Posts Tagged ‘Christianity’

This is a really interesting interview with Alice Cooper about his close friendship with the late Glen Campbell. Cooper, several times, mentions that one of their connections had to do with both of them being Christians. There are other interesting parallels as well.  -E

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Twilight Zone Obsolete with words

In case there is any doubt being “tolerant” can actually mean being highly in – tolerant, take a look at someone getting berned by Mr. Sanders merely for espousing the exact same beliefs Christianity has held since its inception.  Be reminded, also, the accused was merely defending the statement of beliefs of his Alma Mater – Wheaton College – which is similar to most orthodox, evangelical Christian churches worldwide. The article he wrote defending Wheaton may be found at this link. You can watch the video of B. Sanders’ interrogation on Youtube right here. If there is any doubt about the historic, exclusivity of Christianity, read Jesus’ own words in John 3:16-18 and 14:6, which include a reference readily made known via the end zones of American football games. Besides being Biblically illiterate, I suppose Sanders isn’t much of a sports fan either.

John-3-16- end zone  John 3 16 baseball

I guess in Bernie’s world, people who hold to basic Christian beliefs are unqualified to hold public office in this country. This scenario is eerily reminiscent of the dystopian Twilight Zone episode where a man is declared “obsolete” by the totalitarian state – partly for still owning and reading a Bible.

Twilight Zone Obsolete

It’s a bummer someone like John Hancock (1737 – 1793), president of congress and one of the most famous signers of the Declaration of Independence – would likely not get a passing grade in Bernie’s inquisition (see below excerpt from Wallbuilders.com).  By the way, if you’d like for the Bern to apologize, you can put your own John Hancock right here. -E

John Hancock - signing image

John Hancock

SIGNER OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE; PRESIDENT OF CONGRESS;
REVOLUTIONARY GENERAL; GOVERNOR OF MASSACHUSETTSSensible of the importance of Christian piety and virtue to the order and happiness of a state, I cannot but earnestly commend to you every measure for their support and encouragement.37

He called on the entire state to pray “that universal happiness may be established in the world [and] that all may bow to the scepter of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the whole earth be filled with His glory.”38

He also called on the State of Massachusetts to pray . . .

  • that all nations may bow to the scepter of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and that the whole earth may be filled with his glory.39
  • that the spiritual kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ may be continually increasing until the whole earth shall be filled with His glory.40
  • to confess their sins and to implore forgiveness of God through the merits of the Savior of the World.41
  • to cause the benign religion of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to be known, understood, and practiced among all the inhabitants of the earth.42
  • to confess their sins before God and implore His forgiveness through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.43
  • that He would finally overrule all events to the advancement of the Redeemer’s kingdom and the establishment of universal peace and good will among men.44
  • that the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ may be established in peace and righteousness among all the nations of the earth.45
  • that with true contrition of heart we may confess our sins, resolve to forsake them, and implore the Divine forgiveness, through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, our Savior. . . . And finally to overrule all the commotions in the world to the spreading the true religion of our Lord Jesus Christ in its purity and power among all the people of the earth.4637. Independent Chronicle (Boston), November 2, 1780, last page; see also Abram English Brown, John Hancock, His Book (Boston: Lee and Shepard, 1898), p. 269.38. John Hancock, A Proclamation For a Day of Public Thanksgiving 1791, given as Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, from an original broadside in our possession.39. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Public Thanksgiving, October 28, 1784, from a proclamation in our possession, Evans #18593.40. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Public Thanksgiving, October 29, 1788, from a proclamation in our possession, Evans #21237.41. John Hancock, Proclamation For a Day of Fasting and Prayer, March 16, 1789, from a proclamation in our possession, Evans #21946.

    42. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Thanksgiving and Praise, September 16, 1790, from an original broadside in our possession.

    43. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Fasting and Prayer, February 11, 1791, from a proclamation in our possession, Evans #23549.

    44. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Fasting, Prayer and Humiliation, February 24, 1792, from a proclamation in our possession, Evans #24519.

    45. John Hancock, Proclamation for a Day of Public Thanksgiving, October 25, 1792, from an original broadside in our possession.

    46. John Hancock, Proclamation for Day of Public Fasting, Humiliation and Prayer, March 4, 1793, from a broadside in our possession.

For this reviewer, there was plenty rotten in Pen-mark with Wm. Paul Young’s 2007 book The ShackNot in the least of this was when God (the Trinity) says to the human character (Mack) that the persons of the Trinity are submitted to humans the same way they are submitted to each other (see p. 145):

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Another fallacious zinger is found where, concerning the person Jesus Christ, it is explained by God that Jesus’ miracles, healings, and even raising people from the dead didn’t prove Jesus was Godmore than human, (but rather) it proves that Jesus is truly human (see p. 99):

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Still, the story must have contained enough slight of hand logic and emotional appeal distraction to keep the wool sufficiently pulled over the eyes of the unsuspecting. However, with the recent (March 7, 2017) release of Wm. Paul Young’s latest book Lies We Believe About God, there should remain no doubt about the erroneous beliefs of The Shack author. Here is a photo of my copy (which was already sold out at the local Barnes and Noble, so I had to special order it. The clerk specifically told me “these are selling like crazy”). 

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The book consists of what the author describes as 28 “lies” which many Christians have been duped into believing about God. I’m hoping to have a series of several posts on these – partly so you won’t feel the need to buy the book yourself. For now, here’s “Lie #13” – “You need to get saved.” 

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Young clearly states this is one of the 28 “lies” we Christians have been led to believe is true, but is not. He then goes on to succinctly explain (p. 117): “So what is the Good News? What is the Gospel? The Good news is not that Jesus has opened up the possibility of salvation and you have been invited to receive Jesus into your life. The Gospel is that Jesus has already included you into his life, into His relationship…”

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If there is still any hint of wiggle room left in what’s being said, he entertains the rhetorical questions (on p. 118): “Are you suggesting that everyone is saved? That you believe in universal salvation? ” To which he replies “That is exactly what I am saying!” 

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I suppose based on Young’s premise, when the jail-keeper in Acts 16 asked Paul and Silas “Sirs, what must I do to be saved” they should have responded “the need to be saved is a lie, you’re already saved.” Strangely, that wasn’t their response. They said:Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved…” (Acts 16:30b – 31)

One of the proof-texts Young uses to support his universalism is John 3:17 which he places in conjunction with John 3:16 “For God so loved the world…” (3:17) “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemns the world, but to save the world through Him” (with the emphasis on world by Young, himself). In his mind, usages of “world” such as this imply automatic, universal salvation for everyone. It’s curious Young didn’t go on to the very next verse in John 3 which says “He who believes in Him is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God (John 3:18 NKJV).

Rest assured the Bible doesn’t teach universal salvation for all – and rest assured the author of the Shack, does.

(More to come on this subject – and special thanks to our church youth pastor Jeremy Doyle for tipping me off about the release of this recent book)

-E

 

 

 

 

Once again, on Dec. 22, 2016 a sea of families (literally thousands) received Christmas gifts via the California Highway Patrol – which is an event hosted on the campus of Valley Baptist Church, Bakersfield.

This is a bit of challenge to a position that virtually all of society’s ills are caused,  jointly, by these two entities (law enforcement and the *gasp* organized church). Might want to rethink this : )

-E

 

After much prayer, thought, and effort, I’m extremely excited for this to finally come into fruition. If you live within driving distance of the Kern County, Ca. area, be encouraged to join us as we host this conglomeration of world-class scholars in Christian apologetics (speaking IN PERSON). The early bird cost (through April 1st) is only $30 (married couples are $50, students are $25) and you can register  online by going right here. If you are from another church, know that there will be materials available for purchase by each speaker for your personal or small group studies. If you are a “skeptic” (atheist/agnostic etc) you are not only welcome, but feel free to contact us here at VBC for a possible scholarship to pay for your attendance (ask for Eric Hann – 661 – 387 – 6389). There haven’t been many of these types of events in the central California area, so be certain to take opportunity to join us. The following is the list of our distinguished guests: lee_strobe

Lee Strobel, M.S.L. M.S.L., Yale Law School Mr. Strobel is the author of The Case for a Creator, God’s Outrageous Claims, The Case for Christmas, The Case for Easter, and Surviving a Spiritual Mismatch in Marriage, which he wrote with his wife, Leslie. For two seasons, Lee was executive producer and host of the weekly national network television program Faith Under Fire. He is also a contributing editor and columnist for Outreach magazine.

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J.P. Moreland, Ph.D. Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, Biola University Ph.D., University of Southern California; Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary; M.A., University of California, Riverside He has authored or co-authored books including Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview, Christianity and the Nature of Science, Scaling the Secular City, Does God Exist?, Immortality: The Other Side of Death, and The Life and Death Debate: Moral Issues of Our Times. He is co-editor of Christian Perspectives on Being Human and Jesus Under Fire: Modern Scholarship Reinvents the Historical Jesus. His work appears in scholarly journals throughout the world. Find him on the web at http://www.jpmoreland.com

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Sean McDowell, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Apologetics, Biola University Ph.D. in Apologetics and Worldview Studies, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; M.A. in Philosophy, Talbot School of Theology; M.A. in Theology, Talbot School of Theology Sean McDowell has authored, edited and contributed to 15 books and written dozens of articles in the fields of apologetics, philosophy, culture and ethics. He is an award-winning teacher and the son of Biola alumnus and well-known Christian apologist, Josh McDowell (’66, M.Div. ’71). Sean McDowell has co-authored several books, including The Bible Handbook of Difficult Verses and the recently updated version of More Than a Carpenter. McDowell graduated from Biola’s Talbot school of Theology in 2003 with a double Master’s degree in Philosophy and Theology. His Ph.D. is in Apologetics and Worldview Studies.

Clay Jones, D.Min. Associate Professor of Christian Apologetics, Biola University Doctor of Ministry, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; M.Div.; B.A., philosophy Formerly hosted Contend for Truth, a call-in nationally syndicated talk radio program. On his program he debated many people over eight years including John Cobb, Jr.; a professor of Buddhism; Jamal Badawi, Islamic Information Institute; a Muslim cleric; Lee Holzinger, Church of Scientology; Mormons; Jehovah’s Witness Greg Stafford; Dallas Blanchard, RCRC; Peta representatives; a euthanasia advocate; a secular humanist, Rep. Loretta Sanchez; KFI talk show host Bill Handle; Jimmy Creech, SoulForce; Bruce Ware; Robert Morey; and R. Scott Clark . Dr. Jones was the executive director of Simon Greenleaf University (now Trinity Law School) has been on the pastoral staff of two large churches; has authored apologetic software as well as encyclopedia and journal articles; is writing a book, Why God Allows Evil, and speaks widely on that subject. Find him on the web at www.clayjones.net

Craig J. Hazen, Ph.D. Founder and Director of M.A. Program in Christian Apologetics Director of the M.A. Program in Science and Religion Professor of Comparative Religion and Apologetics Ph.D., M.A., University of California, Santa Barbara Dr. Hazen is the editor of the philosophy journal, Philosophia Christi. He is also the author of the monograph The Village Enlightenment in America, the acclaimed apologetics novel Five Sacred Crossings, and dozens of articles and chapters in various books and journals. He is a recipient of the Fischer Award, the highest faculty honor at Biola and has lectured across North America and Europe on key apologetics topics—including lectures on Capitol Hill and in the White House. He is a popular church and conference speaker and former co-host of a national radio talk program. The following is the scheduled itinerary: Friday, April 24, 2015 -6:30-6:45pm – Event begins: Announcements and Introductions -6:45-7:00 – Craig Hazen: Mini-lecture on the Biblical Case for Apologetics -7:00-7:15 – J.P. Moreland: Mini-lecture on Addressing a Culture in Decay -7:15-7:30 – Sean McDowell: Mini-Lecture on Apologetic Impact 7:30 – 7:45 – Lee Strobel: Mini-Lecture on The Unexpected Adventure 7:45 – 8:00 – Break 8:00 – 9:00 – Clay Jones: Why God Allows Evil Saturday, April 25, 2015 (a light continental breakfast will be served) -9:00 – 9:05am – Announcements and  Introductions 9:05 – 9:55 – Lee Strobel: The Case for Christ – The Resurrection 9:55 – 10:10 – Break 10:10 – 11:00 – J.P. Moreland: The Case for the Soul 11:00 – 11:15 – Break 11:15 – 12:00Pm – Sean McDowell: The Reliability of Scripture 12:00 -12:10 – Break 12:10 – 1:00 – Craig Hazen: Christianity and the Challenge of World Religions 1:00 – Final comments and dismissal

See you there   -Eric

CT  CTFL books-0709-lee-strobel MJW

Becoming a Christian

Posted: August 27, 2010 by pastorerichann in Christian Starters
Tags: , ,

The truth about how to become a Christian is both profound and simple.

The central theme of Christianity is the “cross event” of Jesus Christ. Because of the cross and resurrection of Christ, people for centuries have discovered new life, hope, peace, and even eternal life. The cross event also clearly evidences the truth that God loves you (John 3:16, Romans 5:8).  In the words of a song that was popular a few years ago, we were meant to live for so much moremore than this world has to offer. Let’s use the letters in the word “CROSS” to understand its important meaning:

The C in CROSS is for Christ.

Christ, the Son of God, died on the cross. The Bible says, “But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8)!
Four truths to remember about Christ: The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ is God, He was without sin, that He died on the cross, and that He rose again from the dead as a proof of His identity.

Why did Jesus die on the cross?  That question is answered by the next letter:

The R in CROSS is for Reason.

The reason Christ died is for sin.
The Bible says, “For Christ also suffered for sins once for all, the righteous [that was Jesus] for the unrighteous [that was us], that He might bring you to God” (1 Peter 3:18).

The Bible, our conscience, and the Law of God (Ten Commandments) reveal that we have fallen short of God’s standard of perfection. From the beginning until today, all people are guilty before God because of their sin.

What is the outcome? That question is answered by the next letter:

The O in CROSS is for Outcome.

The outcome of sin is death.
The Bible says, “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).

Wages are what we earn. The earnings of sin spoil everything we do. The outcome or wages of our sin results in death. Physical death separates us from life here and spiritual death separates us from God in the hereafter. This is bad news, but the next letter contains good news.

What is the good news? That question is answered by the next letter:

The S in CROSS is for Substitute.

Jesus was our substitute on the cross.
The Bible says, “He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Jesus took our sin upon Himself and suffered what we deserved. Jesus’ sacrifice displays God’s loving mercy and righteous justice as no other action could. He offers forgiveness of our sin as a free gift.

This gift, however, must be received. That brings us to the last letter:

The last S in CROSS is Salvation.

Because Jesus is our substitute, He is the only one who can offer salvation. Salvation includes forgiveness of sin and the gift of eternal life.

But how is this possible?
To have forgiveness and eternal life you must repent, believe, and receive. It’s like three branches joined together, making one living plant.

To repent, the Bible says, “Repent and turn back, that your sins may be wiped out” (Acts 3:19). Repentance is turning away from sin to God. It’s changing your view of sin, yourself, and God.

To believe and receive, the Bible says, “To all who did receive Him, He gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in His name” (John 1:12). Believing and receiving means trusting Christ alone for salvation.

Would you consider right now trusting Christ alone for eternal life?

If so, then pray this prayer or a similar prayer from your heart to express that trust. These are not intended to be just “words” – but instead should be a genuine expression of your trust in Christ.

Prayer:
Dear Jesus Christ, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died on the cross for my sin and then arose. In repentance, I ask you to forgive me of my sin. I now confess You as my Lord and Savior and trust You alone for my salvation. Thank You for the free gift of eternal life. Amen.

Congratulations!
You have just made the most important decision of your life.

We would love to hear about your decision. Go here to share about your decision with us:

ehann@valleybaptist.org

From here it’s important to deepen your relationship with Christ. Here are some initial practices to help you:

  1. Read your Bible everyday to know Christ better.
  2. Talk to God in prayer every day.
  3. Tell others about Christ.
  4. Worship, fellowship, and serve with other Christians in a church where Christ is preached (if you live in the Central Southern Iowa area, we’d love to see you here at Cornerstone).
  5. As Christ’s representative in a needy world, demonstrate your new life by your love and concern for others.

How to get started reading your Bible