In the Old Testament book of Haggai there is an interesting account of extremely troubled economic times. Some of the children of Israel had returned home after 70 years in captivity. They were trying to re-establish themselves in their homeland, but everything they touched seemed to turn to dust. They couldn't understand why.
At Gateway we have been in a series on Sunday nights entitled "Foundations in Apologetics" and produced by Ravi Zacharias International Ministries. Apologetics does not mean we are apologize for what we believe, but rather that we are defending what we believe. The Bible says, "But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect," (1 Peter 3:15, NIV). That is what apologetics is.
Last week we began to discuss the importance of having a time of personal daily devotions. Speaking on this subject, D.L. Moody said, "A man can no more take in a supply of grace for the future than he can eat enough for the next six months, or take sufficient air into his lungs at one time to sustain life for a week. We must draw upon God's boundless store of grace from day to day as we need it." That's true.
In my last article I broached the subject of life after death. I mentioned that everyone was going to spend eternity somewhere. That was a problem for some people. Let me explain.
Most people believe in heaven. Few people believe in hell. Many Christians don't even believe in hell. I have two questions for them. Why is it you choose to believe in heaven but not hell? The same Bible that teaches that there is an eternal heaven also teaches that there is an eternal place of judgment. Why do you choose to believe the one but not the ...
We are all saddened by the events of last weekend that resulted in the tragic loss of life of a young deputy sheriff, Brian Lamar Mahaffey. Death is never easy, but it is particularly hard when it comes suddenly and unexpectedly. Dr. Billy Graham, writes, "Christians are not immune to the fear of death. Death is not always 'a beautiful release,' but an enemy which separates. There is a certain mystery to it. It does not respect the young or the old, the good or the evil, the Christian or the heathen."
Jill Carrattini, managing editor for the Ravi Zacharias e-newsletter, "Slice of Infinity" writes, "one of the comments that I hear most often as a reason for rejecting Christianity is that of its followers: 'Christians are so hypocritical!' 'The problem I have with Christ is that his followers do him more harm than good.' 'I am continually disappointed by Christians; why should I consider their religion?' 'The problem I have with Christianity is Christians.' I can try appealing to these voices to see the gap in their logic; I can try reasoning that the abuse of a religion must never stand ...
There is a popular misconception among people in general and even among some Christians. The misconception held my many today is that the Scriptures we have today are not an accurate copy of the originals but were changed by a deceptive church in the 4th Century. This idea, popularized by Dan Brown in the "DaVinci Code," might lead to breath-holding, action-packed adventure but it is not good history. The Councils which codified our modern Bible were not secret meetings of the church but open discussion of the information available, and they did not "invent" the Bible, the simply recognized the ...
Over the past few weeks we have been examining the claims of the book, "The Jesus Family Tomb." The authors of this work want their readers to believe that we now have hard physical evidence that Jesus did not rise from the dead, but rather has been found interred in what they claim is the family tomb.
Last week in this column I introduced the subject of the Jesus Family Tomb. According to the authors of the book by that title, this tomb, officially called the Talpiot Tomb, is the final resting place for Jesus of Nazareth. The authors claim that the odds for this tomb being the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth is 2.5 million to one in its favor. Startling odds. If it can be proven, the whole message of the New Testament is destroyed. So what are the facts?
Last week, being Easter, I wrote on the resurrection. Thomas Arnold, chair of modern History at Oxford, said, "I have been used for many years to study the histories of other times, and to examine and weigh the evidence of those who have written about them, and I know of no one fact in the history of mankind which is proved by better and fuller evidence of every sort, to the understanding of the fair inquirer, than the great sign which God hath given us that Christ died and rose again from the dead" (McDowell: "The New Evidence that Demands ...
There are two questions I often ask people who claim to be Christians. First, I ask them why they are Christians and second I ask them what I would have to do to make them doubt the validity of their faith. Now that second question may seem strange coming from a pastor, but it is a question that we as Christians must adequately answer.
I am in a series exploring the classic proofs for God. Let me clarify for you that these "proofs" are not final proof positive for God, rather they are more like clues or evidence which, when looked at, lead us to certain conclusions concerning the existence or, for some, the non-existence of God. Personally I find the clues given us by the arguments of these classic evidences compelling.
Last week I began a series of articles on the subject of evidences for God. While "no man has seen God" (God the Father that is-John 1:18), that doesn't mean that we cannot know that there is a God. (Psalm 19; Romans 1). Indeed that verse in John 1:18 goes on to say, "No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known" (John 1:18, ESV).
Lately I have been asked a recurring question by various individuals. The question is, "Can you prove there is a God?" Generally my first response to such a question is, "I can certainly give you the evidence for why I believe there is a God, but before I do that, I need to know, what evidence are you prepared to accept?"