Archive for the ‘worldviews’ Category

 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?   For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.   ~Psalms 8:4-5

To a Christian, one of the most valuable things in this world is human life.  This is because we know that each and every individual is fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God, regardless of their physical appearance or genetic makeup.  As such, each and every person is deserving of human dignity and love.  However, as we see a moral and spiritual decline in our country (and in the world, for that matter) due to a rejection of God and His Word, we also see a corresponding diminishing of the perceived value of human life in society.  Case in point: While watching a recent news broadcast, my wife was telling me that she was sickened and  horrified to learn that a hospital in the UK was found to be burning the aborted fetuses of  unborn babies right along with the rest of the hospital’s trash as a new ‘green’ way of heating their building.  That’s right, these innocent little children were first murdered and then their lifeless bodies were simply tossed into the trash pile and incinerated, with absolutely no regard whatsoever.  How utterly despicable to think that the remains of these dear children were used as the means of providing warmth to the very hands that had so coldly ended their lives. 

Once again, we see that when the Absolute Authority of the Bible is discarded and replaced with atheistic and evolutionary notions, there remains no ultimate reason to value human life above that of any other ‘evolved’ mass of cells.  In fact,

if we are all nothing more than rearranged bags of molecules, why should anyone care what happens to someone else?  We wouldn’t get bent out of shape over a dead cancer cell or a housefly we squashed with our flyswatter, after all. 

Why not do what we want to one another and even rearrange each other a little more if we feel like it (especially if it benefits us and we can get away with it)?  We wouldn’t put a lion in prison for killing a zebra or for maiming a gazelle, would we?  Besides, didn’t murderers, thieves, and terrorists evolve too? Why should they be punished for acting out the thoughts produced by the random chemical reactions in their evolved brains, if that’s what their DNA tells them to do?

Think about it: if one person’s brain fizz produces a standard that tells them that murder is OK and someone else’s brain fizzes a standard which says that protecting life is what they should be doing, then ultimately, what is the difference if both people are eventually just going to die anyway without consequence? Followed to its logical (read: illogical) conclusion, this corrupt line of reasoning tells us that it truly does not matter if one lives their life like Mother Theresa or if they live like Adolph Hitler, as both of them are now on equal footing—dead forever. 

Like it or not, this is the result when we abandon the absolutes of the Christian worldview for the subjective standards of atheism, which postulates an accidental, random-chance, evolving universe.   Apart from an absolute law giver,  there can be no moral absolutes–only subjective personal preferences with regards to behavior.  As such, ANYONE is then free to stipulate their own personal moral standards (including rapists, murderers, thieves, and child molesters), and there is no way to resolve the conflict, as one personal standard is just as valid as another.  As such, ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ become meaningless terms, as differing personal opinions are not ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, they’re just…..well….’different’.  In an atheistic, evolutionary universe, that’s the most one could ever say about anybody else’s behavioral standards (no matter how personally offensive they may be).

Fortunately, we do not live in such a universe.  We live in God’s universe where we all know that things like rape, murder, and stealing are absolutely wrong, since He has ‘hardwired’ His moral law into each of us and has given us a conscience to affirm that He has done so.  This is an inescapable reality, as even the most diehard criminal locks his own doors at night to keep someone else from perpetrating upon him the very acts that he does to others, because he knows in his heart of hearts that his deeds are absolutely morally wrong, and not just a matter of personal preference.  Likewise, the staunchest professing atheist not only expects to be treated with a certain level of reasonableness, dignity, and respect by his fellow human beings–he demands it!  In doing so, he undermines his professed atheism and reveals plainly that, deep within, he knows that God exists as Creator and that he also has inherent value, being made in His image.  In summary, it has been rightly observed that:

Humanism or atheism is a wonderful philosophy of life as long as you are big, strong, and between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five. But watch out if you are in a lifeboat and there are others who are younger, bigger, or smarter.    ~William Murray

 

 

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John 10:10

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: …

Consider the words of Jesus in this passage of Scripture and their relevence to the destruction of humanity taking place all around us.  The Chief of all thieves is none other than satan himself, and it his supreme desire to steal, kill, and to destroy each and every human being made in the image of God.  In fact, through the pervasive deception of evolution theory, secular humanism, and atheism, untold multitudes of people have been duped into believing that they are nothing but merely  evolved masses of molecules with no ultimate value or real purpose in this universe.  According to this worldview, everything–their families, their work, and even their own existence–is all utterly pointless in the end.  If we consider the possible ramifications of such a hopeless view of one’s existence and the world in general, it’s plain to see the damaging effects of such a position, since people tend to behave according to their beliefs.  For instance, with no ultimate reason to value human life, why SHOULD anyone care what happens to another person, in a purely evolutionary universe?  After all, if people are just rearranged assemblages of atoms, what does it ultimately matter if they get rearranged a little more by someone else in this ‘dog eat dog’ world?  In fact, according to this misguided and twisted line of reasoning, there is no ultimate reason why extermination (of one’s self or others) SHOULDN’T be the primary means of dealing with any conflict (internal or external) in the world.

Remember, according to evolution theory, defects and weaknesses in the gene pool must be eliminated in order for the continued advancement of higher life forms to occur.  By that logic, someone suffering from, say, depression due to a chemical imbalance in their brain or some other ‘abnormality’ is doing everyone else a favor in eliminating themselves or being eliminated by someone else (along with their defective genes), sooner rather than later.  This is the type of warped and horrendously destructive reasoning that abandoning God and His Word as one’s ultimate Authority inevitably makes a person vulnerable to (Hitler, anyone?)

Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way.  Jesus finishes the Scripture above by providing mankind with a blessed hope and refuge from satanic deception when he says in contrast:

“I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly”. 

Part of that abundant life in Christ is the blessed assurance that comes from acknowledging the truth of God’s Word which tells us that each human life is of the utmost value and deserving of the highest esteem, since each person bears the image of the God who created them and are the object of His supreme love, as manifested by the willing sacrifice of Jesus Christ upon the cross.  While it’s too late for those who have gone to their graves under satanic deception to undo what’s been done, you don’t have to be deceived and robbed of your intrinsic value like they were—-simply repent and submit to Jesus Christ today as both Lord and Savior.  God will save you and then transform you by the renewing of your mind unto the Truth (Romans 12:2)—–you’ve got His Word on that!  Please go to http://www.needgod.com and take the test.

 

 

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 2]:

Greetings Soldier,

I see that you took to heart the information in our last correspondence. I commend you for your courage in challenging your uncle’s philosophy and attempting to enlighten him as to the difference between blind and justified faith. Although his attitude was less than receptive, this is a great start for future discussions with him. Remember, the idea is not necessarily to have him admit defeat of his arguments all at once, but to begin to get him to think critically and honestly about his own position of atheism. For instance, consider where his faith really lies when it is all said and done—-it is in the unobserved (and unobservable) ‘phenomenon’ of evolution. Not only has he never seen one kind or species of animal becoming another kind or species over millions/billions of years, he has to assume at the present that those things which allegedly ‘evolved’ into what we see now originally came from nothing, which somehow turned into something, which then somehow blew up and became everything.

A great victory is won whenever the unbeliever is made to consider the ultimate consequences of their professed beliefs, as the God-sanctioned rational aspect of their nature will not allow them to be at peace once made aware that they are holding to such irreconcilable, contradictory thoughts about the world and reality in general. The subsequent struggle that arises within them is most certainly in our favor and, more often than not, signifies the beginnings of spiritual life awakening within the unbeliever (remember, darkness is never so restless as when the light is present). May the Lord use you and your words as the means to accomplish that blessed result. Here to serve,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 3]:

Greetings Soldier,

Of course it is no bother to further elaborate on the references to natural and special revelation as mentioned in my first correspondence to you. I am glad that you are interested in learning more about the ways that God has revealed Himself to humankind and I always enjoy talking in detail about them. First, there is natural revelation. This is God’s revelation of Himself through His creation. Consider the universe and all that it contains–the stars, the moon, the sun, planets, oceans, trees, grass, people, clouds, rain, insects, animals, etc. These are all but a reflection of God’s awesome power and His unlimited creative genius. Indeed, that which is made declares the presence of the Maker and the laws that govern His Creation serve as irrefutable proof of His Sovereignty as the Supreme ruler of Heaven and Earth. In fact, it bears repeating that Romans 1:18-20 states that God’s existence is so plainly confirmed via His creation that no one has an excuse for denying Him whatsoever. How’s that for irrefutable, eyewitness testimony!

Though Creation is more than sufficient proof of God’s existence, God hasn’t stopped there. He has also revealed Himself to mankind via special (or, as some like to call it, supernatural) revelation. This includes His revelation of Himself through the Bible, His Spirit, and through Jesus Christ. It is through these means that we find the deeper wellspring of wisdom and insight into who God is (His character and nature), what He expects of mankind with regards to their thinking, behavior, and salvation (as those being made in His image and subject to His Ultimate Authority), and His plan to ultimately restore all things to a state of eternal perfection, order, and peace through His only begotten Son. Through the kindness of the Father in revealing the Truth of Himself to man, natural and special revelation form the basis for all knowledge and truth and, therefore, provide sound testimony of the inescapable reality of a living God who upholds and sustains all things by the power of His might. May this knowledge make you bold in your witness and fill you with all confidence and Holy assurance in the God that has called you according to his Divine purpose. Here to serve,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 5: The Bible]

Greetings Soldier,

I have much to say in response to your second question which involves the special revelation found in the Bible. As you have rightly stated, it is truly astounding to know that the God of heaven and earth has chosen to reveal Himself to mankind such that they can know for certain who He is via inspired text. Without a doubt, the Bible is unlike any other book ever written and it is important for you to not only understand THAT it is different, but also WHY it is different. As such, here are some important truths to keep in mind regarding God’s great Book and the inspired truths within it.

First of all, the Bible is unique among other so-called ‘holy books’, as it alone meets the criteria of a true objective Revelation in that it can be freely examined by all, corresponds with reality, makes sense of the necessary preconditions of human intelligibility (such as knowledge, truth, logic, morality, and the uniformity of nature), and is internally consistent (i.e. doesn’t contradict itself).  The very fact that God used fallible people to produce an infallible work is, itself, a feat worthy of awe, especially considering the fact that the Bible was written over a period of about 1,500 years, by approximately 40 different authors, yet their writings agree in perfect harmony!  To put into perspective just how miraculous this is, consider the following story:

One Friday night, four teenagers went out for a ride around their town.  They had so much fun that they lost track of time and accidentally kept one of the teens out past his curfew.  Afraid that he would get in trouble, they decided that they would simply tell the boy’s dad that they had had a flat tire and that was the reason why they were late getting him home; problem solved!  Thick as thieves, they all went in to face the boy’s father together as the teen meticulously recited the concocted story to his dad.  When asked if it was true, the other three enthusiastically affirmed that it was.  “Well,” said the dad, “I guess that settles it, then.”  The boys all breathed a sigh of relief.  “One more thing, though,” they heard the dad say as he handed each of them a pen and a scrap of paper, “I want each of you to write down WHICH tire was flat.”

Now, what do you suppose the odds are that all four boys will write down the exact same thing, on the very first try (without any prior discussion of this detail)?  Yet, that’s exactly what we find with the Bible:  God got it right the first time!  He has delivered His message completely intact via those forty or so inspired individuals (many of whom never met or spoke to one another) who lived at different times in history, resided in different geographical regions, and were from varying social and economic backgrounds.  In fact, from Genesis to Revelation, it’s as if this entire book was written by the hand of the same author; because ultimately it was—God’s!
In addition, we find that the Bible is also historically, scientifically, and prophetically accurate, which is exactly what one would expect from an omniscient, omnipotent God.  Let’s elaborate:

Historically Accurate:  The Bible provides factual, verifiable historical records of real people, places, and events.  Because of its precise and detailed accounts, it is relied upon more than any other book in antiquity to aid in locating artifacts and relics from ancient civilizations.  Even among secular archeologists, the general consensus is that if the Bible says something is at a particular location, it’s there.  This is something that time has only served to confirm again and again as new archeological finds constantly serve to validate the truth of the Bible.

Scientifically Accurate:  As we would expect, the Bible is not only scientifically accurate, it also contains many scientific facts that were revealed by God long before they were ever discovered by man.  Here are a few:

~At a time when most people (including the scientific community of the day) were convinced that the earth was flat, the Bible declares, in Isaiah 40:22, that God sits upon the ‘circle (sphere) of the earth’ about 3,000 years BEFORE Christopher Columbus made his famous voyage around the world.

~Thousands of years before NASA successfully sent man into orbit around your planet, the Bible alludes to the earth’s free float in outer space, with no visible means of support.  In Job 26:7 we are told that God hangs the earth on NOTHING.

~Long before the modern telescope gave man true insight to the vastness of the universe, the Bible reveals in Genesis 15:5 and Hebrews 11:12 that the stars of the heavens are innumerable, at a time when only about 1,100 stars could be seen with the naked human eye.

~Inspired by the phrase ‘paths of the seas’ in Psalm 8:8, famous oceanographer, Matthew Maury, began to study old ships’ logs.  From his studies, he compiled data of ocean-wind and sea currents and was later able to develop this data into charts of the ocean currents—the ‘paths’ of the seas—which greatly aided the science of marine navigation.

~Only in recent times has washing one’s hands in running water and the quarantine of the sick become a standard practice for those in the medical profession.  Untold lives could have been saved over the years had people only read their Bibles, as these practices are specifically advocated all the way back in Leviticus.

Prophetically Accurate:  Not surprisingly, one of the ways in which God demonstrates the authenticity of His Word is through the accurate foretelling of future events.  Since only God knows the future, fulfilled prophecy is powerful proof of Divine Inspiration.  However, we should also remember God’s standard of accuracy for prophecy is 100%.  Anything less and you can be assured that what was spoken did not come from God, and that the person who made the prediction is a false prophet.   The Bible contains some 2,500 prophecies, about 2000 of which already have been fulfilled to the letter with no errors, while the remaining 500 or so reach into the future and may be seen unfolding as days go by.  Here are but a few of the fulfilled prophecies found in the Bible:

~Sometime before 500 B.C. the prophet Daniel proclaimed that Israel’s long-awaited Messiah would begin his public ministry 483 years after the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem (Daniel 9:25-26). He further predicted that the Messiah would be “cut off,” killed, and that this event would take place prior to a second destruction of Jerusalem. Abundant documentation shows that these prophecies were perfectly fulfilled in the life (and crucifixion) of Jesus Christ

~In approximately 700 B.C. the prophet Micah named the tiny village of Bethlehem as the birthplace of Israel’s Messiah (Micah 5:2). The fulfillment of this prophecy in the birth of Christ is one of the most widely known and widely celebrated facts in history.

~In the fifth century B.C. a prophet named Zechariah declared that the Messiah would be betrayed for the price of a slave—thirty pieces of silver, according to Jewish law-and also that this money would be used to buy a burial ground for Jerusalem’s poor foreigners (Zechariah 11:12-13). Bible writers and secular historians both record thirty pieces of silver as the sum paid to Judas Iscariot for betraying Jesus, and they indicate that the money went to purchase a “potter’s field,” used—just as predicted—for the burial of poor foreigners (Matthew 27:3-10).

~Some 400 years before crucifixion was invented, both Israel’s King David and the prophet Zechariah described the Messiah’s death in words that perfectly depict that mode of execution. Further, they said that the body would be pierced and that none of the bones would be broken, contrary to customary procedure in cases of crucifixion (Psalm 22 and 34:20; Zechariah 12:10).

Countless other examples of detailed, fulfilled Biblical prophecies could be provided here, including those pertaining to the virgin birth of Jesus Christ, His predicted lineage from the tribe of Judah as a descendant of David, and other specific details of the events surrounding His death, burial, and resurrection from the dead. By contrast, the Muslim Koran contains NO fulfilled prophecies and the Book of Mormon even contains false prophecies (such as citing Jerusalem as the birth place of Jesus instead of Bethlehem, along with other contradictory claims and accounts).   As the Word of God, the Bible stands alone as the only source of Divine Truth in the universe.  It is, therefore, no surprise that it has been the object of ongoing satanic attack over the years to attempt to destroy and discredit it.  However, those who have voiced even the most vehement opposition to the Bible in ages past are now lying silent in their graves, while the irrefutable truth of God’s Word still speaks and its mighty power lives on.  In fact, John Clifford’s poem, ‘The Anvil of God’s Word’, is a fitting tribute to that fact:

“Last eve I paused beside the blacksmith’s door, And heard the anvil ring the vesper chime;

Then looking in, I saw upon the floor, Old hammers, worn with beating years of time.

“‘How many anvils have you had,’ said I, ‘To wear and batter all these hammers so?’

‘Just one,’ said he, and then with twinkling eye, ‘The anvil wears the hammers out, you know.’

“And so, I thought, the Anvil of God’s Word For ages skeptic blows have beat upon;
Yet, though the noise of falling blows was heard, The Anvil is unharmed, the hammers gone.”

In closing, I leave you with the inspired (and fitting) words of the Apostle Peter: “But the word of the Lord endureth for ever…” 1 Peter 1:25.  Here to serve,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 6]:

Greetings Soldier,

You do not have to apologize for the feeling of disappointment you are feeling now. After all, a sense of frustration is only natural when good evidence is given to support your case, but then dismissed out of hand due to the hostile bias of the one examining the evidence. It is very important to understand what is going on here with your brother and it is time that you were granted insight into the nature of ‘presuppositions’ and the effect they have on one’s reasoning and conclusions about the world around them. You see, everyone has a worldview—a view of the world founded upon certain tightly held beliefs that are assumed to be true and through which they interpret all of their observations and experiences (including any and all evidence presented to them for consideration). Because of this, it is impossible to convince someone of something they do not wish to be convinced of since they will interpret any evidence via the lens of those tightly held, most foundational assumptions that are already present. Confused yet? Perhaps this illustration might help:

Once upon a time, a young man believed he was dead. For months, his friends and family tried desperately to convince him that this was not the case, but to no avail. Finally, at their wits end, they decided to take him to see the family doctor in hopes that he could offer some sort of medical counsel to help the young man come to his senses. After two unproductive hours of talking with the young man and reasoning with him using the latest medical journals, charts, and photos, the good doctor had an idea! “Son, do dead men bleed?” He asked. The young man thought for a moment and then responded, “well, if a person is dead, there is no heartbeat to pump the blood and, therefore, no blood pressure to force the blood out of the body, so, no, dead men do not bleed.” Upon hearing this, the doctor took a needle and pricked the young man’s index finger. As the blood began to ooze from the small wound, the young man grabbed his finger and cried with great excitement, “well, what do you know! Dead men DO bleed after all!

See the point (pardon the pun)? The young man in the story had a predetermined belief which he was unwilling to surrender, despite being shown ample proof that it was false. The overwhelming evidence given to him did not change his mind, but, rather, his mind changed the interpretation of the evidence to make it agree with what he already assumed to be true (his ‘presuppositional bias’). Perhaps this makes it easier now to understand how and why many of the people who actually witnessed Jesus’ most notable miracles were the same ones who demanded His crucifixion. Why do you suppose they were not convinced of His Divinity by the marvelous feats of the dead being raised and the blinded eyes receiving sight in their presence? It was simply because they did not WANT to be. In fact, this is nothing new, as many today would simply rather be their own god instead of bowing the knee to God and surrendering to His authority. It has been rightly stated that the atheist cannot find God for the same reason a criminal can’t find a policeman—-they simply aren’t looking. The unbeliever chooses to live in willful denial of what they know to be true about God’s existence in order to avoid accountability to Him. You will do well to keep this in mind in your evangelism endeavors. At your service,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’