To the church of Thyatira, Jesus warned of the consequences of a hardworking church that falls into sexual immorality and idolatry. This warning needs to be headed today but also the promise to the overcomer.
Wednesday, August 24, 2016
A Pew research poll released this morning surveys people who have left church who now profess to have lost faith in God. Many, I'm willing to bet, were raised more as cultural Christians (a large number admitted to never having really believed). The ones that stood out are those who stated that rational thought or science cancel out religion. I tend to disagree with that idea.
Several months ago, I had a chance conversation with someone who stated that he left church because no one could answer his questions. So, I responded out of genuine curiosity, "Okay, like what?"
He stood up straight and in a strong defiant tone made a statement rather than asking a question. "Miracles violate all laws of science!" He obviously thought that this would end all discussion. His tone indicated that he would brook no argument to his position.
Undeterred, I looked at him, "So, you don't have a question but a wall. Miracles, by definition, are violations of the known laws of science. If they fit in our understanding of science, they wouldn't be miracles." I'm not sure but I'm willing to bet that he had heard something similar before our conversation. He got very huffy and even more defiant. He made it clear that he wanted no more of this kind of talk. I think he was hoping that I would fumble and stumble or maybe try to use weak science or rewrite the Biblical account to explain miracles like some do. I merely stated my logical belief.
There are a lot of people who are striving to demonstrate a fictitious divide between faith and science. Vocal atheists including Bill Nye state their belief plainly that no one who believes in God can be a scientist. Personally, I find that statement to be completely irrational as I see the hand of a Creator through science. I believe that some of that is simply that the idea of the miraculous, even when there is evidence to prove that it occurred, breaks their safe world.
I am a logical, rational man with a background in physics. Of all the scientific disciplines, apart from healings, physics seems to be the one most often on the receiving end of these alleged violations. Walking on water? Crazy, right? What about that whole dividing the Red Sea thing? Liquid water doesn't behave that way. That's why they're miracles. In each of those two cases, water changed its properties. In one case, a liquid supports the weight of not only Jesus but Peter as well. The surface area of the human foot is no where near sufficient to create buoyancy. Water splitting and becoming walls on either side of the gap? Don't even get me started on why that just doesn't work.
I chose these cases because they are dramatic example of something that could not be easily dismissed. No attempt to alter the Biblical account has ever been able to measure up to each detail of the event. My scientific background says that these could not have happened. However, that same science points me to the Creator. Logically, if there is a Creator, He can exert His power over the universe he created.
Yes, there is an element of faith involved. However, it is my experience that science also involves an element of faith. Sometimes, the faith isn't in the actual data but in the interpretation of that data. For the man I mentioned earlier, he was hung up on how he saw the world and couldn't put it aside. He had faith in his interpretation of the world around him and anything that contradicted that could not be accepted. In truth, I didn't continue the discussion because I knew that he wouldn't be receptive to a word I had to say.
Do miracles make rational sense? That depends. It is rational if you accept the reality of a Creator and put your faith in Him. However, for a purely naturalistic world view, anything that violates the known laws of the universe can be a tough hurdle to leap. Miracles definitely break all the rules.
Please, when engaging in these discussions, please don't assume the other is a fool who only needs to come around to your point of view. Debating science versus religion won't get you far. A little piece of wisdom from my father, "A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still."
Remember the mission. It's about Jesus and His work on the cross. Let the faith and belief in miracles take care of itself. It worked with me. I was well versed in science when I came to Christ at the age of twenty-four. Trust the work of the Holy Spirit. He is very good at His job.
Monday, August 22, 2016
Monday, August 15, 2016
The church of Ephesus and the church of Smyrna were the first two of the seven. To each, Jesus spoke different words. One He encouraged and warned, the other exhorted and corrected. These words spoke by Christ resonate to us now. What does it mean to lose our first love? Will the persecution come?
Monday, August 8, 2016
Monday, August 1, 2016
We pray for revival all the time but it never seems to come. Preachers and commentators all proclaim that the only hope for our nation and the world is another Great Awakening but the heavens seem as brass. Why don't we see revival? Are we actually ready for it? Do we even know what we're asking for?