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General Discusssion (Religion)

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  • Avoiding a False Theology of Suffering (Protestant and Evangelical Caucus and Devotional)

    01/16/2018 5:10:00 AM PST · by Gamecock · 2 replies
    Martin Luther’s tenure in the monastery was a time of spiritual desperation. He was tormented by unrelieved guilt coupled with a gripping fear of the wrath of God. Why would an educated man retreat to a barren cell and abuse himself with self-inflicted physical punishment? Why would a believer go out of his way to find personal suffering? The answer may be found partially, though not totally, in a concept that emerged in church history that equated suffering with merit. Monks fled to the desert to seek rigorous forms of asceticism and self-denial, not only as a form of spiritual...
  • Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 01-16-18

    01/15/2018 10:07:06 PM PST · by Salvation · 22 replies ^ | 01-16-18 | Revised New American Bible
    January 16, 2018 Tuesday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time Reading 1 1 Sm 16:1-13 The LORD said to Samuel:"How long will you grieve for Saul,whom I have rejected as king of Israel?Fill your horn with oil, and be on your way.I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem,for I have chosen my king from among his sons."But Samuel replied:"How can I go?Saul will hear of it and kill me."To this the LORD answered:"Take a heifer along and say,'I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.'Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I myself will tell you what to...
  • Resting in God's Sovereignty

    01/15/2018 4:42:14 PM PST · by metmom · 13 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1993 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    "[God] made known the mystery of His will according to His kind intention which He purposed in [Christ] with a view to an administration suitable to the fulness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things upon the earth" (Eph. 1:9-10). God is intimately involved in the flow of human history and is directing its course toward a specific, predetermined climax. For centuries men of various philosophical schools have debated the cause, course, and climax of human history. Some deny God and therefore deny any divine involvement in history....
  • The Opposite of Covetousness

    01/15/2018 4:41:46 PM PST · by metmom · 4 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1997 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    “Let your way of life be free from the love of money, being content with what you have” (Hebrews 13:5). If you are content with what God has given you, you will not be a person who is covetous or a lover of money. I once had a man come into my church office and confess the sin of gluttony. When I told him he did not look overweight, he answered, “I know. It is not that I eat too much but that I want to. I continually crave food. It’s an obsession.” Covetousness is very similar to that man’s...
  • Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 01-15-18

    01/14/2018 10:04:26 PM PST · by Salvation · 31 replies ^ | 01-15-18 | Revised New American Bible
    January 15, 2018 Monday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time Reading 1 1 Sm 15:16-23 Samuel said to Saul:"Stop! Let me tell you what the LORD said to me last night."Saul replied, "Speak!" Samuel then said: "Though little in your own esteem,are you not leader of the tribes of Israel?The LORD anointed you king of Israel and sent you on a mission, saying,'Go and put the sinful Amalekites under a ban of destruction.Fight against them until you have exterminated them.'Why then have you disobeyed the LORD?You have pounced on the spoil, thus displeasing the LORD."Saul answered Samuel: "I...
  • Pursuing God's Will

    01/14/2018 4:33:03 PM PST · by metmom · 2 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1993 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    "In all wisdom and insight [God] made known to us the mystery of His will" (Eph. 1:8-9). Even if you haven’t obtained academic degrees, you have wisdom that far surpasses the most educated unbeliever. When God redeemed you, He not only forgave your trespasses and removed the guilt and penalty of sin, but He also gave you spiritual wisdom and insight—two essential elements for godly living. Together they speak of the ability to understand God's will and apply it to your life in practical ways. As a believer you understand the most sublime truths of all. For example, you know...
  • Identifying with Those in Need

    01/14/2018 4:32:37 PM PST · by metmom · 3 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1997 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    “Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body” (Hebrews 13:2). Because we too are human beings, God makes it possible for us to empathize with others who might be enduring hardship. The Apostolic Confession, an ancient church confession, says, “If any Christian is condemned for Christ’s sake to the mines by the ungodly, do not overlook him, but from the proceeds of your toil and sweat, send him something to support himself, and to reward the soldier of Christ.” You can see from this quote that...
  • Catholic Caucus: Sunday Mass Readings, 01-14-18, Second Sunday of Ordinary Time

    01/14/2018 6:03:23 AM PST · by Salvation · 44 replies ^ | 01-14-18 | Revised New American Bible
    January 14, 2018 Second Sunday of Ordinary Time Reading 1 1 Sm 3:3b-10, 19 Samuel was sleeping in the temple of the LORDwhere the ark of God was.The LORD called to Samuel, who answered, "Here I am."Samuel ran to Eli and said, "Here I am. You called me.""I did not call you, " Eli said. "Go back to sleep."So he went back to sleep.Again the LORD called Samuel, who rose and went to Eli."Here I am, " he said. "You called me."But Eli answered, "I did not call you, my son. Go back to sleep." At that time Samuel...
  • Enjoying God's Forgiveness

    01/13/2018 6:19:56 PM PST · by metmom · 3 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1993 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    In Christ we have "the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of [God's] grace, which He lavished upon us" (Eph. 1:7-8). In Christ we have infinite forgiveness for every sin—past, present, and future. On Israel's Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) the high priest selected two goats. One was sacrificed; the other set free. Before releasing the second goat, the high priest symbolically placed the sins of the people on it by laying his hands on its head. This "scapegoat" was then taken a great distance from camp and released—never to return again (Lev. 16:7-10). The Greek word translated...
  • Showing Love Through Hospitality

    01/13/2018 6:19:22 PM PST · by metmom · 2 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1997 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it” (Hebrews 13:2). Hospitality should be a trait of all Christians, because whenever we display it, we minister to the Lord. If you are a Christian, your responsibility to love others does not stop with fellow believers. The apostle Paul is very explicit and direct about this: “See that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always seek after that which is good for one another and for all men” (1 Thess. 5:15). “All men” includes even your enemies. The “strangers”...
  • Why Professing Christ Is Becoming A 'Hate Crime' In The West

    01/12/2018 11:20:11 PM PST · by Oshkalaboomboom · 21 replies
    FrontPageMag ^ | Jan 12, 2018 | Raymond Ibrahim
    What is the source of dhimmitude—which in many ways paralyzes responses to Islam—in the West? First a definition: “dhimmitude,” which was coined by the late Christian president of Lebanon, Bashir Gemayel, and popularized by writer Bat Ye’or, is a neologism based on the Arabic word, dhimmi—that is, a non-Muslim (generally a Christian or Jew) who falls under Islamic rule and, as a price for maintaining their religion, accepts an inferior social standing. Simply put, the dhimmi must know his or her place and never rock the boat, including by seeking equal rights with Muslims. While this is the classic and...
  • Catholic Caucus" Daily Mass Readings, 01-13-18, OM, St. Hilary, Bishop and Doctor of the Church

    01/12/2018 9:55:40 PM PST · by Salvation · 34 replies ^ | 01-13-18 | Revised New American Bible
    January 13, 2018 Saturday of the First Week in Ordinary Time Reading 1 1 Sm 9:1-4, 17-19; 10:1 There was a stalwart man from Benjamin named Kish,who was the son of Abiel, son of Zeror,son of Becorath, son of Aphiah, a Benjaminite.He had a son named Saul, who was a handsome young man.There was no other child of Israel more handsome than Saul;he stood head and shoulders above the people. Now the asses of Saul's father, Kish, had wandered off.Kish said to his son Saul, "Take one of the servants with youand go out and hunt for the asses."Accordingly...
  • 5 Myths About Christianity

    01/12/2018 9:52:18 PM PST · by Oshkalaboomboom · 15 replies ^ | Jan 13, 2018 | Michael Foley
    As you may have gathered, many of the accusations against Christianity are based on the misconstruing of its teachings or its historical legacy. Fulton J. Sheen once observed that there are not “one hundred people in the United States who hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they wrongly perceive the Catholic Church to be.’ What Sheen said over fifty years ago about the perception of Catholicism in America can now be said about Christianity in much of Western society today. 1. Biblical patriarchy is little more than a mask for men’s will to power.Christian teaching...
  • The High Cost of Free Grace

    01/12/2018 6:16:20 PM PST · by metmom · 33 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1993 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    "In [Christ] we have redemption through His blood" (Eph. 1:7, emphasis added). Redeeming grace is free to us, but its cost to God is inestimable. Sin is not a serious issue to most people. Our culture flaunts and peddles it in countless forms. Even Christians who would never think of committing certain sins will often allow themselves to be entertained by them through television, movies, music, and other media. We sometimes flirt with sin but God hates it. The price He paid to redeem us from it speaks of the seriousness with which He views it. After all, we "were...
  • The Importance of Brotherly Love

    01/12/2018 6:15:54 PM PST · by metmom · 3 replies
    Grace To ^ | 1997 | John MacArthur, Grace Community Church
    “Let love of the brethren continue” (Hebrews 13:1). Genuine love among Christians is a testimony to the world, to ourselves, and to God. The importance of brotherly love extends well beyond the walls of your local church or fellowship hall. In John 13:35 Jesus says, “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” In effect, God has made love for one another the measuring stick by which the world can determine if our Christian profession is genuine. That’s why it’s so important that we have a selfless attitude and sincerely...
  • In his own words – Billy Graham on Martin Luther King, Jr.

    01/12/2018 5:33:17 PM PST · by GoldenState_Rose · 15 replies
    Billy Graham Library ^ | 2015 | Billy Graham
    Civil rights were very much in the forefront in America during the 1960s and early 1970s. As the issue unfolded, I sometimes found myself under fire from both sides, extreme conservatives castigating me for doing too much and extreme liberals blaming me for not doing enough. In reality, both groups tended to stand aloof from our evangelistic Crusades, but those people who actively supported us understood very well our commitment to doing what we could through our evangelism to end the blight of racism. Early on, Dr. King and I spoke about his method of using non-violent demonstrations to bring...
  • Climbing out of the Mire (Protestant/Evangelical Caucus and Devotional)

    01/12/2018 5:54:12 AM PST · by Gamecock · 2 replies
    Our souls cannot climb out of the mire of sin because they are dead. Salvation comes not to those who cry out, “Show me the way to heaven,” but to those who cry, “Take me there for I cannot.” Lest we see the sinner’s prayer as mere technique, we must remember that Christ raises the dead that they might walk. We do not mumble the magic words and then wait to die. Christianity is about spiritual growth as well. It is about work, the hard work of sanctification. Regeneration is monergistic, God’s work alone. Sanctification, the process by which we...
  • One in 12 Christians around the world is persecuted: 3,000 were killed (tr)

    01/11/2018 11:41:27 PM PST · by Oshkalaboomboom · 1 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | Jan 12, 2018 | DAILYMAIL.COM REPORTER
    One in 12 Christians around the world are persecuted for their faith and are the target of violent attacks including rape, a shocking report has found. According to a study by Open Doors USA, an organization that studies Christian persecution, 215 million Christians live in areas with high levels of persecution worldwide. The report also goes on to state that over 3,000 Christians were killed and nearly 800 churches were damaged in the last year. 'The most significant findings were that Christian women are among the most violated in the world, in maybe a way that we haven't seen before,'...
  • A.D. Kingdom and Empire

    01/11/2018 10:17:13 PM PST · by boatbums · 5 replies
    I just finished watching the first season of the series A.D. Kingdom and Empire on Netflix. It's a series produced by Roma Downey (from Touched by an Angel) and her husband Mark Burnett. It picks up right after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and His resurrection and goes into the beginnings of the Christian age and the Apostles and disciples of Jesus preaching the gospel under persecution from the Romans and the Jewish religious leaders. I'm curious if others have watched it and what you think.
  • Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 01-12-18

    01/11/2018 8:35:24 PM PST · by Salvation · 34 replies ^ | 01-12-18 | Revised New American Bible
    January 12, 2018 Friday of the First Week in Ordinary Time Reading 1 1 Sm 8:4-7, 10-22a All the elders of Israel came in a body to Samuel at Ramahand said to him, "Now that you are old,and your sons do not follow your example,appoint a king over us, as other nations have, to judge us." Samuel was displeased when they asked for a king to judge them.He prayed to the LORD, however, who said in answer:"Grant the people's every request.It is not you they reject, they are rejecting me as their king." Samuel delivered the message of the...