For example, a few years ago some borrowed the astrological belief that we would enter into a new age when all the planets were in alignment. They predicted all sorts of tumultuous events based on the gravitational pull of the aligned planets, but true scientists accurately predicted Flat no such events would occur simply because the combined pull of all the planets is insignificant compared to that of the sun and moon on the earth. Of course, the time for this event has come and gone, and “Christian astrology has failed once again.

In some cases, Christians have actually used astrology o assist them in understanding personalities and in counselling. All such efforts are futile, because both science .111(1 Scripture testify that there is no truth to astrology. Furthermore, by using a satanic tool such as astrology, these people have actually allowed themselves to come under Satan’s influence. We can cite examples of Chris-tians who have been led into the occult and who have transformed themselves into cultists because of their superstitious interest in and involvement with astrology.

Teaching in Church History
The ante-Nicene fathers were strong in their denunciation of astrology and all other forms of magic. The Didache says, “My child, be not an observer of omens, since it leadeth the way to idolatry, neither an enchanter, nor an astrologer.”

Hippolytus devoted Book IV of his work The Refutation of All Heresies to disproving the false claims of astrology. He called it an “art of divination” and an “impotent. . .system.” He said that according to apostolic tradition no magician, enchanter, astrologer, diviner, or soothsayer could maintain his occupation and be a Christian.

Tertullian also wrote against astrology.

Lactantius said that astrology, soothsaying, divination, necromancy, and magic were all inventions of devils.

The Constitutions of the Holy Apostles admonished Christians to avoid all heathen “enchantments, observations of omens, soothsayings, purgations, divinations, observations of birds; their necromancies and invocations.”‘ Furthermore, no Christian could be “a magician, an enchanter, an astrologer, a diviner, an user of magic verses, a juggler, a mountebank, one that makes amulets, a charmer, a soothsayer, a fortune-teller, an observer of palmistry.”

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Bible teaches that we should avoid all witchcraft and divination, including all forms of astrology. We must not attempt to find God’s truth by using a heathen practice. If we want to know God’s truth, let us go to His Word! If we seek insight to help plan our lives or to counsel others, let us ask wisdom of God, who will give liberally to all who ask in faith (James 1:5-6). If we are curious about the future, let us place our faith in God and the Word of God.

The above article “Astrology” is written by David K. Bernard. This article was excerpted from chapter thirteen in Bernard’s book Practical Holiness.

The material is copyrighted and should not be repainted under any other name or author. However, this material may freely be used for personal study or purposes.

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Does God Exist?

DOES GOD EXIST?
BY MARVIN K. BEMBRY

 

“LET ME EXPLAIN the problem science has with Jesus Christ.” The atheist professor of philosophy pauses before his class and then asks one of his new students to stand. “You’re a Christian, aren’t you son?”

“Yes sir.”

“So you believe in God?”

“Absolutely.”

“Is God good?”

“Sure! God’s good.”

“Is God all-powerful? Can God do anything?”

“Yes.”

“Are you good or evil?”

“The Bible says I’m evil.”

The professor grins knowingly. “Ahh! The Bible!” He considers for a moment. “Here’s one for you… Let’s say there’s a sick person and you can cure him. You can do it. Would you help? Would you try?”

“Yes sir, I would.”

“So you’re good…!”

“I wouldn’t say that.”

“Why not say that? You would “Yes.” help a sick or maimed person if you could… in fact, most of us would if we could… yet, God doesn’t.”

[No answer.]

“He doesn’t, does He? My brother was a Christian who died of cancer even though he prayed to Jesus to heal him. How is this Jesus good? Hmmm? Can you answer that one?”

[No answer.]

The elderly man is sympathetic. “No, you can’t, can you?” he takes a sip of water from a glass on his desk to give the student time to relax. In philosophy, you have to go easy with the new ones. “Let’s start again, young fella… Is God good?”

“Er… Yes.”

“Is Satan good?”

“No.”

“Where does Satan come from?”

The student falters. “From… God…”

“That’s right. God made Satan, didn’t He?” The elderly man runs his bony fingers through his thinning hair and turns to the smirking, student audience. “I think we’re going to have a lot of fun this semester, ladies and gentlemen.” He turns back to the Christian… “Tell me son, is there evil in this world?”

“Yes sir.”

“Evil’s everywhere, isn’t it? Did God make everything?”

“Yes.”

“Who created evil?”

[No answer.]

“is there sickness in this world? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All the terrible things – do they exist in this world?”

The student squirms on his feet.

“Who created them?”

[No answer.]

The professor suddenly shouts at his student. “WHO CREATED THEM? TELL ME PLEASE! ” The professor closes in for the kill and climbs into the Christian’s face. In a still small voice: “God created all evil, didn’t He, son?”

[No answer.] The student tries to hold the steady, experienced gaze and fails.

Suddenly the lecturer breaks away to the pace the front of the classroom like an aging panther. The class is mesmerized. “Tell me,” he continues, “How is it that this God is good if He created all evil throughout all time?” The professor swishes his arms around to encompass the wickedness of the world. “All the hatred, the brutality, all the pain, all the torture, all the death and ugliness, and all the suffering created by this good God is all over the world – isn’t it, young man?”

[No answer.]

“Don’t you see it all over the place? Huh?”

Pause.

“Don’t you?” The professor leans into the student’s face again and whispers, “Is God good?”

[No answer.]

“Do you believe in Jesus Christ, son?”

The student’s voice betrays him and cracks, “Yes, professor, I do.”

The old man shakes his head sadly. “Science says you have five senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Have you ever seen your Jesus?”

“No sir. I’ve never seen Him.”

“Then tell us if you’ve ever heard your Jesus.”

“No sir. I have not.”

“Have you ever felt your Jesus, tasted your Jesus, or smelt your Jesus? In fact, do you have any sensory perception of your God whatsoever?”

[No answer.]

“Answer me, please.”

“No sir, I’m afraid I haven’t.”

“You’re AFRAID… YOU haven’t?”

“No sir.”

“Yet you still believe in Him?”

“…yes…”

“That takes FAITH! ” The professor smiles sagely at the underling. “According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says your God doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son? Where is your God now?”

[The student doesn’t answer.]

“Sit down, please.”

The Christian sits… defeated.

Another Christian raises his hand. “Professor, may I address the class?”

The professor turns and smiles. “Ah, another Christian in the vanguard! Come, come, young man. Speak some proper wisdom to the gathering.”

The Christian looks around the room. “You are making some interesting points, sir. Now I’ve got a question for you. Is there such a thing as heat?”

“Yes,” the professor replies. “There’s heat.”

“Is there such a thing as cold?”

“Yes, son, there’s cold, too.”

“No sir, there isn’t.”

The professor’s grin freezes. The room suddenly goes very cold.
The second Christian continues.

“You can have lots of heat, even more heat, super-heat, mega-heat, white heat, a little heat, or no heat, but we don’t have anything called “cold’. We can hit – 458O, 458 degrees below zero, which is no heat, but we can’t go any farther after that. There is no such thing as cold, otherwise we would be able to go colder than – 458ø. You see, sir, cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. We can measure heat in thermal units because heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, just the absence of it.”

Silence. A pin drops somewhere in the classroom.

“Is there such a thing as darkness, professor?”

“That’s a dumb question, son. What is night if it isn’t darkness? What are you getting at…?”

“So you say there is such a thing as darkness?”

“Yes…”

“You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is not something, it is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light, but if you have no light constantly, you have nothing, and it’s called darkness, isn’t it? That’s the meaning we use to define the word. In reality, darkness isn’t. If it were, you would be able to make darkness darker and give me a jar of it. Can you give me a jar of darker darkness, professor?”

Despite himself, the professor smiles at the young effrontery before him. “This will indeed be a good semester. Would you mind telling us what your point is, young man?”

“Yes, professor. My point is, your philosophical premise is flawed to start with and so your conclusion must be in error…”

The professor goes toxic. “Flawed…? How dare you…!”

“Sir, may I explain what I mean?”

The class is all ears.

“Explain… oh, explain…” The professor makes an admirable effort to regain control. Suddenly he is affability itself. He waves his hand to silence the class, for the student to continue.

“You are working on the premise of duality,” the Christian explains. “That, for example, there is life and then there’s death; a good God and a bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, science cannot even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism but has never seen, much less fully understood them. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing. Death is not the opposite of life, merely the absence of it.”

The young man holds up a newspaper he takes from the desk of a neighbor who has been reading it. “Here is one of the most disgusting tabloids this country hosts, professor. Is there such a thing as immorality?”

“Of course there is. Now look…”

“Wrong again, sit. You see, immorality is merely the absence of morality. Is there such a thing as injustice? No. Injustice is the absence of justice. Is there such a thing as evil?” The Christian pauses. “Isn’t evil the absence of good?”

Temporarily speechless with anger, the professor’s face turns an alarming color. The Christian continues. “If there is evil in the world, professor, and we all agree there is; then God, if He exists, must be accomplishing a work through the agency of evil… What work? The Bible tells us it is to see if each one of us will, of our own free will, choose good over evil.”

The professor bridles. “As a philosophical scientist, I don’t view this matter as having anything to do with any choice; as a realist, I absolutely do not recognize the concept of God, or any other theological factor, as being part of the world equation because God is not observable.”

“I would have thought that the absence of God’s moral code in this world is probably one of the most observable phenomena going,” the Christian replies. “Newspapers make billions of dollars reporting it
every week! Tell me, professor, do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?”

“If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, young man, yes, of course I do.”

“Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?”

The professor makes a sucking sound with his teeth and gives his student a silent stony stare.

“Professor, Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution and cannot even prove that this process is an ongoing endeavor, are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you now not a scientist, but a priest?”

“I’ll overlook your impudence in the light of our philosophical discussion. Now, have you quite finished?” the professor hisses.

“So you don’t accept God’s moral code to do what is righteous?”

“I believe in what is – science!”

“Ahh! SCIENCE!” the student’s face splits into a grin. “Sir, you rightly state that science is the study of observed phenomena. Science, too, is a premise which is flawed…”

“Science is flawed?” the professor splutters; the class is in uproar.

The Christian remains standing until the commotion subsides. “To continue the point you were making to the other student, may I give you and example of what I mean?” The professor wisely keeps silent.

The Christian looks around the room. “Is there anyone in the class who has seen the professor’s brain?” The class breaks out in laughter. The Christian points toward his elderly, crumbling tutor. “Is there anyone here who has ever heard the professor’s brain… felt the professor’s brain, touched or smelled the professor’s brain?” No one appears to have done so. The Christian shakes his head sadly. “It appears no one here has had any sensory perception of the professor’s brain whatsoever. Well, according to the rules of empirical, stable, demonstrable protocol; science: I DECLARE that the professor has no brain.”

The class is in chaos.

The Christian sits… because that is what a chair is for.

 

THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY THE APOSTOLIC WRITERS’ DIGEST, JULY 1999, PAGES 8-10. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.

Posted in AIS File Library, TH - Theology & Bible Research0 Comments

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