THANK YOU, VETERANS!!! (Today is “Veteran’s Day”)
This is the flag that stands in the front yard of the Watts home today. I’m not overreaching when i say: if it were not for the brave men and women who have served (and died for) our country, that flag would not be there today.
THIS SUNDAY, 11/16
CHOIR: Great & Mighty
PREACHER: Jim Gerlt
ADULT CHOIR NEWS
Christmas Musical Rehearsal THIS SUNDAY, 11/16, 4:30-6pm! (Choir Warm-Up Room)
ALSO….Christmas Musical Rehearsal: Sunday, 11/23, 4:30-6pm!
NOTICE: CHANGE OF DATE FOR CHRISTMAS MUSICAL PERFORMANCE – To buy a little time, I have postponed the Christmas Musical ONE WEEK to Sunday evening, Dec. 14th.
Rehearsals: Wed. evenings at 7:15 in BERGSTROM HALL.
11/16 – Great and Mighty
11/23 – One of These Morning’s (From “Southern Sundays” – Encore Performance!)
11/30 – NO CHOIR
12/7 – Maybe Someday (from “For Unto Y’all”)
12/14 – Lonesome Star (From “For Unto Y’all” – I will explain context)
12/21 – Carol of the Bells
Rehearsals: Sundays at 4pm. Bergstrom Hall.
THE NATURAL PROGRESSION OF SIN…AND OF GRACE…
Below is a quote from one of my HBU professors, Dr. Michael Ward, during recent class discussion. I’ve read it several times, gaining new insight with each reading. I asked him if I could share it:
“One of the clearest indications that one is not in a state of grace is that one begins to undo oneself, to rot from within, cancerously feeding off one’s own remaining strength. Grace is a virtuous circle, – every new growth in grace blooming from within the one before, like the unfolding petals of a rose, and attracting bees and butterflies who go on to pollinate and spread the beauty (“unto him who has shall more be given”). Ungrace is a vicious circle – every new sin exposing one to new temptations and new depredations (“unto him who has not, even what he has shall be taken away”).
Dr. Michael Ward, Senior Research Fellow, Blackfriars Hall, University of Oxford; Professor of Apologetics, Houston Baptist University
THE “ME” GENERATION – AND HOW THEY GOT THERE…
Spot-on blog written by one of my HBU classmates, Jamie Hay. She lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
FORMER MUSLIM, NABEEL QURESHI – HIS STORY OF DISCOVERING CHRIST
Dr. Nabeel Qureshi is a former devout Muslim who was convinced of the truth of the Gospel through historical reasoning and a spiritual search for God. Since his conversion, he has dedicated his life to spreading the Gospel through teaching, preaching, writing, and debating.
I keep up with Qureshi for a couple of reasons: (1) his insight into Islam & Muslim culture, and (2) he holds the same type of degree I am now pursuing (Masters Degree in Christian Apologetics.)
Qureshi’s first book, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, is now available – I have a copy in my library.
Qureshi has given lectures at universities and seminaries throughout North America, including New York University, Rutgers, the University of North Carolina, the University of Ottawa, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Biola University. He has participated in 17 moderated, public debates around North America, Europe, and Asia. His focus is on the foundations of the Christian faith and the early history and teachings of Islam.
Nabeel Qureshi is a member of the speaking team at Ravi Zacharias International Ministries. He holds an MD from Eastern Virginia Medical School, an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University, and an MA from Duke University in Religion.
“5 REASONS TO SUSPECT THAT JESUS NEVER EXISTED”
In response to this Salon.com editorial (link below), I would like to write a blog entitled, “Reasons You Don’t Know What You’re Talking About.”
I actually read the blog back in September when it was published. Quite frankly, i was interested. If Jesus didn’t exist, I’m quitting my job and finding a different career. (Of course, I already knew what I’m about to tell you.) :))
Their “5 Reasons” fail because they completely disregard historical and literary scholarship. Each “reason” is nothing new, having been used hundreds of times to try and discredit Jesus Christ.
But it’s the very first “reason” that caught my eye. Well, not the “reason” as much as the expert they quote to support their “reason.” Their expert is Dr. Bart Ehrman, Professor of Religious Studies at UNC and author of numerous books. Ehrman is a smart man, describing himself as “an agnostic with atheistic leanings.”
What struck me as odd that Salon used Ehrman to support their argument is that Ehrman, himself, boldly states that JESUS DID EXIST. Ehrman writes, “The reality is that whatever else you may think about Jesus, he certainly did exist.” **Quote taken from Ehrman’s book, “Did Jesus Exist? The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth,” (New York: HarperOne, 2012), 4. (I’ve read the entire book.)
Dr. Jeremiah Johnston is a professor at Houston Baptist University, focusing primarily on the New Testament, Extra-canonical gospels, and Apologetics. About this blog from Salon.com, he commented: “There is more evidence that Jesus of Nazareth lived than for the most famous figures of the first century and yet [we see blogs like this continue to be written & published.]”
Just a reminder – don’t swallow whole everything your hear and read. Perform your due diligence. Do your homework. Check the facts. Trust me – if someone can prove Christianity false I want to know about it. But,…the tomb is still empty. And after 20 centuries, no one can explain away the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“LEAVERS” – IF YOU’RE A PARENT OF A TEEN OR A YOUTH PASTOR/WORKER – READ THIS…
Outstanding blog on the vital discipline of “critical thinking.” Here’s an excerpt:
Author, Nancy Pearcey, cites a teen who, when struggling with their faith, said, “I need my parents to think ideas through with me, not just judge them.” [Pearcey continues], “I became a leaver myself at age sixteen. I was not rebellious. Nor was I trying to construct a moral smokescreen for bad choices. I was simply asking, How do I know Christianity is true? None of the adults I consulted offered any answers.”
“Fuller Seminary recently conducted a study on teens who become leavers in college. The researchers uncovered the single most significant factor in whether young people stand firm in their Christian convictions or leave them behind. And it’s not what most of us might expect. Join a campus ministry group? A Bible study? Important though those things are, the most decisive factor is whether students had a safe place to work through their doubts and questions before leaving home.” (End of excerpt)
I began teaching our BHBC College Students a few weeks ago. This past Sunday evening we had a Question/Answer session. I told them, “You can ask whatever you want to ask. There are no topics off limits. This is a safe place to ask questions.” Based on this blog, I believe we’re headed in the right direction
CHRISTIANITY ON TRIAL: LCU SPECIAL EVENT – 11/13
Mark Lanier, is not only a successful Houston attorney, he’s a committed Christian, astute apologist, and brilliant author. RSVP for the free event by clicking on the link below. I cannot attend as I am already committed to the High Point Village Gala scheduled for the same evening.
QUOTE(s) OF THE WEEK
“Evil is never so evil as when done in the name of religion.” (I believe this quote – I can’t remember where I first read it – is a paraphrase of a similar quote by 17th century, French scientist, Blaise Pascal: “Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.”)
“There is no form of sinfulness to which you are addicted which Christ cannot remove.” – Charles Spurgeon
“Oswald Chambers notes that when a believer obeys God’s word, ‘that second the supernatural rush of the life of God invades him instantly. The dominating power of the world, the flesh and the devil is paralyzed, not by your act, but because your act has linked you on to God and his redemptive power.” James Denison
“The [Jerusalem] Temple Mount is the most sensitive kilometer on earth.” (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; 11/2; The Times of Israel)
LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE:
I lost count of how many times I showed this video during my Youth Pastor years. The teens actually loved it. (Well,…most of them did.):))
Also, here’s a bonus…
And this…. (little did we know that Elvis was not only still alive – but was an Iowa Hawkeye fan!)
GRACE NOTES: “Paranormal Activity”
Having just come through Halloween, it’s important to know the truth of Scripture where the paranormal is concerned…
Soli Deo Gloria, Nick