Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

I thank God for my life, freedom, health, wealth, and safety;

for his salvation from my old nature; that he gave his Son to accomplish it;

for his abiding presence; that his wisdom is with me;

that I have a purpose in his creation (and know what it is), and am equipped to perform it;

that my family, or much of it, is still with me; that nearly all of them are believers;

for friends of yesterday and today;

that my country is free (for now); for those who gave their lives and those who put theirs at risk so it can remain free;

that I have days left beyond these, and an endless life yet to come.

And I thank my King, Jesus Christ, for making all of the above possible.

The Living Word

Wednesday, October 31st, 2007

The fourth reason I attend church is to hear the Word of God, though perhaps not in the way that you might first think.

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Any Given Sunday

Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

In the first days of the church, believers in Jesus were mostly Jews or proselytes to Judaism. On Saturday they would go to the synagogue or to the Temple if in Jerusalem. Early in the morning, often on Sunday, believers would meet together in an assembly of their own that has come to be known as the Gathering. As believers were expelled from synagogues and the temple was destroyed, the Gathering began to take on the function of these institutions, and over time would develop into what is now our modern church service.

So what was the original Gathering like?

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Why I Attend Church

Friday, October 12th, 2007

I read a homily by John Chrysostom from 1600+ years ago, in which he mentions the church attendance patterns of various types of people in his day, among them are – those who stop going altogether, those who attend maybe once a year or at random, those who attend regularly but with a frivolous attitude, those who make a show of being zealous but cause division. I was amused how little things have changed, as I’ve recognized the same patterns today. But getting to the topic, I’ll start out by saying that I don’t attend church because I’m supposed to. I won’t invest precious time doing anything without perceiving its worth. And that is probably true for anyone. I’ve known many people who say they should attend church but don’t.

So whether to attend and how often comes down to perceived worth. For me, there are four things I value about the local church that motivate me to attend. I’ll cover just one this week.

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Where have all the generals gone?

Monday, October 1st, 2007

It’s been awhile since I did a gaming post. Part of the problem is that fall is my wargaming off-season. No particular reason, other than the flurry of activities this time of year pushes gaming off the agenda. I did have a wargamer friend in from Seattle two weeks ago and we broke out For The People II, Mark Hermann’s excellent strategic-level American Civil War card-driven game. Click here for a well-done review of the game. We didn’t have much time to play and actually spent more time looking at an online game he is playing.

Now by off-season, I mean no ftf play. During this time I usually leave one game setup for solitaire play. Aging’s effect on memory is actually helpful for solitairing card games. Once I play the Union turn, it may be a day or two before I play the Confederate turn, and by then I will have forgotten what cards are in the Union hand. Heck, sometimes I forget after 20 seconds. :p

The Praise and Worship Service

Sunday, September 30th, 2007

All forms of biblical praise, and some of the forms of worship, survive in today’s worship service. How worship services should be conducted or what type of music should be present is sometimes a matter of controversy, but for the most part, modern Christian worship services faithfully follow a biblical model. What lacks in modern Christian praise and worship is not in what is done at the assembly, but that praise and worship are neglected at a personal level.

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Midday At The Well

Wednesday, September 19th, 2007

In the days of patriarchs (Abraham, Jacob, et al), worship was performed at an altar (a stack of unworked stones). Once the law of Moses was given, worship was prescribed to occur at the tabernacle before the presence of God. Once the temple was built in Jerusalem, worship was to be performed at the temple’s altar or when facing the temple.

After the days of Solomon, when the 10 tribes of Israel broke from Judah and the rule of the royal line of David, they established their own worship on the mountains of Ephraim, which later became part of Samaria. This became a point of controversy between the Jews and Samaritans. It is in this context when one day Jesus came to a well in Samaria.

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On Praise

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

As worship is a physical posture reflecting an understanding of who God is, praise is the declaration of who God is.

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Colossus

Monday, September 10th, 2007

A few posts back I talked about the classic boardgame Titan and how its being republished. I discovered a desktop Java program called Colossus which provides online or solitaire play of Titan. I’ve only played it solitaire as a time killer when the brain is fried, but the AI opponent is not bad. Very solid strategically on the Masterboard, though it lacks a little on tactical defense. Still good enough to make winning a challenge and great for learning Titan or trying it out to see if you will like it. If you’ve never played Titan, but try Colossus and find it intriguing, be warned that ftf Titan will play much more slowly and human opponents will be tougher in tactical combat.

On Worship

Thursday, September 6th, 2007

If you are not a believer in Jesus Christ, you may wonder what Christians mean by worship and praise. You may have been to a church or seen a service on television and heard a musical segment of the service described as praise and worship.

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