Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Spicy Shrimp

The hot plate of shrimp looked delicious. The smell curled into the air. It would taste wonderful, Jenny* thought.

One problem: Michelle had ordered the plate of shrimp, not Jenny.

As we all waited for the rest of the food to come, we played a card game. As a part of this game, everyone but the narrator has to close their eyes.

I was the narrator. Everyone else had their eyes closed. I looked over at Jenny; her eyes were wide, her mouth open, and she was fanning herself. Then, she grabbed her drink and started drinking quickly.

I started laughing. I knew what had happened; she had taken some shrimp. Michelle had order spice shrimp, and it burned Jenny’s mouth.

This story made me thing about what happens when we sin; often, the sin we did will turn us in, and we’ll be caught. Jenny would have saved herself the embarrassment if she’d kept her hands to herself. I wonder how much guilt and shame we could avoid if we simply avoided sin. After all, if there’s no crime, we can’t get caught.

*Name has been changed.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Too Old?

Some say the Bible isn’t relative anymore since it’s too old. If you follow that same logic, gravity doesn’t apply anymore since it’s too old. Just because something is old doesn’t mean it’s useless.

The Bible is relative to today. It may not talk about iPhones, or TVs, or cars, but it does address things that haven’t changed, like how mankind should live, or what the nature of God is, and these principles apply whether we are in the first century, or the 21st century.

While at TeenPact, I asked a question: how can you find out if something is absolute truth? The answer: if something is relevant to all people at all times, then it is absolute truth.

The fact that the Bible is old gives more reason to believe it; it has stood the test of time.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Too Many Authors?

Some people think that having too many will cause errors. Normally, there would be.

Imagine writing an essay on a controversy topic, or a topic one can’t fully understand, like black holes. No one is 100% sure what a black hole is.

Now, have 40 different authors write an essay about this topic. These men are scattered throughout history, about a 4,000 year window. Some lived in Egypt, some in Rome, some in Israel, some Babylon. They all are from different backgrounds, education and occupation: an Egypt prince, fisher men, a former slave, religious leaders, kings, prophets, etc. Now, take all these essays and put them into one book. What do you have? A mess!

This was how the Bible was written: 40 different authors all from different time frames, backgrounds, and places writing about the most controversial and mysterious topic ever known to mankind: God. God’s hand was on these men as they wrote.

Since God is flawless, so is His word.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Too Many Errors?

Every worldview is based on a standard. The standard of Christianity is the Bible. Is it reliable? Can you trust it? Why? We looked at some reasons why people don’t believe the Bible.

A lot of people think the Bible is unreliable since it has too many errors. So many different people wrote it. It was written by men, right? Men are flawed.

If someone comes to you and says the Bible has too many errors, ask them to show you one. It’s amazing! They can’t. You know why? There aren’t any!

There have been atheist who have read the whole Bible trying to find errors; they couldn’t. In fact, they often come to Christ because the Bible is so powerful.

"As for God, his way is perfect;
the word of the LORD is flawless.
He is a shield
for all who take refuge in him."
-2 Samuel 22:31

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Does my worldview matter?

Does it really matter what my worldview is? After all, it’s not going to change anything. What I think doesn’t matter.

Our worldview dictates what our actions are. If your worldview says there is no after life, you’ll pour all your money and energy into your world/culture, because you believe this life is all there is.

What you think dictates what you do. Ideas turn into actions. Our worldview controls how we interact with the world.

Think about Hitler. We all know about the holocaust and all the people he killed. His acts caused the death of about six million Jews. Why did he do this? His worldview. He believed in evolution and thought it was necessary to kill the ‘inferior’ people to advance mankind into the next stage of evolution.

Our worldview is important because it dictates our actions.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

What is your worldview?

First, what is a worldview? Well, it’s the way you view the world. That was original. :-)

I’ve heard worldview described as the glasses you look at life through. If your glasses have a red tint, then you’ll view everything with a red tint. If your glasses are out of focus, your world will be blurry.

That being said, what’s your worldview? What are your glasses? Every world view answers these questions:

The nature of God

  • Is there a god?
  • What is he like?
The nature of man
  • What is the origin of man?
  • What is the purpose of man?
  • Where does man go after he dies?
  • What is the basis of ethics and morality?

How you answer these questions will show you what your world view is.

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Early church in a Roman world: Fire

The wind beats against the walls. Rain pours down the roof. During the storm, your fire goes out.

Unlike the 21st centaury, you don’t have matches or a lighter. You live in the 1st centaury in a Roman town. How are you going to re-light your fire?

In a Roman city their religion is the center of their culture. The Romans lived in constant fear of offending the gods and bringing down their wrath. Sacrifices and offerings were given daily to appease the gods.

In the mountain above the town, in a cave, there constantly burned a fire. The Romans believed that that fire was from the gods. If you needed fire, you would hike up to the cave with a torch, light it, and then go back to your home. The presents of the gods were with that fire. How wonderful it was to have the presents of the gods in your home!

But you’re a Christian. Are you going to climb up to that cave and accept the gods’ fire? Will you bring that fire into your home?

This is one of the daily challenges the early church faced as they tried to share the gospel of Christ.

Source: That the world may know: in the dust of the Rabbi

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Early Church in a Roman World: The Market Place

Imagine living in a Roman city where their religion is the center of their culture. The Romans lived in constant fear of offending the gods and bringing down their wrath. Sacrifices and offerings were given daily to appease the gods.

You are a Christian, and you believe Jesus is the only God. Imagine the culture clash. When we think of the challenges the early church faced, we think of them being thrown to the lions. Though this is true, they faced many other challenges on a daily level.

You come to the market to sell your grain, but before you can sell your goods, you must put incense on the altar of Zeus and pledge your allegiance to him. As a Christian, you can’t do that; only Christ is God. The officials will not allow you to sell your grain for fear of offending the gods.

Suddenly, your source of income is gone.

This is one of the daily challenges the early church faced as they tried to share the gospel of Christ.

Source: That the world may know: in the dust of the Rabbi

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


An orphan girl living with her cousin. She works hard with her cousin to provide enough food for them to eat. Kidnapped from her home. Treated by the servants to make her physical body beautiful, to make her fit for her one night with the man who kidnapped her. She doesn’t want to give her body to any man but her husband, but if she refuses to sleep with him, she’ll be killed. She has no freedom, no way home, no way of escape.

At this point, one might say this young girl has been forgotten. The fateful tides of this world have swept this unfortunate girl into a horrible situation, a situation she has no control over. If you were in her shoes, you may think how could God allow this to happen?

God is faithful. He works all things together for those who love Him. He can take the fateful tides of this world and bend them to accomplish His will.

Some may say this girl’s story is over, but God used this girl to save His people from slaughter.

This is the story of Esher.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

"religious" man

A story I heard from Bill Jack at TeenPact.

An atheist radio broadcaster was interviewing a Christian on his show. The Atheist kept drilling the Christian with questions about the existence of God. The Christian defended his beliefs and all the proof that there was a god.

After about 15 minutes of this, the Christian said to the Atheist,
“So tell me, why don’t you believe in God? What proof do you have?”

Then something you don’t want on the radio happened; dead air.

After a long silence, the atheist gave a nervous giggle and said,
“I don’t know. I just believe.”

“You just believe?” the Christian said. “I’ve been giving you all the reasons for my beliefs, and you just believe? You are the most religious man I know.”

Monday, March 8, 2010

To Miss the Mark

We often define sin as doing something wrong. Though this statement is true, the full definition of sin covers much more.

The definition of the word sin is to miss the mark. The mark of what?

I enjoy target shooting with my rifle. The goal, of course, is to hit the target. To hit the target, I must be very focused, line the target up, hold still, pull the trigger gently, etc. Now, it miss the target is a whole lot easier. I could barely miss the target, or I could be shooting the other direction! Either way, it’s a miss.

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23) notice this verse didn’t say “we’ve been wrong” but “fallen short”

So if sin means to miss the mark, what mark are we shooting at? What’s the target? God’s standard and His will.

Whenever we disobey or do something outside God’s will, we sin. Sin is not only doing something wrong; it’s not doing what God commands.

“Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins”—James 4:17

Sin is going against God’s commands, whether it be lying or not loving our neighbor. Think about it. Every time we choose not to be kind, or loving, or be Generous, we are sinning. It’s easy to think “I’m not doing anything wrong!” but are you doing what’s right?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Being loved

"How bold one gets when one is sure of being loved."