Archive | April, 2012

15 questions evolutionists cannot satisfactorily answer

26 Apr

1. How did life originate? How did life with hundreds of proteins originate just by chemistry without intelligent design?

2. How did the DNA code originate? The code is a sophisticated language system with letters and words where the meaning of the words is unrelated to the chemical properties of the letters—just as the information on this page is not a product of the chemical properties of the ink (or pixels on a screen). What other coding system has existed without intelligent design?

3. How could such errors (mutations) create 3 billion letters of DNA information to change a microbe into a microbiologist? How can scrambling existing DNA information create a new biochemical pathway or nano-machines?

4. Why is natural selection taught as ‘evolution’ as if it explains the origin of the diversity of life?

5. How did new biochemical pathways, which involve multiple enzymes working together in sequence, originate?

6. Living things look like they were designed, so how do evolutionists know that they were not designed? Why should science be restricted to naturalistic causes rather than logical causes?

7. How did multi-cellular life originate?

8. How did sex originate?

9. Why are the (expected) countless millions of transitional fossils missing?

10. How do ‘living fossils’ remain unchanged over supposed hundreds of millions of years?

11. How did blind chemistry create mind/intelligence, meaning, altruism and morality?

12. Why is evolutionary ‘just-so’ story-telling tolerated?

13. Where are the scientific breakthroughs due to evolution? Why do schools and universities teach evolution so dogmatically, stealing time from experimental biology that so benefits humankind?

14. Why is evolution, a theory about history, taught as if it is the same as this operational science?

15. Why is a fundamentally religious idea, a dogmatic belief system that fails to explain the evidence, taught in science classes? If “you can’t teach religion in science classes”, why is evolution taught?

The Life of Charles Colson

23 Apr

Heaven Gains; We’ve Lost a Giant

22 Apr

By Charlie Butts, One News Now

Chuck Colson, known worldwide for founding Prison Fellowship and several other ministry outreaches, has gone home to be with the Lord.

On March 31, the 80-year-old Colson had surgery for a pool of blood on the surface of his brain. In the days following surgery, he seemed to improve slightly each day but took a turn for the worse late Tuesday (April 17). Family members were called to his bedside. He passed away Saturday afternoon shortly after 3:00 p.m. (Eastern) at a northern Virginia hospital.

In a statement from Jim Liske, CEO of Prison Fellowship, says while he, the family, and numerous others grieve the loss, “we rejoice that Chuck is with Jesus, we rejoice as we reflect on his life and legacy and that we could be a part of that, and we rejoice when we think of all the redeemed in heaven who will greet him and thank him for the role he played in their salvation.”

Liske tells OneNewsNow the world has lost one of the most eloquent and influential voices in evangelicalism today.

“Chuck was an individual who spoke with great authority about the grace of God,” Liske shares. “Chuck truly believed in this interchange and tension between truth and grace, and that you needed the most of both continually — because he had experienced incredible transformation in his [own] life.”

Colson was special counsel to President Richard M. Nixon from 1969 to 1973. After pleading guilty for his role in the Watergate scandal, he served seven months in prison — becoming a Christian while serving his sentence. Out of that experience, Colson founded Prison Fellowship and the Colson Center for Christian Worldview.

“Chuck modeled and believed to the core of his being in the transformational power of the gospel,” Liske adds. “And he believed that the local church was God’s ‘Plan A’ in developing a movement of local churches across the country to carry the mantel of the gospel.”

The afternoon before he became ill, Colson hosted 53 Christian leaders from around the country and challenged them to understand the transformational power of the gospel in individuals’ lives and the lives of organizations — and that they “would be the movement that Jesus so desired.” Liske says Colson was the “champion who held that flag very high.”

Dr. Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, Texas, describes Colson as “one of the really unique characters that ever crosses the stage of human history.”
“You couldn’t meet him and not know that you’re … meeting one of the most interesting characters around,” Paige tells OneNewsNow. “And of course, he was a classic case of a brilliant man who made serious mistakes. But out of that serious mistake he found the Lord and righted his ship in the middle of the ocean and sailed off to the most stellar victories that anybody could ever have.”

The seminary president believes Colson never forgot the prisoners he served time with.

“And of course so many prisoners who really had no future life have come to have a future as a result of the ministry of Chuck Colson,” notes Patterson, “and to say nothing of individuals outside of the prisons whose lives crossed his and whose lives were pretty well messed up but found a way. He was just a remarkable person in his faithfulness to Christ.”

American Family Association (AFA) president Tim Wildmon notes that in the decades following conversion to Christianity, Colson became one of the “generals” in the Christian Community.

“His writings, his organizational skills that he had in putting groups together, his apologetics, defending the faith capabilities,” Wildmon lists. “I mean, he had a lot going for him — and he means so much to the Christian community in America. He’s going to be very missed.”

Wildmon says he is heartened knowing that Colson is now in heaven. He adds that Colson’s Prison Fellowship ministry will continue to impact lives as his legacy to not only America, but other countries where it was set up. And Wildmon notes that Colson’s radio program Breakpoint will continue on American Family Radio, the radio network operated by AFA.

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council tells OneNewsNow that over the last decade at FRC, Colson became his friend and mentor.

“And just as I’ve seen him, he is kind of the statesman theologian of our time and as a Francis Schaeffer [type of person] helping us know how to take the Word of God and apply it to our lives,” he offers. “And there’s no question that he will be sorely missed.”

According to Perkins, Colson challenged Christian America to be salt and light to everyone, including the down and out — a challenge the FRC president says remains today.

“I think the challenge from Chuck Colson will be to continue to live out our faith in an authentic way where we are meeting the needs of those around us — physical, spiritual, emotional needs — but also holding up a standard of righteousness and truth,” he adds.

Colson is survived by his wife of more than 45 years, Patty, and three children. Funeral arrangements are pending. Cards may be sent to Prison Fellowship Ministries, 44180 Riverside Parkway, Lansdowne, VA 20176.

 

Pray Today!

21 Apr

Pray. Because somewhere in Arizona right now, today, this very moment —

A discouraged pastor is contemplating quitting the ministry.

A teen-age “church girl” wants to get an abortion because she’s afraid her parents will get angry with her if they find out she is pregnant.

A Christian businessman is thinking about embezzling from his employer to feed his gambling habit.

A church is under spiritual attack.

Junior high and high school students are mentally tuning out the church.

College students are walking away from their faith because they were never taught how to defend it.

A mother is discouraged and feeling alone.

A teen is thinking about suicide.

Someone is have a crisis of faith, doubting God.

A marriage is crumbling.

The Body of Christ is bickering.

Temptation is everywhere: to view pornography, do drugs, drink excessively, engage in destructive behavior.

Pray for your spouse. Your children. Your grandchildren. Your pastor. Your church. Your community.

Talk to your loved ones today. Be IN their lives. Never cease praying.

 

Chuck Colson’s Condition Worsens

18 Apr

LATEST – URGENT UPDATE on Chuck Colson’s Condition:

LANSDOWNE, Va., April 18, 2012—Jim Liske, CEO of Prison Fellowship Ministries, gave the following update this morning to the staff and supporters of Prison Fellowship, Justice Fellowship, and the Colson Center for Christian Worldview:

“Dear Friends:

It is with a heavy, but hopeful heart that I share with you that it appears our friend, brother, and founder will soon be home with the Lord. Chuck’s condition took a decided turn yesterday, and the doctors advised Patty and the family to gather by his bedside.

As you know, Chuck underwent surgery more than two weeks ago to remove a pool of clotted blood on the surface of his brain. And while we had seen some hopeful signs for Chuck’s recovery—including his ability to talk happily with Patty and the kids—it seems that God may be calling him home.

I cannot tell you how much your prayers, cards, and well-wishes have meant to Patty and the family—and to Chuck. He loves you all deeply, and I know that his greatest desire beyond seeing Jesus is that the work he and all of us have been called to will continue. As Chuck would say, ‘Remain at your posts and do your duty—for the glory of God and His kingdom’

As soon as we have more information, I will be sure to let you know. And as always, keep praying for Chuck and Patty.”

Newsweek’s ‘Jesus’ vs. the Real Jesus

16 Apr

By Summit Ministries

He is risen! He is risen indeed!

For centuries Christians have greeted one another on Easter Sunday with this simple, yet robust pronouncement, which has historically been understood as the center of the Christian faith and worldview. Every year, several mainstream media outlets, including Newsweek magazine, seek to sully this message by futilely attempting to discredit the historical Jesus and/or Scripture. This year Newsweek’s Andrew Sullivan took a different route: instead of outright denials of Jesus, the resurrection, and Christianity, he attempted to rewrite the focal point of Christianity, changing it from the resurrection to a Jesus made in his image.

Sullivan is a well-known British columnist who claims Roman Catholicism. In this year’s cover story, he offers his view of Jesus. As the subtitle of the article puts it: “Christianity has been destroyed by politics, priests, and get-rich evangelists. Ignore them, writes Andrew Sullivan, and embrace Him.”

But Sullivan relies on faulty logic, disingenuous reasoning, and out-right falsities to make his argument that seekers will find the true Jesus when they strip away all else but the red letters in the Gospels.

Sullivan’s Claims vs. the Truth

Claim No. 1: The Gospels Can’t Be Trusted as Historical

An oft-repeated claim Sullivan uses in his piece is that the Gospels are unreliable for much else besides Jesus’ words. Opening with the story of Thomas Jefferson creating his own Bible only containing the words, teachings, and parables of Jesus, Sullivan offers the following critique of the gospels:

Others defend a rigid biblical literalism, adamantly wishing away a century and a half of scholarship that has clearly shown that the canonized Gospels were written decades after Jesus’ ministry, and are copies of copies of stories told by those with fallible memory.

In almost the same breath as his admonishment, Sullivan praises Christ’s teachings on wealth, power, and sin, along with the way Jesus lived and died. But this begs the questions: if we can’t trust the Gospels in some matters, how can we trust them in matters Sullivan admires? If we know portions to be untrue, shouldn’t we be suspicious of the whole?

More serious, though, is the fact that Sullivan is just plain wrong about the Gospels’ historical merits. Apologist and author Mike Licona pointed out in an interview with Summit Ministries that Sullivan’s historiography itself is suspect. “If we took that same approach to the rest of ancient history, we would have to discard most of what we know about the past,” he said.

Our knowledge of the life of Caesar Augustus is a prime example. Licona pointed out that most of what we know comes from six documents. Of those, five were written between 90 and 200 years after Caesar’s death. Yet, we still rely on them because of their historical merits, just as we should the Gospels.

The New Testament Gospels were written between 35 and 65 years after their events, about as far in the past for the disciples as the Vietnam War or World War II is for us. Yet we have no problem believing eyewitness accounts of those events. “[Sullivan is showing] historiographical naiveté,” Licona said. “He’s no historian.”

Also implied in Sullivan’s claim are supposed problems with the way information was handed down prior to the penning of the Gospels. Biblical scholarship has shown, though, that the mix of oral and written tradition used in first-century Palestine succeeded in preserving historical accounts.

As Summit alumnus Randy Hardman writes in the ebook True Reason, the preface to the Gospel of Luke tells us that several written accounts of Jesus’ life, ministry, and death existed at the time. While the oral tradition may have been preferred, scribes of the day routinely took notes to help them memorize teachings, events, etc. The verification of Luke’s accounts in Acts, as made famous by the late Colin Hemer, lends great credibility to his Gospel. And when compared to the events in Luke, the other Gospels hold their historical integrity as well.

Many books have been devoted to defending the historicity of the Gospels. Suffice it to say that Sullivan’s claim that they are unreliable is simply not, well, reliable.

Claim No. 2: Jesus Didn’t Teach About Politics and Sexuality

Another of Sullivan’s main points is that current trends in Christendom betray the true message of Jesus:

The issues that Christianity obsesses over today simply do not appear in either Jefferson’s or the original New Testament. Jesus never spoke of homosexuality or abortion, and his only remarks on marriage were a condemnation of divorce (now commonplace among American Christians) and forgiveness for adultery. The family? He disowned his parents in public as a teen, and told his followers to abandon theirs if they wanted to follow him. Sex? He was a celibate who, along with his followers, anticipated an imminent End of the World where reproduction was completely irrelevant.

In passages like these, Sullivan makes it clear his version of Jesus is woefully out of context of the Gospels themselves, as well as the rest of Scripture. In fact, so much of Jesus’ teachings were based on Old Testament and Jewish tradition that to ignore those sources is to strip Jesus’ teachings of any meaning. As Trevin Wax puts it, Sullivan wants us to have Jesus without Jesus.

Let’s take a look at just three examples:

  • Marriage. When it comes to marriage, Jesus did address more than just divorce and adultery. In Matthew 19:1-9, Jesus recounts Genesis in describing marriage as the bond between one man and one woman. Though he never directly addresses homosexuality, Jesus says plainly in Matthew 5:17, ” Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish      them but to fulfill them.” That includes books of the Pentateuch where homosexuality is prohibited as counter to the cultural good of marriage. In the end, Licona says, “Jesus doesn’t have to address every single issue in the Old Testament to say he believes in it.” (For more information of why marriage and sexuality are key components of the biblical worldview, see the February issue of The Summit Journal).
  • Politics. Sullivan’s take on Jesus’ politics suffers from his reading the 21st century into a 1st century text. First, Jesus did make political      statements. “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the      things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21) is undeniably a political      statement, setting up God’s authority over the state. Licona points out      that further instruction from Jesus on political involvement, though,      wouldn’t have made sense to the people he was addressing. “It was not a      democracy. The average person — one-third were slaves — lived in poverty,”      Licona said. “They had no political power. It’s not like in Western      culture today where we get to vote. That’s not the way the Roman world in      which Jesus lived worked, so he’s not going to be addressing these issues.”
  • Abortion. Sullivan claims elsewhere that the saints focused on holy living and ignored political battles. He’s wrong. Alvin Schmidt documents in How Christianity Changed the World the ways in which Christians challenged the common practices of infanticide and abortion in the Roman world, even while they made no attempts to resist being persecuted, tortured, and killed themselves (For more on that, see the December 2011 issue of The Summit Journal). Sullivan does concede that there are some instances of grave injustice where political action is  necessary. But if we divorce Jesus’ teachings from their political implications, how are we to know when political action is necessary? (For a closer look at the role of politics according to the biblical worldview, see the March issue of The Summit Journal).

Claim No. 3: The Point of Christianity is the Way Jesus Lived

Sullivan appears to believe that the hinge of the gospels is not the death and resurrection of Christ but Jesus’ altruism and meek demeanor:

The cross itself was not the point; nor was the intense physical suffering he endured. The point was how he conducted himself through it all — calm, loving, accepting, radically surrendering even the basic control of his own body and telling us that this was what it means to truly transcend our world and be with God.

This view negates the whole understanding of Jesus Christ told in both the Old and New Testaments. Without the resurrection, Jesus’ actions during his life and his persecution make him no different than the thousands of Christian martyrs who have come since. No grace, no propitiation, no conquering of sin and death.

Plus, it’s important to note that the fact of the resurrection actually has serious scholarly backing. Dr. Gary Habermas has pointed out in myriad articles and books that belief in the bodily resurrection of Jesus is intelligent and reasonable, even when biblical sources are taken out of the equation.

Sullivan claims that true Christianity involves a renunciation of power, but the message of Jesus’ death and resurrection actually focuses us on an altogether higher level of power — the victory over evil and death. As author Matthew Lee Anderson points out:

Sullivan points to the crown of thorns and the mocking of his doubters as further evidence of Jesus’ renunciation of earthly power: yet the irony of faith is that the crown of thorns is revealed as the crown of the King of Kings. The one enthroned in heaven laughs, after all, because he understands that the joke is on those who scorned him.

Christians Should Be Prepared for These Types of Arguments

Sullivan’s arguments represent a significant change to the typical “Jesus is a fraud” article so common in news magazines over the years. They’re compelling, emotionally powerful, and disarmingly appealing.

And yet his reinterpretation of Jesus stands in stark contrast to the “whole counsel of god” and serious Bible scholarship. Jesus is more than just another in a long line of suffering prophets: he is the fulfillment of prophecy itself, the lynchpin of all reality, the one who conquered death and hell and made possible our reconciliation with God.

He is risen. He is risen indeed.

More Resources

Arizona Governor’s Prayer Breakfast 2012

11 Apr

The Arizona Governor’s Prayer Breakfast will be held this year on April 12, 2012, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Phoenix.

Dr. Joseph M. Stowell is Cornerstone University’s 11th president. He began his presidential duties on Feb. 1, 2008.

“This is where my heart is,” Stowell said of Cornerstone. “I’m most excited about being around students in this generation. I want to continue the tradition of this university being a community where students are encouraged and nurtured by the environment and culture. I want students to thrive here. It excites me that God’s hand is in it.”

A nationally known speaker and author of more than 20 books, Dr. Stowell also serves on the board and executive committee of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. He was president at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago for 18 years. He received a Doctor of Divinity degree from The Master’s College.

Stowell serves as an Associate Teacher with RBC Ministries and shares his love for the Word of God in several of its ministries: Strength for the Journey, Our Daily Bread, Day of Discovery, and Discovery House Publishers. Joe and his wife Martie, have three adult children and ten grandchildren.

Brad Cesmat. CEO Pros2Preps.com will be our Emcee.

Inspirational Music provided by “The North Phoenix Trio.”

Presentation of the Flag: Luke Color Guard.

COST:

Per Person: $35.00
Per Table of 10: $350.00

If you would like to order on line using our secure PayPal account, just simply visit our website at http://www.lcarizona.org If you have any problems accessing this link, please call Chaplain Donna Kafer at (602) 435-5144 for assistance.