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Posted by on in Apologetics
Sail Ship
Was Jesus a Historical Person? An open letter to Stephen Van Eck Introduction There is a myth about a man named Francis Hester, who in 1650, supposedly took a trip from Southwart, England and landed in New Kent County, Virginia. The problem with this man is we really have no reliable historical evidence for his existence. Also, there are so many similar stories from that time period that one might conclude that his life is a complete fabrication. At most there are only two pieces of evidence for his existence. One is a religious document, a baptismal record, and the other a ship’s manifest listing him as a passenger. Since the baptismal record is a religious document, as good naturalists, we must reject it out of hand. As for the ship’s manifest, upon careful examination, the name on the manifest is Francis Hestor, not Francis Hester. Obviously this is a completely...

Posted by on in Religion
  Was Jefferson a Christian, Atheist, or Deist? Email from a student: Sorry to bother you with yet another article, but I have come across several over the last few days that I think are germane to things that have been discussed in your Tuesday night class. I take everything with a grain of salt these days and am admittedly not a Glenn Beck groupie. However, I do believe that much of his information regarding the Founding Fathers has been fairly accurate. But to cut to the chase ... I have heard for years the story about Thomas Jefferson cutting up his Bible to accommodate his own beliefs and I heard you again mention it in class the other night. The following article seems to shed new light (at least for me) on that story: I'd like to hear your take on this. Thanks, My return email: For a...

Posted by on in Christianity
(RePost) Get baptized by the craziest guy in town. Say and do things that are guaranteed to make religious people want to kill you. Repeat again, and again, and again, and again, and again - don't stop unless forced. Do amazing things for people and ask them to not tell anyone. Hang out with the most despised, marginalized, looked down upon, and shunned people you can find. When possible, forgive and restore people, even if they betrayed you. Live in a way that provokes gossip. Win the most grace competition. Keep the party going. Serve people (note: nose plugs may be required). If you're sad cry. Empower people to do the extraordinary. Act like a rock star in a hotel temple. Radically simplify theology. Break human-made religious laws. Repeat consistently. Prioritize the most important over the important. Let women with "questionable" backgrounds pay your bills. ...

Posted by on in Christianity
Potomac River
Is Jesus peripheral to your life or does He permeate your life? I am using these words advisedly, because I want to be precise in what I think is an important truth. What is your goal in life? Think about it for a bit. Is your goal to get a good job, finish school, or simply have fun? Or do you seek to do God’s will in every aspect of your life? Do you only go to Church once or twice a year? What about your prayer life? Do you pray for others or yourself? Is Christ relevant in your life? In other words, does the fact that you have a relationship with Christ affect your life in any way? Think about what you spend your time on each day. How much time do you spend on a hobby, on sports, on TV, on video games, or on Facebook? Now...

Posted by on in Gender and Sexuality
A Modern Retelling of John 8:1-11 This is simply a modern retelling of John 8:1-11 about the woman caught in adultery.  I think this speaks for itself. A Man Caught in Homosexuality Jesus returned to the City, but early the next morning he was back again at Church. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them.  As he was speaking, the religious teachers and leaders brought a man who had been caught in the act of sodomy. They put him in front of the crowd. “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this man was caught in the act of sodomy. The Bible says this sin is punishable by death. What do you say?” They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up...

Posted by on in Book Reviews
Around Seattle
Book Review: Finding God in Ancient China by Chan Kei Thong with Charlene L. Fu “Finding God in Ancient China: How the Ancient Chinese Worshiped the God of the Bible,” by Chan Kei Thong with Charlene L. Fu, caught my eye after I had seen some interesting websites that made a connection between the Genesis flood account and Chines pictographic characters (logograms). Thesis The thesis of the book is, “we will show that there is sufficient light peeking through the windows of general revelation in Chinese history, records, literature, and practices to convince one to take the next step, into the sunlight of God’s special revelation.”(40) What this book is not saying This book is not making the claim that there is more than one way to God. The claim is that the ancient Chinese had a rudimentary knowledge of the one true God that would have come from the...

Posted by on in Gender and Sexuality
Point-Counterpoint: Gay Marriage If you know me, you know I like to hear all sides of a debate. I think it is wise to gather as much data as possible and review all the evidence for and against any issue. That way you can then make an educated assessment and decision. Making decision based on your emotions is extremely dangerous. I like to take some time to think through a position and don’t rush to judgment. I don’t get fall for slick campaign rhetoric or user car salesmen tactics. I found one of these videos very emotionally compelling and the other more logically compelling. The first video is of Zach Wahls, a 19-year-old University of Iowa student spoke about the strength of his family during a public forum on House Joint Resolution 6 in the Iowa House of Representatives. The second video is a response from Brett Kunkle of Stand to...

Posted by on in Movie Reviews
Day in Seattle
Chronicle (the Movie) I think there is much more to this movie than meets the eye. Spoiler Alert: Don’t read if you want to see the movie. Storyline: Three high school friends gain telekinetic powers after making an incredible discovery of a strange object in a cave. Soon, though, they find their lives spinning out of control and their bond tested as one of them embraces his darker side. What would happen if you gave a group of teenagers extremely strong telekinetic powers? It depends on the teenagers. In this movie you have three very different teenagers brought together by accidently gaining telekinetic powers from an unknown source. They bond together as they learn what they can do with their powers. Steve is running for class president and is the most popular kid in school. Andrew is an unpopular misfit with a dying mother and alcoholic abusive father. Matt fits...
hi God
John Smulo, a friend of mine, gave me a copy of a recently released book titled, “The Cross Is Not Enough: Living as Witnesses to the Resurrection” written by his friends Ross Clifford and Philip Johnson. I have to admit that the title caught my attention, and I started reading it that day. I am not finished with the book yet, but it is so jam-packed with information that I had to write down some of my thoughts before I forgot them. Premise of the book The book starts with the following quote: “If the Church had contemplated the Empty Tomb as much as the Cross of its Lord, its life would have been more exhilarating and its contribution to the world more positive than has been the case.” – George Beasley-Murray My critical-thinking mind quickly asked the question “Is this true and if so, what are the implications?” Here...

Posted by on in Philosophy
New Orleans
I remember a few years back when a friend at work would passionately support the idea that there was a conspiracy behind the events of September 11. Even though I thought he was off-his-rocker, we had a number of impassioned conversations about the subject. The flaw I saw in his logic was the number of people needed to pull off such a stunt. It seemed to me at the time, and still does, that given the number of people needed to ‘cover-up’ this event, it is highly unlikely. I mean there was talk that workers came into the building and weakened the structure before the event and that the true planes were diverted to another airport and that the people are alive and living in secrecy. I wish someone would come up with a formula or theorem for calculating the probability of a given conspiracy theory that takes into account...


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