I was going to write this month about someone else’s sins, but then, before I could throw the first stone, my conscience got the better of me. So I’m going to tell you about one of my own recent sins, and for two reasons.
First, anyone who serves in public ministry eventually becomes aware of the fact that there are people who think more highly of him (or her) than they should. This is especially true in these days of media ministry when folks don’t personally know those whom they are following, and an “image” can easily hide all the warts. When confronted with one’s admiring fans, one has a choice: Do I allow these folks to remain deceived, or do I shatter their false perceptions by letting them see what those who are close to me know only too well?
Although not a popular subject, most Christians who lean towards a literal interpretation of the Bible’s prophetic passages believe that Scripture foretells of an unprecedented, worldwide tribulation, one that will immediately precede Christ’s return. Descriptions of that worldwide tribulation can easily be found in the Book of Revelation, many of the Major and Minor Prophets, and in the teachings of Jesus. For example, during His Olivet Discourse, speaking about the time prior to His return, Jesus said,
For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short (Matt. 24:21-22).
In my February e-teaching titled Three Questionable Beliefs Christians Hold Concerning Modern Israel, I attempted to show that, because God is a moral being, He has not always historically sided with the nation of Israel. A moral being cannot side with people who become immoral. And for the same reason, God never gave the descendants of Israel perpetual, unconditional, sovereign right to the land called Palestine. If He did so apart from moral considerations, He would not be a moral being. This is Bible 101.
Dear Beloved Readers, I intended to send a followup article this month to February’s e-teaching on questionable beliefs Christians sometimes hold concerning modern-day Israel. And I’ve been working diligently on that followup article over the past few weeks. Due to an exciting opportunity at Heaven’s Family this month, however, I decided to postpone that followup article until next month in order to send you the special e-teaching below. I will return to the subject of modern-day Israel in April. For now, I hope you will enjoy this month’s e-teaching and prayerfully consider participating in the opportunity mentioned at the end. Thanks so much, David
There is a biblical story set in Samaria, the capital city of Israel, during a time when it was surrounded by a foreign army. The siege dragged on for months, and food prices behind the city walls had skyrocketed. People were dying of starvation. Some of the Israelites resorted to cannibalism in order to survive the famine. The crisis had reached its tipping point, and death was certain, either from hunger inside the city or from the sword and spear outside.
Is modern Israel a divinely-favored nation? For many Christians, the answer is a resounding yes.
Why is that?
You might be wondering why I would write on the subject of polygamy. Let me assure you it is not because I’m advocating it for anyone or considering it myself. I think polygamists—whether they be ancient biblical characters or their modern counterparts—generally err on a grand scale. I also think, however, there are some good reasons to study what Scripture has to say on the subject. One is because it can teach us something about our own relationship with God. I hope to provoke your thinking, as always. But first, some trivia:
In this final article that addresses “Divine Divorce Doctrine,” I want to respond to some of the common arguments and objections of those who advocate divorce for anyone who has been previously divorced and remarried, followed by remarriage to their original spouse if possible, or celibacy if not possible, until their original spouse is dead.
My hope is to rescue those who are coming under the influence of Divine Divorce Doctrine—before their marriages and families are also left as carnage in its foul wake.
Last month’s e-teaching generated a lot of interest, receiving 4,700 views on our website so far. In that teaching, I did my best to show that God does not require of divorced and married Christians what “Divine Divorce Proponents” claim He requires, namely that they divorce again and remarry their first spouse, or live celibate lives until that person, to whom they are allegedly “still married in God’s eyes,” is dead. If you didn’t read that article, it would be best that you do before you read what follows.
One of the earliest lessons learned by the Mayflower pilgrims who founded Plymouth Colony is one that many Americans seem to have forgotten or never learned. It is a lesson about human nature, poverty, prosperity and toxic charity. It has profound implications for ministries like Heaven’s Family and for any Christian who is trying to follow Jesus and help the poor. I heard the story some years ago in a series of books that many homeschooling families use to educate their children known as the Uncle Eric Series, authored by Richard Maybury. Today’s article is his. — David
The Great Thanksgiving Hoax
by Richard Maybury
Each year at this time school children all over America are taught the official Thanksgiving story, and newspapers, radio, TV, and magazines devote vast amounts of time and space to it. It is all very colorful and fascinating.
It is also very deceiving. This official story is nothing like what really happened. It is a fairy tale, a whitewashed and sanitized collection of half-truths which divert attention away from Thanksgiving’s real meaning.
John is an unregenerate drug-user who, during a weekend fling in Las Vegas, falls for a flirtatious bartender named Lisa and marries her at the Little Neon Chapel. Their marriage lasts one week.
Fast forward to 20 years later. John is a completely different man. He’s been born again and drug-free for 16 years, and he has been married for 15 of them to a devoted Christian woman named Karen. They have 4 beautiful children, ages 5 through 14, whom Karen homeschools, primarily because they want to make sure that their children are raised in the “nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4).