Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Why do Christians… (Part 1)

…believe in the Six Day Creation Theory?

In the book of Genesis, when the statement is made, “God created the…” The Hebrew word for “created” that is used literally means “created from nothing” or “Spoken into existence” which understandingly is a hard thing to swallow when it comes to critical thinking. However, when you add in that God is an all powerful God, meaning infinite in power and ability, we have to take away all physical boundaries that we as humans have. In other words, He speaks and it happens or it exists. The other way of thinking on Gods infinite Power, is by understanding that our level of or our ability to understand is limited due to a maximum brain capacity. If for example, you take a business card, and say that the business card represents the maximum level of understanding of the smartest and wisest man in the world; God’s level of understanding in comparison is the size of the universe. So, trying to figure out how God creates something from nothing is like an army ant trying to figure out space travel. This doesn’t mean that a Christian doesn’t use critical thinking. We are inquisitive, we do ask questions like, “Wow, God, how did you do that?!” And though God may not give us the how, through the Bible and Prayer, we can find out the one question that Science (which may someday give us the how) can never answer, “Why?” We believe in the six day creation, not because we've given up on critical thinking; we believe in the six day creation because that is were critical thinking has lead us, to an all powerful God.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Answering Their Questions

It’s interesting to me how we as Christians treat the Non-Christian and their questions. We sometimes forget that some of the people that we are talking to were not raised in the Church. They don’t have a solid foundation in anything spiritual. So, how do we reach them in a manor that is not overwhelming or pushy in it’s approach? Let’s get real folks; we often come off as raving loons that try to cram Christ down their throats with very little thought of the big picture. Then when they tell us to get out of their face, we take offence, brush the dust off or feet and leave, thinking that we’ve planted a seed…well, not so much.

The Non-Christian mind doesn’t think the way you and I do. Matter of fact, most Non-Christians think that you are trying to get them to go to YOUR specific church, which in some cases (not all)…GUILTY AS CHARGED! As much as you are trying to lead people to Christ, if there is an underlying attempt to get them into your Church, you’ll more often then not, loose them and quick. You might ask, “How do you know this?” Because I was one of them; I was an adult Non-Christian that couldn’t stand to have people invite me to THEIR Church. It was always, “Come to our Church and see! Our pastor will…blah, blah, blah.” At that point I was lost. I didn’t need to hear how their pastor was going to answer questions…I needed Christ in my life!

The question you need to ask yourself is; are you leading people to Christ because you care about their salvation, or because you’re trying to fill pews at your local church? If you’re trying to fill pews…you’re on the wrong path. You have to care about their salvation…you have to LOVE people, which is why Paul told us that love was the greatest gift of the Spirit; without love all others are useless. Now, don’t get me wrong, bring a friend to Church to help lead them to Christ is not an over-all bad idea, but you might want to call the pastor first and see what the sermon is going to be about. There’s nothing that turns a non-believer off more then a good deep sermon on the evils of drinking or living a sinful lifestyle. It’s better for them to hear a “Good News” Sermon; how about giving them the salvation story first.

Other things that need to be thought about are the ways in which we approach the non-believer. If I give the non-believer the idea that I want him/her to change their way of thinking RIGHT NOW! They’re lost; they become unreceptive to anything that I’m telling them from that point on. However, I’ve found that simple discussions on topics like, “Here’s why Christians believe what they believe.” Or, “Here’s why Christians try so hard to convert other people to Christianity.” Or, “Here’s why Christians believe their way is the only way.” Tell it in a manor of, “Here’s our point of view,” not, “You should believe what I’m saying because….” This usually brings on a multitude of questions from the non-believer…which is not a bad thing. If they’re asking questions, they want to know who Jesus is…they’re seeking.

When the non-believer starts asking you questions, always start out with, “If I can’t answer a question, I’ll find it and get back to you.” You don’t have to be a PHD to tell someone what Jesus has done in your life. You just have to know where to find the answers.

Tell people why we believe, tell them about what he has done in your life, and most of all tell people that we love them.


Monday, June 2, 2008

The Joy Thief

"However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name." - 1 Peter 4:16 (NIV)

For the last two weeks I’ve been working the swing shift at work (3:00pm – 2:00am). I found out tonight that I was going to have to come in at 6:00am tomorrow morning and be here all day then through my normal swing shift. So in laymen’s terms, I’ll get home tonight at 2:00am, have to be back to work at 6:00am (that’ll be after only 3 hours of sleep) and then work from 6:00am until 2:00am and then finally get to go home. So, on three hours of sleep I’ll have to work a twenty hour work day.

Anyway, I was getting a bit down about the whole ordeal, and I’ll have to admit a bit irritable, when I realized, being angry was not helping my situation one bit. Why should I let my boss’s steal my joy?

Some times things get hard and out of our control. We cannot let these things get us down, because that’s when the devil get’s to us. When we become angry and irritable, we become quick to speak and slow to listen. We become defensive and sometimes down-right mean, and letting our frustrations out on others is bad for the Christian witness.

This can be a hard thing for a lot of Christians to get through, and why is that? Part of the reason, we don’t spend enough time praising God in the good times. If we never praise him in the good times, how will we remember to praise him in the bad? This is a question that we all need to ask ourselves, “Have I thanked God today for loving me and giving me the gift of salvation?” Thank God every day for giving you another day to achieve the purpose that he called each and every one of us to, being his children.