Links & Quotes

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“God takes man as he is, simply a sinner, ‘without strength,’ and without goodness. He does not ask man to meet Him halfway between earth and heaven; He comes down all the way to earth in the Person of His Incarnate Son. He does not resort to half-measures, nor is He content with half-payment. He comes down to man in absolute and unconditional love; without terms or bargains; Himself paying the whole price, and thus leaving nothing for the sinner but to except the frank forgiveness which His boundless love has brought.” —Horatius Bonar

“Changing, updating, repositioning, and reshaping our churches can be very healthy, but only if we keep within parameters of change and reformation which acknowledge that there are some basic components of shape, form, elements, mission, and so forth which must characterize any church in order for it to be a church. For, at the end of the day, the church is not ours to build and shape as we like. The Church and all local churches as expressions of the universal Church belong to the Lord Jesus Christ. In His ascended glory He has taken on the task of building His Church. It is the top item on His agenda, because the Church is both the staging-ground and forward outpost of the Kingdom of God. … The Church belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ; He alone articulates the vision church leaders must follow if they would fulfill His purpose in having raised them up to build a church.” —T.M. Moore

“Repentance is the daily and hourly duty of a man who believes in Christ; and as we walk by faith from the wicket gate to the celestial city, so our right-hand companion all the journey through must be repentance.” —Charles Spurgeon

“If we’re spending our time and effort focusing on a return to normal, sometimes we miss the opportunity that’s right in front of us.” Read more from Seth Godin on why we should bounce forward.

Rodney Stark on why not all religions are the same.

This abortionist says he bought into the lie, but now—thank God!—he is pro-life. Check out his story.

[VIDEO] John Maxwell reminds us that communication is more than talking well—

Links & Quotes

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Today is Thomas Jefferson’s birthday (born April 13, 1743). Inscribed on the Jefferson Memorial are these fitting words from the author of the Declaration of Independence: “I have sworn, upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”

“God will look to every soul like its first love because He is its first love. Your place in heaven will seem to be made for you and you alone, because you were made for it—made for it stitch by stitch as a glove is made for a hand.” —C.S. Lewis

“A good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you and were helped by you will remember you when forget-me-nots have withered. Carve your name on hearts, not on marble.” —Charles Spurgeon

A very interesting look at demographics in this post: What will world religions look like in 2050?

“But certainly that expression of seeking the Lord, is very commonly used to signify something more; it implies that God Himself is the great good desired and sought after; that the blessings pursued are God’s gracious presence, the blessed manifestations of Him, union and intercourse with Him; or, in short, God’s manifestations and communications of Himself by His Holy Spirit.” —Jonathan Edwards

Book Reviews From 2014

8 Quotes From “The Facts On World Religions”

The Fact On World ReligionsThe Facts On World Religions is a broad overview of the four major religions of the world—Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism. You can read my full book review by clicking here. These are some of the passages I found noteworthy….

“Positive criticism: Being critical of other people’s beliefs is necessary for the sake of what is true and what is good. Every idea in the world is not true, regardless of what relativists claim. And some ideas are harmful, including religious ideas. We have also been critical of our own faith when needed, so when we ask adherents of other religions to analyze their own perspectives, we are not requesting that they do something we ourselves have neglected.” 

“The Bible’s uniqueness in some 20 different areas—including many specific predictions of the future (especially as to the Messiah), theology and content, textual preservation against all odds, the physical resurrection from the dead of its central character, scientific and medical prevision, the miraculous existence of Israel, historic and archaeological accuracy, victory over all criticism, and massive influence in human history—is virtual proof that the Bible comprises God’s revelation to humanity. Because it alone is evidentially and independently verified, at points of conflict all other scriptures are, by definition, false. … The manuscript evidence proving the New Testament’s accuracy is about a thousand times better than for ancient manuscripts that scholars everywhere concede are reliable.”

“Historical facts confirm that the Qur’an has experienced significant corruption through various means. Texts such as The Origins of the Qur’an (edited by Ibn Warraq), though sometimes displaying a rationalistic bias, nevertheless prove beyond doubt that the Qur’an is not a pure text. … Dr. William Miller reveals that for some years after the death of Muhammad there was great confusion as to what material of all that had been preserved should be included in the Qur’an. Finally, in the caliphate of Uthman (644-656 AD) one text was given official approval, and all other material was destroyed.” 

“Buddha did not even claim that his teachings were a unique and original source of wisdom. Buddha always said, ‘Don’t take what I’m saying [that is, on my own authority], just try to analyze as far as possible and see whether what I’m saying makes sense or not. If it doesn’t make sense, discard it. If it does make sense, then pick it up.’” —Clive Erricker

“Internal contradictions in Buddhism make it impossible to know what is true and what is false, leading to an emphasis on subjectivism and experientialism to discover ‘truth,’ rather than upon objective data.” 

“Consider the Wall Street Journal/Heritage Foundation’s ‘Index of Economic Freedom Report.’ From 1995 to 2008, the ‘mostly free’ categories of nations include only some Muslim states, while the ‘mostly unfree’ and ‘repressed’ categories include the large majority of Muslim nations; no Muslim nation exists in the ‘free’ category. Some 600 million souls live in dismal poverty. And it’s not difficult to see why: The average man, woman or child living in a repressed or mostly unfree economy lives a life of poverty on only about $2,800 a year. Compare this with the prosperous residents of the world’s free economies, where the average per-capita income is $21,200, or nearly eight times greater. Put simply, the difference between poverty and prosperity is freedom.”

“Islam may be called a ‘religion of peace,’ but history paints a different picture, no matter how many individual Muslims are peace-loving. The book that most regulates Islam, the Qur’an, is mixed at best in this regard. Entirely different religions, both logically justified, can be extracted from its pages. There are verses about peace and tolerance, but also verses about intolerance, Holy War against non-Muslims, and subjugating the world to the will of Allah. … Evils done in the name of Christian faith have been committed either by nominal Christians who are unbelievers or by deceived believers. In both cases the people are acting inconsistently with Christian faith and the clear teachings of Christian Scripture.” 

“Too few appreciate how critically unique biblical Christianity is when compared to other religions—or the implications. For example, Christianity is the only religion based on the death of its founder, a death that forever altered the course of human history. No other religion has the literal physical resurrection of its founder. Biblical Christianity is the only religion having solid evidence to prove it true. It’s the only religion offering eternal life as a free gift through grace, and the only religion demonstrating beyond the shadow of a doubt that God truly loves us—as demonstrated at the Cross. Biblical Christianity is the only religion to dramatically improve the welfare of humanity in a score of areas.”

The Facts On World Religions (book review)

The Fact On World ReligionsAs a Christian, I have always taken seriously the admonition of the Apostle Peter to, “Always be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks you the reason for the hope you have. Do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15). Not being able to answer is unacceptable, and so I want to diligently study. The Facts On World Religions by John Ankerberg, John Weldon & Dillion Burroughs is just the book to help me in this pursuit.

The Facts On is a well-researched, well-footnoted, helpful guide to learn the basic information on four of the world’s predominate religions: Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. For all four religions the authors give a broad overview in the categories of:

  • What are this religion’s central beliefs?
  • How did this religion originate?
  • Is the founder of this religion who he claimed to be?
  • Are this religion’s scriptures reliable?

Having each religion covered in the same four categories make a side-by-side comparison much easier. Although this book is not an in-depth study, every chapter is heavily notated to make it easy to find additional study materials on each religion. The last section of the book is a summation of the findings and addresses the questions: Is all religion good? Is only one religion fully true? Are Christians intolerant to say Christ is the only way? What are the consequences for believing the way these religions teach?

All in all this book is a very handy guide for any student who wants to be prepared to give an answer.

Check out this video from Greg Koukl on why Christians should defend their faith…

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