Media Would Hamstring Jesus’ Church

The Houston Chronicle site questions why a church in Seattle buys a piece of property in Portland.  Why would the Houston community care what a church in Portland does?  The only reason I can believe the story was carried is because there is an agenda behind the reporting.  That agenda is to call into question a church’s rights. See quote below.  Just because a precinct voted for one democratic candidate does not mean that none of them follow Jesus.  Come on Houston Chronicle, Jesus is apolitical.  The innuendo in the national media against the church and Christianity is appalling.

The Mars Hill Church bought the vacant, 106-year-old stone church last week and announced a gathering for Sept. 10. Some residents wonder what the church is doing in a precinct that went for Democratic Gov. John Kitzhaber last fall by more than 90 percent,the Oregonian reported (http://bit.ly/nfHj2X ).

Getting on the Amazon Kindle Fire Truck

Amazon, the company,  introduced a device today that has the tech world buzzing.  Me too, because,  I need a

 keyboard for blogging but some times I am just researching and only consuming.   I’d love a handheld source for good movies.  I’m not much of a gamer.  But there are plenty of uses for  a consuming device like iPad or Android Tablets such as the Kindle Fire.  So I am into the specs and will be watching what the first consumer reviews of this product say about it.   It was interesting that the Kindle 3 started with too many bad reviews on Amazon for my tastes.   But those reviews slowly changed to be more positive and today I enjoy my Kindle 3.

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An atheist’s ethical dilemma

I’ve included the complete blog below from a Guardian blog because it presents this is a dilemma for anyone, not just atheists.  So what do you think?

This dilemma reminded me of a dilemma I was engaged in at a checkout register in the USA.   As the female clerk was giving me change back from payment for groceries, she and I had several cordial verbal exchanges about the change we were making from my payment, ie, potential errors she had made.  The counters were close enough that other clerks could have heard our back and forth.

When I stepped outside the store, I realized that ultimately she had overpaid me in change. I went back in and said that she had overpaid and handed her the change (less than 50 US cents).  Again other employees could have seen and heard.

As I left the store, my thoughts went negative.  “How many total exchanges did we make just to get the right change?”  3-5  “How did other employees think about her competency on the job?”  “What if she is a new employee?”   And then the ultimate thought, “Oh my God,   I could have just gotten that lady fired!”

Her job was not worth my getting the change right in the big picture.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/andrewbrown/2011/sep/20/atheist-ethical-dilemma

How should you respond on discovering that an unpaid item had fallen into your shopping bag?

I came back to the office this morning and found an atheist on his knees. He was mopping up some milk that had spilled all over the refrigerator and then on the floor. “Ah,” I said, “You’re proving that it is quite unnecessary to be a believer to act ethically or altruistically.” He gave me an unappreciative look. When he had finished – and it wasn’t even his milk – he told me a more complicated ethical dilemma.

The day before, he had returned from a trip to Waitrose and found at the bottom of his shopping bag a cheese slicer which he had not paid for. He hadn’t put it there. It had somehow been knocked or dislodged into the bag. But it wasn’t on his receipt, either. Clearly the moral thing to do is to return it to the shop.

But the dilemma is whether to do so openly. If he goes up to the customer service counter, and says that he found it in his shopping bag, will they not suspect him of being a repentant thief? That is humiliating and awkward. On the other hand, if he simply smuggles it back into the shop, and then tries getting it from his pocket back to the display of cheese slicers, sod’s law ensures that he will be caught on CCTV, and regarded as an even more sinister failed shoplifter.

What, readers, should my colleague do?

Shalom

I attended a conference recently where the term shalom was used related to the wholeness Christians can and should experience in walking out the life Jesus designed us to have–though fallen.  I decided that I should look into what that word meant in it’s context.  That meant trying to find out what it meant in the Jewish context.

 

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The Double Bottom Line

Macmillan Bicycle

Bicycle

For Bike Gallery owner Jay Graves, a double bottom line is all he has known — business lessons passed down from his father and lessons he’s passing along to his children.

“…treat not just your customers but your co-workers like you would like to be treated.”

See here for the full story.

Christian View on the Gay Issue More Well Defined

The Resurrection from Grünewald's Isenheim Alt...

Here is an excellent, almost position paper, on Christianity and a gay orientation.  I believe this position affirms Christian who have same sex attractions and are attempting to deal with those attractions in the same way a bisexual person would deal with unholy same sex attraction such as lust.

A campus based group asks an actively gay leader of the group to step down.   It appears that he was acting out his same sex attractions and thus seemingly crossed the line where Jesus asked His followers to remain pure.   We have forgotten so much of what Jesus calls us to remember today.   I will only list a few principles from the paper here and put a link below to the whole paper.

1. The point is not homosexuality; the point is the Lordship of Jesus.  

This point is not to focus on sexual sin, most of us have committed some type of sexual sin, and because we are sinners we need the saving grace of Jesus.   Jesus is our only hope of salvation.  We must cling to him.

2. We cannot pick and choose which parts of Jesus to which we surrender. 

Thank you brother!!!  How we Christians so distort our theology as we do this.  We live in a warped world–let’s not warp it further by being selective about what we choose to obey and believe.

3. This is not a political statement about the place of homosexuals in society. 

Absolutely, and Christians need to admit there is a difference.  Also non-Christian homosexuals need to give Christians the latitude that they need and want to obey their Jesus.

4. Jesus saves sinners.  

This is his main purpose.   Homosexuals must realize that this is Jesus’ purpose and we are only following Him when we proclaim this to the world.   He asked us to do that also–to proclaim His message to the world.

 

Update:   I failed to give a link to the original article.  It can be found here.  Here is another great link.

 

 

The Pursuit: God Pursues Us

Molnár József: Ábrahám kiköltözése

And so, man fell. He has sinned and no longer has a vital face-to-face relationship with God his Creator. In the fall our hearts are hardened and we live in the Kingdom of Darkness. The Fall was devastating and the pain it caused is immense. Despite rebellion and turning from God, He does not give up on us. In fact, he pursues us.

The pursuit begins with God’s call to Abraham and His promise to build a family through him that would bless the whole world (Genesis 12:1-3). The promise was delayed for many years. I see much in my life that was delayed. I believe so I will mature. I try to control and take matters into my own grasp. That never works out effectively.

Abraham finally comes to a place where he felt it necessary to take matters into his own hands. In doing that, he fathers a son Ishmael with Hagar, his handmaiden. Yet, God’s plan for a son of promise still stands, and 13 years later God comes to Abraham to reaffirm and broaden His covenant with him. See the “repair” of God (Genesis 17:1-8). God comes to Abram. He walks with him. He affirms Abram. He affirms His calling on Abram. He then makes an everlasting covenant with him. God promises blessing and offspring. He change Abram’s name to Abraham.

Thus began man’s faith relationship with God. Faith is a difficult thing, however, for us to grasp and apply. Later, God exposes His plan for a New Covenant with His people and His relationship to man changes also. In Jeremiah 31: 31-34, God says that through the New Covenant He will write His law on our hearts. Now, we can look back and see that He fulfilled this many centuries later through invading enemy territory and taking the form of a human.  Jesus became the sacrifice for my sins.  His work allows God to write his words in my heart.  How great an expression of love and grace is that?  That is a mighty expression of love and grace.