Home » Bible (Page 2)
Category Archives: Bible
During March Madness several years ago, the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship’s Emerging Scholars Network ran “The Best Christian Book of All Time Tournament.” Beginning with 64 entries, participants voted on a series of paired competitors through elimination rounds. C.S. Lewis’s “Mere Christianity,” a first seed, easily made the Elite Eight, where it handily defeated St. Augustine’s “City of God.” In the Final Four it beatDietrich Bonhoeffer’s “Cost of Discipleship,” but in the finals it was edged out by Augustine’s “Confessions.”
Not bad. Who else could have gone up against Augustine? And Lewis hadn’t even planned for “Mere Christianity” to be a book. During the dark days of World War II, the writer presented four sets of BBC radio talks on basic Christianity. He had these published in several paperbacks. Not until 1952 did he collect them together under the new title.
As we get into spring and closer to summer, don’t limit your goals to getting the yard and your body in shape.
Any fresh time of year is a great time for fresh starts in many areas. So in addition to removing winter pounds and pulling weeds, why not resolve to build up your soul?
Spiritual fitness can be accomplished by working out, believe it or not. In 1 Timothy 4:7–8, Paul tells Timothy to, “Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”
The word translated “train” comes from a word from which we get “gymnasium.” It’s as if Paul told Timothy to gymnasticize himself for godliness. With a heart aimed at godliness you can do spiritual work outs – disciplined repeated acts that will build you up spiritually. One of the best spiritual disciplines is reading the Bible.
CBN News toured the site of the future Museum of the Bible in the nation’s capital, 18 months before its scheduled opening.
Once completed, the 430,000 square foot structure will showcase more than 40,000 items related to the world’s best-selling and most widely read book.
On any given day, the site is crawling with around 300 to 350 construction workers and contractors who are currently busy working on the facade and building interior.
The museum’s home is the same space where Washington’s first refrigerated warehouse was built to preserve food in the 1920s. Nearly a hundred years later, museum workers note, the very same space will be used to preserve the Word of God.
On March 21-22, President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will make a historic visit to Havana, Cuba. The last time a sitting U.S. president visited Cuba, Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig anchored the vaunted “Murderers’ Row” Yankee lineup.
Indeed, Calvin Coolidge has the distinction of being the only president to visit Cuba while in office – in January of 1928 – also a leap year.
Illustrative of the growing reconciliation between the two countries, separated by only 90 miles of Atlantic Ocean, is the less widely known story that the Bible is making a significant comeback in Cuba and finds its place in the ongoing cut and thrust of this détente.
On February 6, just days before the Obama administration made the stunning announcement of their plans to visit Cuba — I traveled with a group of forty leaders to bear witness to a historic event in Santiago de Cuba. I was at the inauguration of the Museum of the Bible exhibit La Biblia: The Way of God in the Way of Man on display in the renovated 500-year old Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción.
Here in the UK we live in what is referred to as post-Christian Europe, a continent where church membership and attendance is going down. Many people still think of themselves as Christian but in Britain in particular, it’s clear that traditional church attendance is down and that a drift into secularisation is for most of us nothing new. You could argue that this in itself should not be a problem.
There are two issues with this: one, it’s not the only story in terms of church attendance; and secondly, the rest of the world hasn’t drifted into secularism and, as we now know, the rest of the world in some form or other is now living here, right now, across Europe and the UK. Migration to Britain from Africa in particular has brought versions of Christianity that are more assertive than the Christianity that most Britons have grown up with. The assertiveness of these different forms of Christianity are often at odds with more liberal beliefs around issues such as same-sex marriage and blasphemy.
Emblematic of the Bible’s declining influence is what Harper Lee penned in her 1960 novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” in which the character Miss Maudie says, “Sometimes the Bible in the hand of one man is worse than a whiskey bottle in the hand of [another].”
Most Christians know enough about the Bible to be dangerous.
The Bible in America is a massive industry ($2.5 billion) yet it is the best seller few read and fewer understand.
The Bible has become a moving target. One can strip it down, twist it, misread it, add to it, supplement it, and even overrule it, and, unfortunately, 95 percent of the congregation will not realize it.
Why? Because Americans no longer know the Bible. The evidence is overpowering that contemporary Christianity is Bible-ish, at best, and at worst, in some cases, Bible-less.
Many people today see science and the Bible as a bitterly divorced couple and feel forced to take sides. It’s a real tragedy because notwithstanding the impression created by extremists on both sides, the two are in fact remarkably harmonious.
As a theoretical physicist and Christian, I have discovered at least ten fundamental truths that are affirmed by both modern science and ancient Scripture.
Does that surprise you? Are you skeptical? If you are, I don’t blame you: all of us are heavily influenced by media that relish playing up people arguing about the age of the earth, the role of evolution in our planet’s natural history, the reliability of science and so forth.
Lost in the noise and fury of these shouting matches are the voices of reason – and faith. Ratio et fides – what I call IQ and SQ (spiritual quotient) – operating peaceably and powerfully together, as they do in my own life.
Last week I wrote a column noting that the Bible is being unconstitutionally banned in the public schools far too often – and even being treated like asbestos, to borrow a line from Christian attorney Jordan Lorence.
A reader responded to that article negatively, raising a common objection that the founders supposedly intended a secular government, one that was free from biblical influence.
He wrote, “Once you see that ideas and our capacity for reason are the most important tools we possess, maybe you will understand that the Bible is like ‘asbestos’ in the public school.”
These types of claims, that the founders intended to banish God from the public square, are made frequently enough that they deserve some further analysis. These claims are ironic, since the founders said our rights come from the Creator.
An evangelical leader believes that the secularization theory – which states that the more educated people become, the less religious they will be – has been debunked as a myth.
Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Evangelical Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina, points to a study by Dr. Rodney Stark at Baylor University that states that religious faith is growing around the world, not declining.
In fact, there’s a rapid spread of both Christianity and Islam in the Second and Third World countries.
“Even in the most industrialized parts of the world, where traditional faith has waned, they’re now turning to belief in goblins or elves or astrology or new-age mysticism,” Land says.
It is long past time that the Bible be taught, discussed, analyzed, explained, and understood in every public school in the United States.
Of course, there is historical precedent for this, and it doesn’t take too much research into American education before you realize that our current practice of purging the Bible from the schoolroom is a modern phenomenon facilitated by an insufferable minority intent on raping the First Amendment in their effort to impose a secular agenda on the nation. It’s time to ignore these perpetually offended radicals whose dogmatic opposition to any government recognition of religion is as irrational as the very fundamentalist zealots burning copies of Huckleberry Finn that they claim to oppose.
If a student graduates from high school without an understanding of basic addition and subtraction, we say the school has failed. Why? Because those are the foundation of understanding mathematics.