Lessons From a Lightning-Struck Statue of Jesus

By now you have likely heard of the giant statue of Jesus that caught on fire after being struck by lightning. This event has some wondering what it means. Was this some sort of sign from God? Or was it just some random event?

Tim Haile of the Parkway church of Christ has just written a thought-provoking article about this event in which he briefly discusses divine providence, signs from heaven, and the nature of faith. I encourage you to check out his article — Lessons From a Lightning-Struck Statue of Jesus.

A Lesson from the Gulf Oil Spill

On April 20th, an oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico causing oil to begin spewing into the water from the floor of the Gulf, about a mile underwater. After more than six weeks, the oil is still flowing. BP is working to try to stop the leak while other efforts are underway to try to deal with this disaster both in the water and along the coast.

No matter what work is done at the surface to deal with the oil that has already spilled into the Gulf, all of the efforts will be in vain unless/until the leak is stopped. The cleanup is important, but the cleanup will never be successful if the oil keeps spewing from the leak.
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Living Together Before Marriage Does Not Make a Stronger Marriage

As morality in our country has declined, naturally we have seen a rise in immorality. One visible example of this is the number of couples who live together before marriage. As time goes on, more and more people are either indifferent to the practice or are a promoter of it.

One of the arguments that is commonly used to justify the practice is that it can make the couple’s eventual marriage even stronger. During the time of cohabitation, the couple can get to know one another better, learn how they handle a marriage-type relationship together, and can get a better idea of whether or not they are compatible. If they live together first and it goes well, they can be confident of their relationship going into marriage. If it does not go well, they get to find that out before marriage.
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People Are Not Born Gay

Many homosexuals and those who support their lifestyle have argued that those who are gay are so because of their genetic makeup, i.e., they were born gay. This was given as a reason why we cannot say that homosexuality is wrong because, after all, they cannot help it. Supposedly, there was scientific evidence to back up this claim.

Reasoning from the Bible, Christians have taught that homosexuality is a chosen practice, not a trait that was hardwired into one’s DNA. After all, the Bible calls homosexuality a sin (Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9; 1 Timothy 1:9-10). And we know that God would not allow some people to be born in a state that would guarantee their damnation because “God is not one to show partiality” (Acts 10:35). Paul even alludes to some in Corinth who had once engaged in this practice, but had given it up when they turned to the Lord (“Such were some of you…” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

So we had this apparent conflict. Should we believe the word of God, or scientific evidence?

Well, it turns out that the American Psychological Association is now admitting that there is no evidence that a gene exists that makes one gay. You can read about it here: APA revises ‘gay gene’ theory.

There are surely many factors that contribute to one’s decision to engage in homosexuality. In the same way, there are many factors that might contribute to one’s decision to lie, steal, commit adultery, or murder. But that does not change the fact that these actions are sinful. Instead of looking for excuses for sinful behavior, we must simply repent and follow the Lord.

Jesus is, “to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation” (Hebrews 5:9). Make the choice to follow Him. As the Hebrew writer went on to say, “let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us” (Hebrews 12:1).

    Miss California & Gay Marriage – A Different Perspective

    Much has been said in the past couple of weeks about Miss USA pageant contestant Carrie Prejean (Miss California) and her answer to a judge’s question about same-sex marriage. Ms. Prejean responded by stating her belief that marriage should be between one man and one woman.

    The subject of same-sex marriage is a very divisive issue in this country. There has been much speculation about the possibility that her answer could have cost her the Miss USA crown. In terms of winning the contest, it would have been safer for her to give a more politically correct answer. But instead, she stated what she believes, regardless of the consequences in the competition.

    As a result of this, many Christians have expressed admiration for this woman for stating her beliefs. While I am thankful that someone was willing to openly state this belief about marriage in a forum as public as the Miss USA pageant, I think we ought to be hesitant to lift her up as a role model of faith, particularly for young women and girls.

    It is good that Ms. Prejean was willing to state her belief in Biblical truth, that marriage is between one man and one woman (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:4-5), even if it meant she might lose the competition. But what about the Bible teaching that says women are to dress in modest apparel (1 Timothy 2:9), and that it is a shameful thing for one’s body to be on display (Isaiah 47:2-3)?

    One part of the competition which the contestants were judged on was a swimsuit competition. Miss California, of course, participated. In fact, most of the news reports on the internet about this story that I have seen have had a big picture of Ms. Prejean in her bikini from this portion of the pageant.  She obviously has no scruples against showing off her body in public.

    Some may think I’m being too picky and that I should just be happy that she stated her belief that marriage is only between one man and one woman. I am happy she stated her opposition to the growing same-sex marriage movement. But we should not think that as long as we agree on whatever the issue of the day is, other things don’t matter. Sin is sin. Whatever the Bible teaches is important, no matter what topic it is.

    It is important that out children and young people are taught about God’s design and plan for marriage. It is also important that these young people, particularly young women and girls, are taught to be modest in all manners of life: speech, conduct, and dress.

      The Inauguration of a New President

      Tuesday, January 20, Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States.

      I know there are many Christians who are not happy about this. Given some of his positions and beliefs, this is understandable. However, I won’t take time to discuss the grievances now.

      The New Testament does not teach that we must be happy with our leaders. It does not teach that we must agree with them either. We do not even have to follow and support them above and beyond what the law requires of us.

      What does the New Testament teach we must do in regards to our leaders?
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      False Knowledge

      O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called ‘knowledge’ [science, KJV] – which some have professed and thus gone astray from the faith” (1 Timothy. 6:20-21).

      Tonight I was able to watch Ben Stein’s movie, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. It is a documentary about the efforts to silence and discredit those who offer an alternative to the theory of evolution – namely, Intelligent Design. It was very well done and I highly recommend you see it.
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