Archive for September, 2006

How Not to Do Evangelism

Traced back to the Sunday Papers.

I guess it was inevitable that someone would come up with a this as a joke.  I’d buy some, but I’m thinking most people aren’t looking at my butt, except to laugh.

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A visit to the Acts 29 Network caused me to pause and ponder.  And that is about how we view ourselves.  In responding to what they believe they say:

“The short answer is that we are first Christians, second Evangelicals, third Missional, and fourth Reformed. The more lengthy answer is included below and intentionally omits some finer points of doctrine and secondary issues as we allow the elders in our local churches to operate according to their convictions on these matters. ”

They start with the broadest category, and then narrow it down.  They begin with the common ground.  They are Christians.  I like how they put the emphasis on the Body rather than what part of the Body they are. 

Then they begin to progressively distinguish themselves from other groups within the Church.They are evangelical.  This is a broad subgroup among Christians.  It is often misunderstood, but they explain what they mean in terms of the historic, doctrines they evangelicals have held (authority of Scripture, the Trinity, deity of Jesus…).  This sets them apart from mainline and other liberal expressions of Christianity (which we would say deviate from orthodoxy).


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Great Moments in Dadhood

Yesterday was a day of great joy.  Not only did the CavDaughter put her own sock on for the first time (we’ll see how long it takes to repeat that feat) she uttered one of the most precious words to my ears- baseball.  Sorry Jollyblogger, but this here is my little girl and baseball is a pretty important word for her to know.  Her rapidly expanding vocabulary already includes ‘amen’ when we are done praying.

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The Sad Story of TO

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens reportedly attempted suicide yesterday.  He overdosed on painkillers as he recuperates from surgery on his broken finger.

While a tremendous athlete, TO comes across as a horrible human being.  I’ve never met him, so all I know is from what I see and hear on TV or the radio/magazines.  He is a man who burns bridges.  He made the 49er and Eagles organizations so sick of him and his antics that they got rid of him.  The Eagles got nothing in return too.  All of this in his greedy crusade to get more money (and the respect he thinks it signifies).  I’m not sure this guy has any friends. 

What put him over the edge?  I mean, he’s got the stinkin’ money.  Still not happy!  Perhaps while recuperating none of his teammates called. Perhaps only his mom and agent called.  That would be depressing- to realize that getting what you wanted cost you everything you need.  It is a sad story- hopefully it will have a great ending.  Perhaps he’ll realize that the God he says he worships is more concerned with his heart than his checkbook.

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When Sports Hurt

The first lesson in track and field should be to always keep your eye on the flying objects- especially javelins!

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Jesus Redux

Apparently Jesus returned, and I did not know it.  An evangelist in S. Florida calls himself “The Man Christ Jesus” who has returned without relationship to sin.  His followers often give him tons of money, including estates worth up to a million dollars.  “Jesus” is living large.  There are 30 “study centers” in the US, and centers in over 20 countries.  It is too strange to be believed.  Here is the Today Day Show piece on the him and the group.  There is also a Fox News piece on the group including an interview with a defender of “Jesus”.  And there is a promo piece put out by the group, translated into English.  This organization, Growing in Grace, has all the signs of a cult.  People are cut off from their families (even ‘Jesus’), an authoritarian leader, a unique perspective on the Bible etc.

What does he teach?

1. Sin no longer exists (Hebrews 9:26).

2. The Devil was destroyed 2,000 years ago (Hebrews 2:14).

3. He is the last manifestation of God in flesh (sounds like modalism).

4. He has established the Government of God on earth.

5. Every religion will end, and their leaders are corrupt, teaching expired doctrine.

Just so you don’t forget: “The man Christ Jesus, Dr. Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda, is coming to the USA!  The King of kings and Lord of lords has arrived in America!”

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Unexpected Blessing: Living the Counterculture Reality of the Beatitudes by Cameron Lee is a worthy read on the subject.  He picks up the idea that we are living in an upside-down world.  The kingdom is not like the world, and so the values of the kingdom are quite contrary to the world. 

Lee does a good job of fleshing that out.  In the process, you will probably be challenged, and encouraged.  To quote John Piper, “the flesh turns the law into a ladder.”  We are tempted to turn the Beatitudes into a law to gaining the kingdom.  But they are in a context of grace- they are the marks of those who have repented and believed because the kingdom had drawn near in Jesus.  So we do not gain the kingdom by them, but their presence indicates that we truly are citizens of the kingdom.

As citizens of the kingdom, we will not be satisfied by the putrid and petty offerings of this substitute & shadowy kingdom.

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