Friday, January 25, 2013

Isn't that amazing?

A "New Testament without Anti-Semitism" was published a few years ago by the Judean Publishing House of Jerusalem. Presumably to make the New Testament more agreeable to Jews, this “translation” removes or relabels anything in the New Testament that places blame on the Jews for the death of Christ.

For example, Acts 2:23 has been changed from “... ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain” to “... ye have taken and Roman hands have crucified and slain.” Similarly, Acts 2:36 and 3:13 are changed in this “translation” as well. But biblical scholars state that there is no Greek manuscript evidence that supports these changes. Other changes include substituting “minister” or “chief minister” for “priest” and “high priest;” calling the Pharisees “Separates;” and substituting the word “Bible” for “Mosaic Law,” “Jewish Law,” or simply “law.”

Oxford University Press has published a “translation” of the Bible which modifies verses deemed offensive to feminists and left-handed individuals. As a result, the Lord’s Prayer is addressed to “Our Father-Mother in heaven” and it is no longer those on “the right hand” of God who go to heaven, but those on the “mighty” hand of God.

It is obvious that the editors of such “translations” are more interested in transforming the word of God into a political platform for expressing their own views. What will be the end of it?

Kyle Campbell

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The king's four wives

Once there was a king who had four wives. He loved the fourth wife the most and gave her riches, wealth, and the best of care. He also loved the third wife and showed her off to other nations and made her a very popular person. He also loved the second wife. She was always there for him, able to help him with his problems. Then there was the first wife. She loved the king very deeply but unfortunately the king never loved her back. As a result, the first wife was lonely and neglected.

One day the king became ill and knew that he would soon die. He thought of his life and his four wives and thought, “When I die I will be all alone!” He then went desperately to his fourth wife and said, “I have loved you deeply and have bestowed on you riches, wealth and honor. Now that I am about to die, will you follow and keep me company?” The fourth wife instantly said, “No,” and walked away. This struck the king very hard. He then went to his third wife and said, “I have loved you, bragged about you to other nations and have made you a very popular person. Now that I am about to die, will you follow and keep me company?” The third wife replied, “No! Life is too good. When you die I will just remarry.” This once again struck the king very deeply to his heart. He then turned to his second wife and said, “You have been a wonderful companion and have always helped me with my problems. Now that I am about to die, will you follow and keep me company?” The second wife replied, “I am very sorry but I cannot help you this time. I have my own life to lead. The farthest I can go with you is to your graveside.” Her answer cut him like a knife. Then he heard a small voice. It said, “I will follow you. I will go with you wherever you go.” The king turned around and saw his first wife. As he beheld her poor clothing and her sickly appearance it grieved him even more that he had been neglecting her all this time. Then the king knew his time had come. With his last breath he cried out with a loud voice and said, “I should have taken better care of you while I had the chance!”

In a sense, we all have these four wives. The fourth wife is our body. No matter how much we love it and give it nourishment, when we die it will leave us. The third wife is our riches and wealth. No matter how much we have or how proud we are of it, when we die, it will just go to someone else. The second wife is our family and friends. They are of great help to us in this life but when we die, the farthest they can go with us is to our graveside. The first wife is our soul! It is the only one that will remain with us when we die. Sadly, it is often the most neglected. The simple message of this story is to take care of your soul while you still have the time! It is all you will take with you in the life to come.

Jonathan Glaesemann

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

If life were a fairytale

I saw a Facebook post a while back by a friend who evidently was having a frustrating day. The post read, “If life were only a fairytale.” The point was that if life were a fairytale, things would be much easier -- an interesting concept that we will now examine. 

First of all, life is not a fairytale; there is no use wishing that it were. In fact, life is better than a fairytale. A fairytale usually depicts the perfect life or someone living happily ever after with no problems. Life is different in that it is much harder, but this is what makes it better. We cannot grow into a mature Christian if everything is easy for us. The hard times are what mold us into a strong, wise servant of God (Romans 5:3-4; James 1:2-4). The hard times not only bring us closer to God, but also closer to our brethren as we deal with our problems together. In this way, we get the chance to help one another and lay up treasure in heaven!

Life is also better because it is real; a fairytale is only fiction. Why waste your time dreaming about a perfect life with no problems when you know it doesn’t exist? Why not face reality with all its burdens knowing one day you will have the chance to lay all of those burdens down at the Master’s feet and enter a place with joys beyond imagining; a place where God is; a place where the former things have passed away; a place where we will be forever. And the best part? It’s not a fairytale!

Jonathan Glaesemann

Friday, January 11, 2013

Planned Parenthood in 2011

Every Christian who is concerned about the ungodliness of abortion was dismayed by a report released last Tuesday. Planned Parenthood Federation of America reported that they performed 333,964 abortions in 2011. Simple math reveals that the number of abortions performed equates to one abortion every 94 seconds.

The Bible does not make a distinction in prenatal and postnatal life as does man. In Jeremiah 1:5, God relates the fact that Jeremiah was chosen for his great prophetic work before he was ever born. In Isaiah 49:1, 5, Isaiah is speaking of the Messiah. He was called by name before He was formed in the womb. David was regarded by God as a human being even as he was being “curiously wrought” in the womb (Psalm 139:13-16). John leaped in his mother’s womb when his mother greeted Mary (Luke 1:41, 44).

The biblical position is that life begins at conception (Genesis 25:21-22; Numbers 12:12; Ruth 1:11; Job 3:3, 16; Hosea 12:3). Pregnancy is referred to as being “with child” seven times in the New Testament (Matthew 1:18, 23; 24:19; Mark 13:17; Luke 21:23; 1 Thessalonians 5:3; Revelation 12:2). “Fetus” is simply a stage of development (e.g., infant, child, adolescent, adult). It is dishonest to pretend it is “less than human.”

Jeremiah, David and everyone is treated by God as human life in the mother. Therefore, the beginning of life is the direct result of human procreation and the indirect result of divine creation from nothing. Make no mistake: the implication is clear. Abortion is murder, and as horrible as school shootings are, we need to put them in perspective as to what happens every second in this country.

Kyle Campbell

Monday, January 7, 2013

"The kingdom that will never be destroyed"

Recorded in Daniel 2 is a dream that Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, had which the prophet Daniel interpreted. It concerned a statue of great height made of several different materials. The head of gold represent the Babylonian Empire, the breast and arms of silver represent the Medo-Persian Empire, the belly and thighs of brass represent the Grecian Empire, and the legs of iron and feet of clay represent the Roman Empire. In the dream, a great stone was cut out without hands and crushed the statue into many pieces. The stone settled in that place and became a great mountain and filled the whole earth. Even after these great kingdoms would pass away, the stone would remain.

The stone represents a far greater kingdom than that of man. This kingdom God would set up and establish forever. That kingdom is none other than the church which has already been established and is being spread throughout the world today. This lesson is a great reminder that no matter how much man seeks to establish himself in this world, his work will eventually vanish into nothing more than a piece of history. However God’s work will always thrive and will be the only thing standing in the end. Who will you put your trust in? Someone whose works will vanish away or someone who holds the keys to your eternity in His hands?

Jonathan Glaesemann

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Remembering the past

A couple of years ago, I finished a long-procrastinated project of digitizing old home videos. They go back ten years to when my son is a newborn. I've gotten to watch all these wonderful moments multiple times and thank God for all of His blessings.

While I have enjoyed the past (and New Year's Day is a good time to think about the past), I have to remember that the most important direction to look is the future. I love seeing my children as babies, but I want to see them in heaven most of all. Because of this, I need to do my best to remind them of God's law (Ephesians 6:4), and live my life dedicated to the Lord (Galatians 2:20).

It has been an immense blessing to see both of my children become Christians, and to see them grow in Jesus Christ. If I can stay the course, I may be successful in helping them see the importance of being a lifelong, devout Christian. If so, and if I “hold fast the profession of my faith without wavering” (Hebrews 10:23), we can all be around the throne of God and praise Him forever (Revelation 7:13-17).

Kyle Campbell