This page has moved to a new address.

Think Christianly

Think Christianly: May 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

Couple: County Trying To Stop Home Bible Studies

Wow, what country do we live in again? Can anyone say Bill of Rights?

Read this story: Couple: County Trying To Stop Home Bible Studies

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Is evolution compatible with faith?

With all the talk of Ida and Missing links, is evolution compatible with faith?

Here are two perspectives: faith and evolution and bio-logos. For resources (books & DVD's) engaging these issues from a Christian perspective, click here.

For an update on Ida, click here (Does the new Ida fossil prove evolution?)

Labels: , , ,

A Prayer of Hope

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope."--Romans 15:13

What a wonderful prayer to offer to our God on behalf of ourselves and others. Amen.

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem by Jay Richards

I am reading a fascinating book right now on economics and christian thought. Richards takes on common myths about capitalism (so far, he is making a compelling case)....more to come.

Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem by Jay Richards

"In Money, Greed, and God, Jay Richards has written the definitive case for capitalism, a crisply written and incisive discourse on wealth and poverty, money and morality for the 21st Century." (George Gilder, co-founder of the Discovery Institute and author of Wealth and Poverty )

"Jay Richards understands the objections to capitalism, and here explains why they do not convince him. The empirical findings revealed in Money, Greed, and God run against those objections." (Michael Novak, Chair in Religion and Public Policy at the American Enterprise Institute )

Product Description

Does capitalism promote greed? Can a person follow Jesus's call to love others and also support capitalism? Was our recent economic crisis caused by flaws inherent to our free market system? Jay Richards presents a new approach to capitalism, revealing how it's fully consistent with Jesus's teachings and the Christian tradition, while also showing why this system is our best bet for renewed economic vigor.

The church is bombarded with two competing messages about money and capitalism:

  • wealth is bad and causes much of the world's suffering
  • wealth is good and God wants you to prosper and be rich

Richards exposes these myths, and other common misconceptions about capitalism, and reveals the surprising ways that capitalism is, in fact, the best system to respond to the biblical mandates of alleviating poverty and protecting the environment. Money, Greed, and God equips readers to take practical steps in their own lives to conduct business, worship God, and serve others without falling into the "prosperity gospel" trap.

(from Amazon)

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Has Christian America Come to an End?

Mark Driscoll, pastor of Mars Hill Church responds to Newsweek.

"Has Christian America come to an end? That question has been hotly debated since Newsweek published their recent feature story reporting that the number of Americans claiming no religious affiliation has nearly doubled since 1990. Additionally, the percentage of self-identified Christians has dropped ten points in the past two decades.

As an evangelical pastor with one of America’s fastest-growing churches in one of its least churched cities, I do not find the report surprising or discouraging. Newsweek missed the subtle — but vital — difference between Christian America and Christendom America." (read on...)

Labels: , , , , ,

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

47-Million-Year-Old Darwinius Masillae Fossil the Missing Link?

You know a story is big when Google changes their search engine logo to resemble this fossil.

The basic headline?

"Scientists yesterday unveiled a 47-million-year-old fossil that they’re calling the "missing link" between primates and humans. Technically called a Darwinius masillae, but nicknamed "Ida," the juvenile female primate was discovered in Germany’s Messel Pit and is one of the most intact fossils ever found. In fact, scientists were even able to identify her last meal: fruit, seeds and leaves." (click for more)

National Geographic here...

But, not everyone is "dazzled"...

"Revolutionary" Fossil Fails to Dazzle Paleontologists

So what does this mean? Has the missing link been found? Well here is an interview with Dr. Fuz Rana with one Christian perspective from Reasons to Believe.

This article from Evolution News.

Also, a blog post here at Uncommon Descent and another Christian perspective from Answers in Genesis.

This will become another icon like "Lucy." On a side note, this has been released with the PR blitz of a major movie (book, website, documentary) all without a lot of examination and peer review. Time will tell. But I wouldn't be surprised to see a retraction on page 26 sometime in the future clarifying the import of this fossil.

For a very helpful introduction to evolution, the fossil record, and intelligent design see the Design of Life.

Helpful thoughts from Stand to Reason

"One question that has to be raised with any fossil evidence is the presupposition and interpretation imposed on the evidence placing it in the fossil chain of evolution. Fossils don't come lined nicely in the strata in transitional order, as the pictures of fossils lined up in science books nicely illustrate. Fossils are dated, which gives us their historical place, but that doesn't prove transition. What is evident in the fossil evidence, and in Ida, is variation in species, which isn't at all remarkable. Claiming those variations are proof of one species evolving into a new one is an interpretation of those physical features already with the assumption of evolution, not objective proof.

A transition is only a transition only if it occupies the space in the historical development that it needs to occupy, and no fossil can provide that proof without the presumption of evolution imposed upon it placing it in the transitional chain. That's circular reasoning."

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Christian Reviews of Dan Brown's 'Angels & Demons'

As I sit here and watch a Discovery channel special on Angels and Demons, I am reminded once again of how often questions of faith and science (and especially the Church's relationship to these) are misunderstood and misconstrued. Dan Brown is at it again...though this one will not raise the issues that the Da Vinci Code did...

Here are two reviews...

Ben Witherington

Apologetics 315

Labels: , , , ,

Welcome to College Featured at Stand to Reason!

Stand to Reason (outstanding minsitry by the way) featured my book Welcome to College on their website and through an email blast. If you haven't purchased graduation gifts yet, there is still time. Help the next generation be equipped to engage our world with the message of Jesus.

Welcome to College

Thank you all for your support and prayers!!

Labels: , , ,

Monday, May 18, 2009

More Americans “Pro-Life” Than “Pro-Choice” for First Time

The majority of Americans are pro-life. The current president is the most pro-abortion president in history...

A new Gallup Poll, conducted May 7-10, finds 51% of Americans calling themselves "pro-life" on the issue of abortion and 42% "pro-choice." This is the first time a majority of U.S. adults have identified themselves as pro-life since Gallup began asking this question in 1995. Also, fewer think abortion should be legal “under any circumstances.”

(read more)

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, May 15, 2009

Former fundamentalist 'debunks' Bible

I Came across this CNN article Former fundamentalist 'debunks' Bible. It appears Bart Ehrman is at it again...just in time for the latest round of religious skepticism served up in Angels and Demons (new movie based on Dan Brown's book).

Ehrman clearly has an axe to grind. And his is self-admittedly the Problem of Evil in the world. This finds its way into his writing. Other equally credentialed New Testament Scholars are not convinced by his arguments; in fact they see the NT as highly reliable historically. Bart Erhman makes a living by overstating the implications of issues biblical scholars (conservative, moderate, or liberal) have known about for decades. See for example our previous post on this issue here when Bart was on the Colbert Report.

Ben Witherington has responded with a six part review of Bart's claims in Jesus Interrupted (Bart Interrupted)
part 1 part 2 part 3 part 4 part 5 part 6

For a wonderful book exploring these claims in accessible fashion, see Reinventing Jesus by Dan Wallace, Ed Komoszewski, and M. James Sawyer.

Labels: , , , , ,

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A Powerful Example of Joy

"For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one."--Hebrews 10:34

a couple of short observations:
  1. these Christians visited their fellow believers in prison...knowing it would lead to trouble for them...
  2. they accepted the consequences of showing compassion to their brothers and sisters in Christ with joy...
  3. They looked on toward a better inheritance...

The Joy of the LORD was their strength. That is encouraging that it is possible and challenging in that I need to do some growing in my ability to experience joy in all circumstances.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Why do we exist?

"To relish and rejoice in the beauty of God alone accounts for why we exist. Enjoying God is the soul's sole satisfaction, with which no rival pleasure can hope to compete. Glorifying God by enjoying him forever. It's the Christian Theory of Everything."-Sam Storms

"These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full."--Jesus (cf. John 15:11)

Trying to explain this to someone who has never experienced the true joy of knowing and loving God is very difficult. It is like trying to describe a fillet Mignon steak to someone who has never eaten one. But that is what we try to do. We invite those who don't know God to taste and see. Much of Christian understanding is preceded by experience (though both are necessary for the knowledge of God).

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, May 11, 2009

200th Post on Think Christianly & What Happened to My News?

Today we have reached a blogging milestone...200 blogs to help us think Christianly. Thank you for your prayers and support.

My other thought for today is more of a question...what happened to my news????

"News organizations once provided citizens with information and thoughtful commentary so they could make informed choices, but today, real-life tragedies and the mundane failures and heartaches of ordinary people are hyped like new movie releases, complete with special effects..."--Dick Staub

What this means is that stories are selected and arranged to sell commercial dollars and drive ratings...not just inform the public. Now some informing does occur, but it doesn't matter your news of choice--CNN, FOX, NBC, or ABC--the goal isn't pure, unbiased reporting. There is always an agenda. So we even need to add a cup of discernment to our nightly news.

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Welcome to College on Stand to Reason Blog

Democrats introduce bill to legalize infanticide up to one year

(HT - Wintery Knight) this is a very helpful post on the Abortion issue....all from Wintery Knight - (clip) Kathy Ireland artfully defends Pro -Life Position

**Correction** UPDATE: Sorry, the headline from before should read that infanticide up to one year will be reduced to a felony, not legalized outright! My mistake! (from Wintery Knight)

Democrats introduce bill to legalize infanticide up to one year

A post at Gateway Pundit, sent to me by the greatest commenter in the blogosphere, ECM.
Gateway Pundit has a link to the bill, but Cassy Fiano has a lot more.
Here’s a bit about the bill:

It defines infanticide as:

A person commits an offense if the person wilfully by an act or omission causes the death of a child to whom the person gave birth within the 12-month period preceding the child’s deathThe bill says that infanticide should not be prosecuted as murder, though, as long as:
… at the time of the act or omission, the person’s judgment was impaired as a result of the effects of giving birth or the effects of lactation following the birth.Infanticide would become a felony, punishable by no more than two years in prison, with a minimum of 180 days, and/or a fine of no more than $10,000.

We need to start getting serious about defending the pro-life view using facts and arguments. Here’s some stuff to get you started. Disagreeing with people is fun once you take time to learn your stuff in detail.

Audio: Scott Klusendorf’s 35-minute case for the pro-life position
Audio: A 55-minute discussion featuring two great pro-life debaters, Greg Koukl and Scott Klusendorf
My own religion-free case for the pro-life position in plain English
A comparison of embryonic and adult stem cell research
Video: Cute 12-year old girl makes the pro-life case in a short speech

Labels: , , , ,

Trusting Christ - Is It Easy To do?

“Trusting Christ does not take the form of merely believing things about him. Moreover, knowing the “right answers” does not mean we truly believe them. To believe them means we are set to act as if these “right answers” are true. Perhaps the hardest thing for sincere Christians to come to grips with is the level of real unbelief in their own lives: the unformulated skepticism about Jesus that permeates all dimensions of their being and undermines the efforts they do make toward Christlikeness.”—Dallas Willard & Jan Johnson

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

How does God feel about you?

"The LORD your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy."--Zephaniah 3:17

"The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, "I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness."--Jeremiah 31:3

God loves you and you can always turn to Him.

Labels: , , ,

Monday, May 4, 2009

Simplified Missional Living

I came across a helpful article on how to live in a missional way with those around you as a Christian... (click here)

here is one of the tips...

Be a Regular
"Instead of hopping all over the city for gas, groceries, haircuts, eating out, and coffee, go to the same places at the same times. Get to know the staff. Smile. Ask questions. Be a regular. I have friends at coffee shops all over the city. My friends at Starbucks donate a ton of leftover pastries to our church 2-3 times a week. We use them for church gatherings and occasionally give them to the homeless. Build relationships. Be a regular."

(HT - Between Two Worlds)

Labels: , ,

Friday, May 1, 2009

Is it possible to become more like Jesus?

How do we become more like Jesus in the day to day? Dallas Willard has some helpful advice.

Labels: , ,