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Showing posts from May, 2015

Natural and Supernatural Dentistry

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As a full-time missionary, my needs are often met through non-monetary means such as hospitality offers and people giving me things without asking for them. On rare occasions I have sought assistance from (mostly Christian) organizations. In November 2011, a filling came out while staying with friends in Minneapolis. Soon I heard about a ministry in St. Paul called the Union Gospel Mission, which provides free dental care for people considered “low income.” My first checkup there revealed other cavities in my mouth. I had those filled as well.
Since then I’ve returned to the Union Gospel Mission after two more fillings came out. The most recent happened just over a year ago. It was discovered the cavity in that tooth had grown to where another filling could not be put in permanently. The dentist advised me to either get a root canal (which I would have to pay for) or have the tooth extracted. Apart from the expense, I didn’t want a root canal after reading negative reports from people …

Refills of the Spirit

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Today is Pentecost Sunday, which commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the church 50 days after Easter as recorded in Acts 2...
1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.  3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.  4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
God wants us to experience our own personal Pentecost. Unfortunately many Christians are mistakenly taught that being born again and filled with the Holy Spirit are the same thing. Numerous Scriptures disprove that. Look at Acts 19...
1 And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples  2 he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit …

Thoughts and Prayers

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Often when a tragedy occurs such as this past Tuesday’s train wreck in Philadelphia, people will say to victims and family members, “Our thoughts and prayers are with you.”  Many of them may be sincere in expressing their condolences but are they really being helpful just thinking about another person’s calamity? Nowadays people say, “Our thoughts go out to you” because it's politically incorrect to mention prayers. What good are thoughts going to do for someone unless prayers are attached?
It’s true thoughts can have an impact on our own lives. Proverbs 23:7 says,“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” In Matthew 5:27-28, Jesus even equated the thought of committing adultery to the actual sin.
On the other hand, good thoughts towards others will help only if acted upon. Let’s suppose the Lord puts it on your heart to give something to someone. Would that person benefit just by you thinking about blessing him? Of course not! James 2:16 says, “…and one of you says to them, ‘Depart…

Discernment For Donations

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Often I receive Facebook friend requests from ministers (mostly from Africa and Asia) who eventually send emails asking for money; even though it's clearly stated on my wall I do not send donations in response to unsolicited emails. 1 Thessalonians 5:12 (KJV) tells us “…to know them which labour among you.” I’m more inclined to give to ministers I have a relationship with and/or whose teachings have impacted my life. Galatians 6:6 says, “Let him who is taught the word share in all good things with him who teaches.”
While some of the appeals I receive by email may be for legitimate purposes, there are many others that are fraudulent. In my Facebook inbox, I’ve seen similarly worded messages from strangers saying, “I came across your contact profile and become interested to be your friend and I have some investment project in your country.” I’ve ignored these messages especially since most of them wanted a reply sent to a separate email address. One man I know was conned out of $400 …

Lucy

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One morning a young man came to my door promoting his tree-trimming business. I took the flyer he offered and then handed him a gospel tract, hoping to have an opportunity to lead him to the One who died on a tree for his sins. Instead this man said he believed in evolution because “it makes sense.” I then asked if he had any proof that evolution is true. 
He replied, “Lucy.” 
I then asked “Who’s Lucy?” Certainly he wasn’t talking about the Peanuts character. This man was referring to a so-called missing link discovered in Ethiopia over 40 years ago. “Lucy” is the nickname assigned to several hundred pieces of bone representing about 40% of the skeleton of a female hominid that supposedly lived 3.2 million years ago.
I’ve heard other nonbelievers tell me, “I believe in science.” Well, so do I. True science never contradicts the Bible. Various archaeological discoveries such as the Dead Sea Scrolls have proven the validity of Scripture. Many famous scientists have also been Christians suc…