Archive for the 'Recommended Article' Category

07
Aug
17

Why Must the Laborers Be Few? by Jordan Scott

Why Must the Laborers Be Few? by Jordan Scott

My family cannot say that we were called by God to the Kurdish people. Four years ago, I didn’t even know who they were. However, my wife and I both bought into Jesus’ name being made famous where it was not. Then, some of my closest Christian friends decided to move to Kurdistan, and their decision that really helped direct my steps. That’s how my wife and two daughters ended up here. No audible voice from God, no highlight on a map, no specific burden for the Kurdish people—just a young, passionate family who loves the Lord and wants others to love Him too.

I recently drove into East Mosul with a team for a food and water distribution. As we were passing out packages of food, we would see families sitting next to the goods while another family member would go find a wheelbarrow to transport it. I see this one kid, about seven years old, sitting next to four cases of water. And a few feet away I see another kid, same age, sitting on the ground with nothing next to him.

If you were on the distribution with us that day, who would you give your water to?

America is sitting next to four centuries of “water”—four hundred years of access to the Gospel. The Kurds aren’t. I’ll let you make the choice.

Read complete article here:
http://www.faimission.org/articles/2017/8/5/why-must-the-laborers-be-few

 

_____________________________

I came across the above article at a very opportune time. The fact that it was written only a day or two ago makes it seem even more significant.

Recently many of my posts have been addressing Christian attitudes to Muslims, something that has concerned me since seeing some of the hateful things written about Muslims, even by those considered to Christian teachers. (What kind of Christian witness do those attitudes display?)

After publishing those posts I’ve received some (well-meaning) advice: that I’ve been venturing into risky territory; that ministry to Muslims requires a special calling.

Firstly, I’ve never considered myself to have (or need) a special calling to minister to any particular group of people, Muslim or otherwise, and I’ve never considered myself limited to addressing one particular group above another, (most of what I’ve posted hasn’t been directed at Muslims anyway – but to Christians who’ve taken a very un-Christlike approach to Muslims).

I try to deal with opportunities and confront issues as they  arise. I don’t believe I need to wait for a special calling to do so, and I don’t believe that the average Christian needs any special calling to permit them to act on whatever opportunities they find right in front of them.

Too many of us can be like the servant who chose to bury the money (“talent”) he was given by his Master, too afraid of doing the wrong thing and losing it, to put it to use and potentially make a profit for his Master.
Matt 25:14-30

We wait around for that assumed special, individual calling and in doing so miss the general universal calling of all believers. We rationalise our avoidance of certain possible actions with the excuse: “it’s not my calling”.

I know I wasted most of my Christian life avoiding so many opportunities that will never open up again. I look back and see so many possibilities that I didn’t act on – not because I wasn’t “called” to take them, but because they may have been inconvenient or caused discomfort: basically through fear of losing something I didn’t really want to give up.

I replied to that well-meaning advice I mentioned earlier by referring to the book of Acts and some of the experiences of Paul. Those experiences are also cited in the above article.

 If the Lord doesn’t want you to go, He’ll stop you the way He stopped Paul in Asia.

(Acts 16:6-7 )

 

Am I denying that there ARE some special callings for particular people?

No – it’s clear that Paul was called to be the apostle to the gentiles, and God appoints some people to particular roles and tasks within His church and in the world; but we should not allow that fact to hold us back from general obedience to what he has commissioned His followers to do, when the need is clear and while we have the opportunity to do it. And if we are faithful doing that, we’ll find more opportunities opening up.

 

28
Jul
17

Some Short Observations on Modern “Culture”

Another very insightful article from Jeff Weddle’s blog.

I always appreciate Jeff’s writings.

anti-itch meditation

–We now live in a time when parents are shooting their kids full of hormones so they can “change genders,” while simultaneously protesting the injection of hormones into cows and chickens served for dinner.

–If it is true that anti-abortion Conservatives “care about babies before they’re born and not after,” then isn’t it also true, by that same logic, that abortion-supporting Liberals kill babies before so they don’t have to care after?

–Parents have taken it upon themselves to be their kids’ friends, not authority figures, not people who make rules and enforce them. It’s all but impossible for a kid to rebel today since society so readily approves of all their trying-to-be-rebellious sin. Since there are no longer any human standards to rebel against, kids are now rebelling against biology.

–The two main arguments atheists use against God are:
1) How can a good God allow so much evil?…

View original post 263 more words

03
Jul
17

Understanding Jihad

Part One: The Heart of a Jihadist

Youssef had just graduated from university and was returning to his home country in the Middle East. He had arrived in Europe eager to promote Islam and gain a western education. It was at university he first encountered sincere disciples of Jesus who were willing to share their beliefs and friendship with him. As his relationships with them grew, so did his curiosity about the Messiah. Youssef eventually gave his life to Christ and exchanged his radical views of fundamental Islam for the meekness of a risen Savior.

Now it was time for Youssef to move on. He was leaving Europe with a new education, but more importantly, a new purpose in life. Determined to share Christ with his family and friends, he had decided to return home. This concerned his Christian brothers and sisters greatly. Youssef’s father was a high-ranking political figure in his home country. As a child, Youssef had been invited to observe quietly as his father held important meetings in their home with men like Osama bin Laden.

Youssef’s Christian friends implored him not to go back and suggested other ways he might effectively share the Gospel. The risk was high, and they worried for his life.

Youssef looked at them squarely in the eye and said, “As a young boy, my mother sat me on her knee and stroked my hair as she whispered, ‘My son, one day you will strap a bomb to yourself and become a glorious hero for Allah.’ Since I was a child, I have been prepared to die for God. But now, I know the God I am dying for. His name is Jesus, and He died for me.

full article here:
https://www.crescentproject.org/articles-blog/2017/5/4/understanding-jihad-part-one-the-heart-of-a-jihadist

Part two is here:

https://www.crescentproject.org/articles-blog/2017/5/5/understanding-jihad-part-two-the-creed-behind-the-cruelty

See also:

It is important to protect communities we live in. The only way we can do that is to meet Muslims in our communities and share the Gospel with them. The Gospel will change their lives…

…Christians must resolve to move beyond the anger and fear incited by the media and obey the command of Jesus who said, “…go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age,” (Matthew 28:19-20).

Abundant life does not mean you live in the United States of America or own a fancy car. It means you have been saved, forgiven, and the Holy Spirit is guiding you throughout your life.

As Christians, we can invite the Muslims in our communities to enter this abundant life through Jesus the Messiah.

https://www.crescentproject.org/articles-blog/2017/5/5/will-jihad-ever-end-an-interview-with-the-president-of-crescent-project

22
Jun
17

Why The Church Must Love The Refugee” by Scott Gustafson

Here are a few excerpts from “Why The Church Must Love The Refugee” by Scott Gustafson.

Please go to the link at the end of this post and read the whole article.

_____________________________________

Research finds that churches are 2x more likely to fear refugees than help them

 

The biblical case is clear for the Christian: caring for foreigners, immigrants, and the refugee is an irrefutable mandate.

 

Though we gratefully enjoy the benefits of American freedom today, from a biblical perspective we are not entitled to it, for it is far from the norm in the biblical and historical context.

In our fear of losing our blessed, but uniquely American comforts and freedoms, we have conflated ‘Christian’ with ‘American’.

 

 

I pray that the church will not miss one of the greatest ministry opportunities in the history of mankind out of a fear of cultural change and an idolization of safety. Now is the time to be salt and light.

http://www.zwemercenter.com/why-the-church-must-love-the-refugee/

25
May
17

Calvinism and a House Divided

Another insightful article from Jeff Weddle about the inconsistencies of Calvinism.

anti-itch meditation

If there were a sixth point to Calvinism’s TULIP, it would be Meticulous Determinism. Unfortunately, this would make it TULIPM, which doesn’t sound right. Perhaps TULIMP?

Meticulous Determinism is best defined by The Westminster Confession of Faith like so:

God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass.

This includes sin and bad stuff.

One of the particularly bad things that has occurred in the course of human events is demon possession. Demons make people crazy. They throw them into fires and convulse them and all manner of other physically harmful things.

Jesus took the opportunity to demonstrate His divinity by casting out demons.

On one particular day, Jesus was charged with being a tool of Satan. Various Jewish religious leaders said the demons were cast out by the power of Satan.

Jesus said that…

View original post 242 more words

19
May
17

God’s Determinate Counsel and Other Things People Can Mess Up

This is the first time I’ve used the “reblog” option.

Jeff presents a logically argued examination of a topic that is so grossly misrepresented by extreme Calvinists.

(sorry about the format of the quoted scripture verse – it’s something I don’t seem to be able to fix. I strongly recommend a visit to the originating site to read the whole article.)

anti-itch meditation

A particular branch of Calvinism believes that everything is a result of God’s determinate counsel. Everything that happens, even sin, is a result of God’s ordination.

God said it should happen, therefore it happens.

In this elaborate structure, God, who makes people sin, is also released of blame. I have never been able to figure out why, nor has the Calvinist. “It’s a mystery” is the closest they will come to explaining it.

Which is fine, probably their safest answer, but it may also signify that the initial doctrine is illogical.

“Determinate counsel” appears one time in the Bible in Acts 2:23:

Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain

The “Him” is obviously Christ. “Determinate,” according to Thayer’s Greek Definitions, means, “to mark out the boundaries or limits, to ordain, determine, or appoint.” Counsel…

View original post 552 more words

25
Apr
17

On ANZAC day: Some overlooked realities behind the ANZAC myth.

Today is Anzac Day, commemorating the date of the landing of Anzac forces at Gallipoli on 25th April 1915.

While it is customary to remember the sacrifices made by a generation of young men in wartime, celebrating bravery and heroism, there is an aspect that is always ignored.

When we say ‘lest we forget’, we choose not to remember some very uncomfortable things.

What Does Glorifying The ANZAC Myth Say About Our Attitudes To Violent Men Today? by Nick Irving

http://junkee.com/what-does-glorifying-the-anzac-myth-say-about-our-attitudes-to-violent-men-today/76563




Blog Stats

  • 75,379 hits

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 235 other followers