Category: Uncategorized

Ten reasons we suffer

Horatio G. Spafford was a prominent attorney in Chicago in the 1800s and a friend of evangelist Dwight L. Moody. While Spafford was both respected and comfortable, he was not free from severe hardship. First, he lost his four-year-old son to scarlet fever. Then his real estate investments along Lake Michigan literally went up in flames in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Not long after that, his four daughters drowned in a shipwreck, and his wife Anna survived the ordeal only because the ship’s debris buoyed her as she floated, unconscious, in the Atlantic Ocean.

Crossing the sea to join his bereaved wife, Spafford was called to the captain’s deck as the ship sailed past the foamy deep where his daughters were lost. The captain informed him that the waters there were three miles deep. Returning to his cabin, Spafford penned these words to the now-famous hymn:

When peace like a river attendeth my way,

When sorrows like sea billows roll;

Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,

It is well, it is well with my soul

Why did such tragedy befall Spafford? He certainly wondered — and wrestled with the question the rest of his life — but in writing this poem, he rested in the sovereignty of God.
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A different kind of commentary

The Epistle of Jude may be one of the most neglected New Testament books. Bible readers are tempted – in part by its brevity and in part by its similarity to 2 Peter 2 – to skip over Jude on the way to Revelation, or to give this short epistle little more than a glance.

This is unfortunate, because Jude speaks volumes about the value of Christian apologetics. The Last Apologist is more than a verse-by-verse commentary. Each chapter explores key words and phrases, and poses thought-provoking questions that make this a handy resource for personal or group study.

Order your copy in print or Kindle versions.

For bulk orders at a deeply discounted price, send your request to cdowell@mobaptist.org.

Pick up your copy of The Apologist’s Tool Kit

3d_apologists_FINALFollowers of Jesus always have faced attacks from outside the church – from worshipers in the cult of Caesar to radical Islamists. But potentially more damaging are threats from within – from false teachers who tickle our ears (2 Tim. 4:3) to false prophets who come to us with “cleverly devised myths” (2 Peter 1:16).

The Apologist’s Tool Kit equips you to defend the Christian faith with gentleness and respect. This easy-to-read reference addresses some of the most commonly challenged Christian doctrines, from the existence of God to the authority of Scripture. Each chapter concludes with probing questions, talking points, and references for further reading, making this a handy resource for personal or group study.

Order your copy in print or a Kindle edition.

For bulk orders at a deeply discounted price, send your request to cdowell@mobaptist.org.

 

Is God guilty of genocide?

In The God Delusion, atheist Richard Dawkins vents:

“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

It seems odd that Dawkins, who has made a career out of pillorying a God he says does not exist, charges this fictional character with a plethora of crimes, including ethnic cleansing.

But the question itself is a valid one. When God instructs the Israelites to annihilate seven nations inhabiting the Promised Land to make room for His chosen people, He uses unambiguous terms.

In passages like Deuteronomy 7:1-2 and 20:16-17, God tells the Israelites: “you must completely destroy them … you must not let any living thing survive.”

And the biblical narrative suggests the commands are taken quite literally: “They [the Israelites] completely destroyed everything in the city [Jericho] with the sword — every man and woman, both young and old, and every ox, sheep and donkey” (Josh. 6:21).

Does Dawkins have a point?
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Robbing God

Does the Bible command tithing?

If we don’t tithe, are we robbing God?

Doesn’t the Old Testament teach tithing, while the New Testament stresses giving?

These are important questions, and every sincere Christian wants to get the answers right.

The Bible is our authority – and the last word on this issue. While it isn’t possible in this article to conduct an exhaustive study, we may highlight what the Old and New Testaments have to say.
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