Posts Tagged ‘God’

Antichrist: Islam’s Awaited Messiah, by Joel Richardson

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

One thing that makes interpretation of apocalyptic Bible prophecy difficult is the many disparate passages in scripture, so that the task of tying them together into a coherent and comprehensible, end-time narrative is daunting. Authors and teachers who attempt to do this very thing ironically often exacerbate this problem by injecting their own notions, arising from speculation on how the prophecies might play out, or through attempting to impose current political alignments onto prophetic passages. The result is that the body of thought in the Christian world on end-time prophecy is muddled, and Christians inadvertently present an uncertain message to non-Christians.

Occasionally, a work arises that brings clarity rather than confusion to our understanding. Such is the case with the opening chapters of Antichrist: Islam’s Awaited Messiah, where author Joel Richardson compares three principle characters of Islamic eschatology – the Mahdi, the returned prophet Isa (Jesus), and the Islamic antichrist Dijjal – with the three principals of Biblical eschatology – the Antichrist, False Prophet, and Messiah Jesus. Though characterized from opposing perspectives, the parallels between these persons is uncanny and immediately recognizable to anyone who has devoted time to reading and understanding Bible prophecy. (more…)

Why I Believe In God

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

I could give reasons why I should believe in God, with the obvious implication that you should, too. For example, I could say that I contemplated the physics of the universe and concluded that it must be made by design, and so it must have an ingenious, powerful and benevolent creator. But in my case, that is not so. I considered God’s works only after I believed.

I could say my life was messed up and I needed divine help to straighten it out. While I did need to clean up my act, that was not the reason either.

I could say that I have witnessed miracles that undermined all contrary argument and persuaded me beyond doubt that God is. But not until I believed did I ever see a miracle.

You see, I don’t accept God as a proposition, or concept, or personification of a creed or hope. God himself drew me, so I sought him out in turn. I love who he is, and desire his friendship. Therefore, I choose to follow him.

As Jesus said to his disciples, “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you…” and “No man can come to me, unless my Father draws him;”.

So it remains for each of us to, as the psalmist put it, “hear his voice and not harden your heart”.

We Had an Inkling

Monday, December 17th, 2007

Recently I had a chance to try the boardgame Inklings from Cactus Game Design with friends from church.

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Yes, There Is a Santa Claus

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

Absolutely true. There is.

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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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House of Prayer

Wednesday, October 24th, 2007

The third reason I attend church (or church activities, like home groups) is for prayer. Now in practice, I pray very little at church these days, especially compared to prayer on my own. The role of prayer in church has diminished in recent times.

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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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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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