I am preparing a Bible study based on the Book of the Revelation. While some are tempted to use the words of the author to predict the end times, the book is primarily concerned with chronicling the concerns and problems of the early church. Most were being threatened both externally and internally. The Roman government was not always a friend to the church and many local congregations experienced internal turmoil and dissension.
Do you believe that the Christian church in America today is under attack - either from without or from within? How can the church strengthen itself internally so as to defend itself adequately against the external slings and arrows?
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Recently I had an opportunity to worship at First Christian Church in Huntington Beach. Their guest speaker for the evening was James Caviezel who played Christ in Mel Gibson's film "The Passion of the Christ." During his talk James mentioned that Christians are not merely to "fit into" the exisiting culture but to "stand out" as a witness to Christ and His church. In what ways do we "fit into" the norms, values and customs of our society? In what ways should Christians "stand out?" If we do live in a secular society how can Christians exert their influence?
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Monday, March 24, 2008
The recent flap over the preaching of Mr. Obama's pastor rekindles a long standing conversation about what should or should not be proclaimed from the pulpit. Just "how far" should a pastor go in addressing what might be called "social" issues? Some hold that preachers should "stick with the Bible" while others believe that all social issues have a theological content and ought be addressed. Do pastors have the right and/or responsibility to talk about race, the war, the environment, social justice, poverty, abortion, capital punishment etc. from the pulpit or should these be left for other forums where there can be an exchange of ideas?
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Jesus said: "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes unto the Father but by me." What does this mean for all those who do not follow or believe in Christ as Lord and Savior? Is it impossible for them to "know" God or "come" to God? Is there salvation for those who do not practice Christianity? Is there a place in the heart of God - who created all things and all people - for those who practice Judaism, Islam, Hinduism etc? Is there only ONE way, one path that leads to both Abundant and Eternal life? Is God "big" enough and "loving" enough to welcome all into His kingdom or are Christians the "Chosen Ones?"
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Just returned from a pastor's conference in San Diego and enjoyed a six hour course entitled: "They Love Jesus But Not The Church." The main premise is this: Many young adults admire, honor, respect, worship and try to follow Christ, but they feel that the church, as an institution, gets in the way of people living out their faith in meaningful ways. Recent studies indicate that many young people believe that the church consists of fundamental, homophobic, self-righteous folk who attempt to mold Christ into an American. They believe that they trivalize Christ with slogans, bumper stickers, t-shirts, posters and "Jesus Action Figures" and Jesus Bobbleheads. They also fear that some churches attempt to promote/push a certain political agenda. Comments?
Sunday, February 17, 2008
In the recent issue of Time magazine, Tim Russert, host of "Meet the Press" was aksed "Is there anyone you want to interview whom you haven't yet?" Russert would like to sit down with Bruce Springsteen! So, how about you? Who would you like to interview and why? What specific questions would you ask?
Have a blessed week!
Have a blessed week!