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Do the Ten Commandments Have a Place in the New Testament Church?
Thanks to Edgar Carlisle
Thanks to Edgar Carlisle
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What can God do with a few Bro Kirkman preaching our Wednesday night service.
Well Said and Well Taken Bro. Levi Pelletier. Sunday Night 7-18-2021.
Bills Lake Baptist Church Sunday Morning Service May 23, 2021 Matthew 9:35-38 The laborers are few Pastor Tuttle Comments can be posted on the channel's discussion page.
Why Fewer Adults Than Children Trust Christ - KJV Preaching Explaining the dangers of years of rebelling against God, this message was preached on Wednesday evening, Apr. 14, 2021, by Pastor Michael D. O'Neal at ...
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Christian athletes testify to the gospel in competition and beyond.“I believe God made me for a purpose. But he also made me fast,” Eric Liddell wrote in a letter to his sister Jenny before competing as a sprinter for Great Britain in the 1924 Summer Olympics.The 1981 film Chariots of Fire (for my money, the best sports movie ever made) follows the lives of the devoutly Christian Liddell and his Jewish teammate Harold Abrahams at the Paris Games, and actor Ian Charleson, playing Liddell, intones these lines over the film’s sublime final race scene.Liddell wins the gold medal in the 400 meters, a race that the 100-meter specialist had never run at an international competition. The son of Scottish missionaries, Liddell refused to compete in the 100 meters, which was won by his friend Abrahams, because the opening heats had been scheduled for a Sunday.Liddell’s decision to remember the Sabbath and forgo the 100-meter competition transformed this national hero into a role model for Christians around the world. This man of remarkable talents was willing to pass up his best shot at athletic glory for the opportunity to properly honor his Lord and Savior.Certainly, many Christians had competed in the previous modern Olympiads, but none took such a public or principled stand for his faith. Following his Olympic triumph, Liddell returned to China, where he had been born during his parents’ mission in the country. He spent much of the rest of his life in China, serving the poor and teaching the gospel.During World War II—the last time the Olympics were called off—Liddell was taken prisoner by Japanese forces and devoted the last two years of his life to ministering to his fellow inmates at the Weixian Internment Camp in Shandong Province. He died just a few ...Continue reading...
As a graduate student in my early twenties, I volunteered on a suicide hotline. The calls I received while working on the hotline certainly included the suicidal person, but they also came from concerned family members, friends, and coworkers. When advising people who wanted to keep someone safe, it was essential to give them tools not only to speak with the person of concern, but to also underscore that the person they seek to help has a choice in the matter. Of course, the goal was to save lives, but we wanted to communicate to the helping party that, ultimately, they are not responsible for another person’s decision should their loved one choose to follow through with their threat of suicide.While suicide is a very serious issue, it doesn’t mean that the helper should be controlled by the threat. For example, after years of counseling with domestic violence survivors, I can recall countless stories of women who were told by an abusive spouse or partner, “if you leave me, I’ll commit suicide.” Again, suicidal thoughts and gestures should be assessed and evaluated, and underlying causes need to be properly addressed. However, tying such requests to expressions of suicide can prove to be, in some cases, controlling. That’s what I communicated to domestic violence survivors who felt demands placed on them to sacrifice their safety, and in some instances, their lives, because of the threats expressed by the person abusing them. Unfortunately, the “threat” of suicide is what is being used against responsible leaders trying to protect children from harmful and often unknown risks associated with gender transition procedures. In the wake of the news that a federal judge in Arkansas blocked that state’s Save Children from Experimentation Act (which would protect children from receiving unnecessary and invasive medical interventions aimed at treating a psychological condition characterized by confusion over one’s biological sex) from going into effect, we’ve seen a resurgence in claims of the risk of suicide, without reference or examination to a range of likely underlying and co-occurring conditions.When appealing to the judge several days ago to temporarily enjoin Arkansas’ law, Chase Strangio of the ACLU claimed: “These families, like hundreds of others across the state, are terrified . . . There has already been a spike in suicide attempts since this legislation was passed.” Court filings read: “For some transgender youth, the prospect of losing this critical medical care, even before the legislation is in effect, is unbearable . . . In the weeks after the bill passed, at least six transgender adolescents in Arkansas attempted suicide.” Within the ACLU’s claims, there is no reference to the other factors that might affect these adolescents’ decisions to attempt suicide. We are simply led to believe that legislative decisions alone are prompting suicidal thoughts in these teenagers.Similar assertions implying that this legislation will only increase the risk of suicide were sprinkled throughout other’s reports on the issue. Some involved in the case went on to argue that these medical practices “save lives” and are necessary for the transgender population that tends to be vulnerable to depression and suicide.The high suicide rate in the transgender identifying population, in fact, has been repeatedly given as the reason to support treatments that stop puberty in developing children, to start kids on a lifetime supply of the opposite-sex’s hormones, and to allow surgeries that remove healthy sexual organs. These claims are misplaced, and frankly, dangerous.That said, suicide is a real threat, and it should be addressed. The underlying causes that are leading to this threat should also be investigated so that this population can be properly treated. But, at this time, there is no evidence that suicidality abates after transgender medical procedures are performed. To the contrary, the available evidence shows a rise in completed suicides following medical interventions. Why? Clearly, the real psychological pain behind the suicidality is not being addressed by medical interventions.The problem here is that suicide should never be used as a tool, by any group, to strong-arm policymakers and the psychological and medical communities into both allowing and providing questionable practices that have somehow gained a monopoly on “standards of care” for gender dysphoria. Especially when those practices involve onboarding children, who have not fully developed physiologically, psychologically, and neurologically, to potentially irreversible and sterilizing treatments. In response, public policy makers should focus on protecting citizens, particularly vulnerable children. Further, policies that inform public health and safety should be firmly grounded in solid empirical research, such as:There is no evidence that transgender medical treatments reduce the psychological distress and mental health issues associated with gender dysphoria.There is no long-term investigation into the psychological and physiological consequences of transgender medicine performed on children.The credible and available evidence indicates:There are significant health risks to transgender medicine. Some of these include cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, & blood clots.In a 30-year longitudinal study, gender reassignment surgery patients had a 19 times higher rate of completed suicide than the general population.A few known underlying conditions that are not addressed by transgender medicine:A recent study showed 45 percent of transgender identifying persons experienced childhood sexual abuse.Higher rates of substance abuse have been found in this population by comparison to the general population.For more information on this topic, see FRC’s issue analysis.Jennifer Bauwens is Director of the Center for Family Studies at Family Research Council.
On “Worldview Wednesday,” we feature an article that addresses a pressing cultural, political, or theological issue. The goal of this blog series is to help Christians think about these issues from a biblical worldview. Read our previous posts on the Center for Biblical Worldview page.If you are married, there’s a good chance you did some premarital counseling that included conversations about what to expect in marriage. These conversations hopefully encompassed much more than who is going to mow the lawn and manage the money. Ideally, these conversations fostered an understanding of what “in good times and bad” actually means. In marriage, as in all relationships, disappointment often results when our expectations don’t match reality.The Christian life isn’t all that different. Many people turn to God because of problems they hope He can fix. Some of us are like the so-called “foxhole Christian” who promises to “live for God” if He will spare our lives and help us survive the battle. Of course, God can meet us in our moments of biggest need, but if we surrender to God because of what He might do for us (instead of what He has already done for us) we run the risk of our expectations not matching reality.If we expect that serving God will make our lives easier, what happens when serving God makes life harder? Could this help explain why some Christians are walking away from their faith? Here is some research I detailed in a recent publication:America is becoming less religious and has been for a while. In just the last decade, the number of people claiming to be Christian has declined 12 percent—from 77 percent to 65 percent. Not only is America less Christian as a percentage, the total number of professing Christians has declined from 176 million in 2009 to 167 million in 2019, even as the population increased by 23 million.Further:The fastest growing religious category in America is the “nones”—those who claim to have no religion at all. Over the last decade, the number of Protestants declined 15 percent and the number of Catholics declined 12 percent, while the “nones” grew 70 percent—from 12 percent of the population to 17 percent in 2019. That’s an additional 30 million people who now claim no religious faith. Of those, 78 percent grew up in the church. The church is losing its own kids.Cultural shifts never have just one cause, but it’s worth considering whether people leave the church because, as with many marriages, their expectations didn’t match reality.When we become Christians, we take sides in a spiritual war that has been raging on this planet since Adam and Eve first sinned. Taking sides in a war—particularly a spiritual one—has consequences. Although this might seem obvious, it is often not highlighted when the gospel is presented.Of course, submitting our lives to Christ does fix our biggest problem: our sin. But many people are unaware of what their biggest problem is, and in many cases, people are more interested in solving their financial, social, or marital problems than their damnation problem. It’s easy to be more interested in the gifts than the Giver, but from God’s perspective, He is the prize: “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you” (Mat. 6:33).The Christian life is filled with joy (Ps. 16:11), but the joy of the Christian life is counterintuitive to the world’s ideas about joy. Even our suffering can be a source of joy: “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience” (James 1:2, NKJV). In fact, we are blessed at the moments when life might seem most challenging, “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake and the gospel” (Mat. 5:11). Being misunderstood and mistreated can not only be a source of joy but evidence that we are doing exactly what Jesus wants us to do: “Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad: for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Mat. 5:12).If we come to Jesus because the Lamb is worthy of His reward, we will never be disappointed. If we come to Jesus because we were hoping He could fix a few things, it could be unsettling if our lives become temporarily more difficult.The reward of the Christian life is not the absence of pain. In fact, becoming a Christian may introduce even more pain and persecution into your life. But one of the rewards of following Jesus is seeing that our pain—even our deepest hurt and suffering—is temporary and that what awaits us on the other side of the pain is more than worth it. This was the apostle Paul’s point when he said, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Rom. 8:18). Moreover, as Christians, we gain the perspective that God is at work in our sufferings and uses them to conform us into the people He wants us to be.Many Christians did not sign up expecting a war. For many, once being a Christian became more of a liability rather than an asset (culturally speaking), they sought a discharge from the service. If we come to Jesus more focused on this life than the next, it’s possible we’ll be disappointed. Based on the numbers, many people are.
United more than ever across denominations, many evangelicals want “homeland and life” over “homeland or death.”A few days after Hurricane Elsa swept across the center of Cuba, Christians of all denominations joined in a nationwide day of prayer and fasting for their country on Wednesday, July 7. The call was made after months of increasing tension on the island amid severe scarcity of food and medicine and as the number of COVID-19 infections began to rise precipitously and the once-lauded health system threatened to collapse. Church leaders of all denominations reported that they were increasingly under surveillance and had been interrogated and threatened.Four days later, on Sunday, July 11 in a town outside Havana, people spilled into the streets and marched peacefully and enthusiastically, calling for freedom and chanting “Patria y Vida” (“Homeland and Life,” the title of a hit song released by pro-democracy Cuban hip hop artists earlier this year and a twist on the Cuban Communist Party slogan “Homeland or Death”). They shouted in unison, “We are not afraid!” The demonstration was recorded and shared live via social media by participants and onlookers and, within hours, similar protests involving thousands of people sprang up in cities and towns across the island.The spontaneity and magnitude of the protests, the likes of which have not been seen in Cuba since the triumph of the revolution in 1959, caught the government off guard. President Miguel Díaz-Canel went on television and made an explicit call to violence, telling the population that he was giving an order to combat and called for true revolutionaries to go into the streets and reclaim them by force. The military, police, and state security agents, both in uniform and plainclothes, flooded into the streets, beating ...Continue reading...
Myal Greene is optimistic about resuming robust refugee resettlement programs under the Biden administration.A veteran World Relief staff member who developed models for church partnerships and expanded the ministry’s programming abroad will take over this year as its new president and CEO.The appointment of Myal Greene follows a challenging season for the organization, the humanitarian arm of the National Association of Evangelicals and a leading refugee resettlement agency.“We’re certainly going through a season of challenges related to the refugee resettlement program and the COVID crisis that have put strains on the organization—on our operations, resources, and opportunities to carry out our programs and our ministry,” Greene said, “but I’m really encouraged by the resilience and commitment of our staff and volunteers, who faithfully serve no matter the circumstances.”World Relief had shut down eight of its 27 national offices due to yearly cuts in refugee admissions and resettlement funding under the Trump administration’s restrictive policies. In the past few months, World Relief began ramping up their resources and rebuilding infrastructure under President Biden. Ministry leaders were also among the advocates holding the Biden administration accountable to his promise to raise the refugee ceiling after the move was delayed by months.Greene is scheduled to take on his new role shortly before the next fiscal year begins in September. His predecessors, Scott Arbeiter and Tim Breene, announced their retirement in February.Beyond resettling refugees domestically, World Relief also runs a number of international initiatives which continue to serve vulnerable populations in underserved countries in the midst of the worldwide COVID-19 crisis. In his previous role as senior vice ...Continue reading...
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