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Has Doubt Inspired Heresy?

At the urging of my daughter, I watched a Netflix film entitled Come Sunday, and I think I’m heartbroken. This movie is the true-life portrayal of Bishop Carlton Pearson, who decided there is no hell. During a documentary about the 1994 Rwandan genocide, Pearson believed God spoke to him, and because God is love and Jesus died for the sins of the whole world, everyone goes to heaven.[1]
     A few days later, I read an article about an applauded author I recognized from my son’s teen years. Joshua Harris impacted teens and singles in the late 1990s and early 2000s with his books I Kissed Dating Goodbye and Boy Meets Girl – Say Hello to Courtship. Harris, the former pastor of Covenant Life Church in Gaithersburg, Maryland, just divorced his wife and announced he’s not a Christian anymore, at least not by evangelical standards. Fox News reported, “In an Instagram post, he also apologized for his previously held views, including "bigotry" to the LGBTQ community.”[2]
     Thi…
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Run In Such A Way

I’ve never thought much about marathons before today. Have you? Even with the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013, I didn’t think about the race. I only thought about the tragedy. I guess my simple, nonathletic mind has trouble understanding what would drive someone to run such a distance. But, I truly admire those who do.
Did you know marathons originated around 490BC? According to www.justrunlah.com, the marathon came to be “at the time when the Persians were invading Greece.” This would have been four years prior to Xerxes ascending the Persian throne, seven years before his outlandish party, and about ten years before Esther became his choice for queen.[1]
Supposedly, a Greek messenger, Pheidippides, ran from the Battle of Marathon to proclaim to the people of Athens, that the Greeks defeated the Persians. Unfortunately, after running such a distance without stopping, Pheidippides fell to the ground and died of exhaustion.
Originally, the running distance of 40.8 kilometers was used for …

Happy Endings

I love happy endings. Don’t you? More and more, I find myself staying away from disturbing movies, books, or TV programs, in favor of a lighter, sweeter, and pleasing finale. I guess that’s why I watch the Hallmark Channel and HGTV. Every movie on Hallmark has a happy ending. And, have you ever viewed a “fixer upper” type show where the family didn’t love their home?
Recently, the Lord gave me a happy endingwhen He taught me the deeper meaning to a passage of scripture I had wondered about for years. This happened during a prayer vigil at church. In preparation for our prayer time, each person would read two chapters of scripture. That day, I read John chapters one and two.
You see, I understood John 2:1-11 on the surface, yet I always felt it had significance beyond the words I read. From time to time, I would ask for clarification, but nothing. So, I’d set it aside and move on. Funny thing though, on the day God opened my eyes, I wasn’t asking for an explanation. Still, in the reading…

IS UNFORGIVENESS SEEKING REVENGE?

Anne Graham Lotz, called “the best preacher in the family” by her father, Billy Graham, is one of my favorite Bible teachers.

Years ago, I had the privilege of hearing her speak at the Ohio Christian Education Association Conference (OCEA) in Akron, Ohio. Since then, I have admired this godly woman, and if ever there was a teacher after whom I would want to pattern a ministry, it would be her.

Recently Anne was interviewed on Moody Radio’s Equipped with Chris Brooks. https://www.moodyradio.org/programs/equipped-with-chris-brooks/2019/03/03.26.2019-wounded-by-gods-people/
In her interview about her newest book, WOUNDED by God’s People, Anne said, “Sometimes our means of revenge is to withhold forgiveness.”

I found Anne’s words unsettling, and so profound I had to write them down. Around the same time as this interview, our pastor was preaching about forgiveness and unforgiveness. While I was happy to receive his teaching, I kept reflecting on Anne’s words. I probably should have known God …

CONTEMPLATING JUDAS

There are many things in scripture I don’t understand, and so, I skim over them, or I set them aside until I have a reason to dig. Today is a day for digging.
I love Moody Radio – WCRF – 103.3 or 90.5 on the FM dial. In the past few weeks, Pastor Colin Smith of Unlocking the Bible has been reading from his new book, Heaven, So Near – So Far. It’s the story of Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Jesus.
These readings intrigued me because in January I thought quite a bit about Judas. Why? I was preparing the communion service for our Women in Ministry (WIM) Retreat, based on Luke 7:36-50. Near the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, at the home of Simon, the Pharisee, a woman, plagued by many sins, poured a fragrant and very expensive oil, Spikenard, on the feet of Jesus.
In my studies, I found John’s gospel confirms four times that Judas was the son of Simon.[1] Some have suggested the Pharisee in Luke was Simon Iscariot. Still, Scripture mentions another Simon, a healed leper, who was present whe…