Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Bats and Birds in the Bible


One of the supposed errors in the Bible that atheists are trained to use against Christians is that the Bible wrongly refers to birds as bats.

This is one of those assumed discrepancies that are used to discredit the Bible. If the Bible is wrong about a bat, they argue, then we can reject what it says about homosexuality, hell, Creation, Calvary, or whatever else they are trying to oppose.

Here are the verses in question:

In a list of birds that the Israelites were not allowed to eat, we see, “Nor the heron, nor the lapwing, nor the bat (Leviticus 11:19, Deuteronomy 14:18).”

People rightly point out that the bat is a mammal and not a bird. Therefore, they conclude, that the Bible is wrong.

But please let me point out two things, one obvious, and the other not so obvious.

The obvious: these passages were written in Hebrew 4,000 years ago, translated into Greek a few thousand years later, and translated into English a few hundred years ago. The system we have today of classifying living things—the Linnaean Classification—was first published in 1735, and his breakdown of animal classes to include mammals and birds was published in 1758. There were ten editions to his classification in a 23-year period.

In other words, when the Bible was written in Hebrew, translated into Greek, and being translated into English, there was no distinction between a mammal and a bird; the word mammal didn’t even exist, and Linnaean’s ever-changing book was not exactly settled science.

So to announce today that the Bible was wrong for not using a word that would not exist for a few thousand years is quite foolish.

And now the not so obvious. In addition to the point stated above, the Hebrew word we translate as bird or fowl is owph, which means owner of a wing. A person in 2015 hears the word bird and thinks of a biological classification, but the ancient word in the Bible refers to anything with a wing.

Bats have wings. Therefore, by using the word owph to refer to anything with wings, the Bible was correct.


So when the atheist gives his condescending chuckle about the Bible not understanding science, he is proving to be the one in ignorance.

Monday, June 29, 2015

What to do Now




Some of our Christian brothers and sisters here in South Carolina are wondering what to do now in light of the Supreme Court ruling last Friday.

Christian business owners are worried that they will be forced to do something contrary to their belief system, and many are nervous that new rules will be imposed against the church. While the First Amendment not only guarantees us the freedom of religion, it also says that Congress shall not prohibit the free exercise thereof. That means that we have the right to conduct our daily lives in accordance with God’s Word.

But we have already seen a gay couple threaten to sue a church if they don’t open their doors for their gay wedding. We have seen bakers and photographers put out of business for refusing to violate their conscience (or refusing to allow Congress to prohibit the free exercise of their religion). Instead of finding a wedding chapel that will hold their ceremony, or instead of going to any of the hundreds of other bakers or photographers, these groups are refusing to stop until they destroy their opposition.


Some in the media are paying lip service to protection for churches, but most of us aren’t buying it. We believe it is only a matter of time before they try to chip away at our religious protection. Just hours after the ruling on Friday gay activists were calling to fight those who “hide behind religion.” That is why Texas Governor Greg Abbott just signed the Pastor Protection Act, guaranteeing that no pastors will ever be forced to perform any wedding against their will, and ensuring that their facilities will not be used for any purpose other than established church policy.  

It is time that we become proactive and let our Congress hear our voices. They are paid to represent our interests, and if this is important to you, then spend a few minutes writing a letter.

Here is a sample letter to send to your representatives:

Dear ________________________,

I am writing to you today with a very heavy heart. Friday, June 26th, was a very dark day for America. The Supreme Court Justices took it upon themselves to change the law of our Lord, the God upon whom this Nation was founded, when they made same sex marriage legal.

The reason for my letter is to ask you to please pass a law protecting our pastors and business people of South Carolina, guaranteeing them of their free exercise of religion, to not have to violate their deeply held religious beliefs. We still have some pastors who preach the Word of God as it was written. Please protect them before it is too late (please see: “Pastor Protection Act in Texas”).

I thank you in advance for your quick attention on this matter, and thank you for all that you do for our great State.

Sincerely,
__________________________ 


Here is a list of some of our elected officials. If you don’t live in South Carolina, you can go here and here to find your legislators.


Representative Mick Mulvaney
2419 Rayburn HOB
Washington, D.C. 20515

Senator Lindsey Graham
290 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

Senator Tim Scott
520 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

Senator Harvey S. Peeler, Jr.
213 Gressette Bldg.
Columbia, SC 29201

Representative Mike Anthony
432C Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC 29201

The Honorable Nikki R. Haley

Office of the Governor


1205 Pendleton Street
Columbia, SC 29201

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Use it Right (Google Image Series)



One might also say, "If you ignore the New Testament's clear teaching that homosexuality is wrong, you're using it wrong."

And in reference to the verse about love, true love warns a person of the error of their ways. What happened to loving a person enough to care about the consequences of their wrong choices? It does more harm to let disobedience go unchecked in the name of love.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Charleston vs. Ferguson



We all know about the protests that have taken place in cities like Ferguson and Baltimore in recent months due to the deaths of Mike Brown and Freddie Gray. But after an evil young man in South Carolina murdered nine people in Charleston last week, the response has been the exact opposite of that of recent events.

Charleston had all the ingredients to lead to another Ferguson, but that hasn’t been the case.

Charleston has had its demonstrations: candle lightings, prayer vigils, marches, laying flowers, etc. But there has been no violence, no buildings burned down, no stolen cars, no looting, and no assaulting of police officers—all things done in Ferguson and Baltimore.

What has made the difference? Leadership is certainly a factor. Governor Nikki Haley and Senator Tim Scott are great people showing strong leadership. But the response of the victims’ families in Charleston has been most noteworthy. When given the opportunity to address their loved ones’ killer, the mourners in Charleston said things like, “I forgive you,” and “I’m praying for you.” They let him know that, even though they are upset, their Christian faith calls them to love their enemies and pray for those who persecute them.

 Me with the great Senator Tim Scott

Compare that to the reaction in the others cities. When the evidence against Officer Darren Wilson did not lead to an indictment, the step-father of Mike Brown grabbed a microphone and yelled, “Burn this b**** down!” And that’s exactly what the demonstrators did.

I don’t know anything about that step-father; I’m not saying he doesn’t believe in Jesus or that he is a bad person. He was a man going through the agony of losing a son.

But those in Charleston do profess faith in Christ, and their actions certainly backed up their faith claims. So this is not an anti-anything post, or a chance to brag on my state. It is simply pointing out the difference that Jesus can make in even the most tragic of situations.

When the entire country was bracing for another round of protests, we instead were inspired by the Christian love and sympathy extended to a young man who deserved neither.

And that is the message of Jesus: none of us deserves His love and forgiveness, but He offers it to anyone who desires it.


When someone asks what difference Jesus can make in a person’s life, He can take them from “Burn this city down” to “I forgive you.”  

This video shows the love and forgiveness shown in Charleston.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Pro-Abortionists Hate Science


One of the classic broad misrepresentations used against Christianity is that we hate science. By hating science they mean we reject their pseudo-science called Darwinian evolution. 

Although we could easily counter that they hate science for neglecting the scientific method or embracing a belief system in direct opposition to Thermodynamics, a much better response is to point out the most glaring hatred of science espoused by atheists and liberals alike.

These champions of science hurriedly change their tune when it comes to the unborn. Ultrasound technology, embryology, neonatology, and DNA studies continue to confirm that life begins inside the womb, most likely at conception. 

But liberals are quick to brush this science to the side and remain beholden to their belief system--the same thing they accuse Christians of doing. They love abortion because it is a billion dollar industry, so they repeat their anti-science claims of

"Its just a blob of cells." 
"It doesn't look like a human."   

In reality we know (through science) that each fertilized egg is genetically complete, and has its own unique DNA that no other person will ever have. This is far from the dime-a-dozen glob of tissue mantra. 

Someone who loves science should want to celebrate what science has given us and share it with all who will listen. So why are they up in arms that Texas passed a law requiring women to have to actually look at an ultrasound image before aborting her child? Its science! 

The problem is they don't like what the science proves. They would rather trick you into mutilating your baby (for $2,000) then let you see their dirty little secret on the ultrasound film. 

In books like Unplanned and Won by Love, Abby Johnson and Norma "Jane Roe" McCorvey recount their experiences working in clinics in which lying to the patients was routine. When the young mother would ask what her baby looked like, they were told the "fetus" was just a clump of cells that didn't resemble anything human. 

(4D ultrasound: Clump of cells not acting very human)

So the next time you are accused of hating science, point out how much you love embryology, and dare that person to type 4D ultrasound into Google images. We'll see who really hates science. 


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Constitution (Google Image Series)



That's correct, the Constitution does not use those words.

But the preamble to the Declaration of Independence states, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights…"

These truths (that we were created by a Higher Power, not evolved by random chance) are self-evident. That means that this was the commonly-accepted belief (and is still common sense today). When something is commonly believed by the vast majority, the Constitution would not need to contain those words.

This is like saying that the menu at McDonald's never uses the words hungry or thirsty. That is presupposed before someone goes to a restaurant.

Furthermore, the First Amendment to the Constitution states, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."The Constitution was written with an understanding that God is the Creator, and Congress should never butt in and prohibit the daily living out of that belief.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Better than Broken


The popular Christian group Casting Crowns has recently released a song titled Broken Together. I really like the song, but at the same time it leaves me a little disappointed.

I am a big Casting Crowns fan, although they do have a tendency to come across as pretty negative from time to time. Broken Together is a beautiful song, both vocally and musically. The song is written to husbands and wives who entered marriage expecting a fairy tale, only to find out that their partner isn’t as perfect as the one in the chick flick.

The chorus says, “Maybe you and I were never meant to be complete.
Could we just be broken together?
If you could bring your shattered dreams and I’ll bring mine
Could healing still be spoken and save us?
The only way to last forever is broken together.”

I agree with the song’s premise that marriage isn’t always a fairy tale because it unites two imperfect people, so imperfection remains the result. We need to be honest about our own shortcomings and not just focus on our spouse.

I realize that embracing brokenness has become one of the battle cries of the emerging church—“We are all just beautiful broken messes!” But what is really beautiful is marriage itself, the God-ordained joining of two people in holy matrimony, symbolic of the covenant between Yahweh and mankind.

The problem of settling for broken together (the only way to last forever?) and celebrating brokenness in general is just that—it is settling. Jesus didn’t die on the cross so that we could embrace brokenness, but new, abundant life in Him (John 10:10). If anything is broken, it is the chains of sin and the old way of life that died at our conversion.

I will not boast in brokenness, but in being a blood-bought, set apart saint viewed as righteous in the eyes of my Father. This is not bragging in myself, but only in the work of Christ, who exchanged my sin (brokenness) for His righteousness (1 Corinthians 1:30-31).

Paul felt the same way. Writing to the Corinthian Christians who had once practiced the vilest of immorality, the Apostle said:

“Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

Paul didn’t celebrate their brokenness and say, “God understands that no one is perfect. You are all just broken people, so do your best, be broken together, and you can still go to heaven.”

Paul said they were washed, sanctified, and redeemed. Doesn’t that sound better than broken? I can hear the critics screaming about self-righteousness, but Paul didn’t give them the credit; the change was made by “the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” To Him be the glory!

We serve a God who opened the eyes of the blind, healed the sick, raised the dead, and has the power to forgive sins. Can’t He do better than broken?


The only was to last forever is being together, united with Christ in salvation. That is certainly better than broken.