man to man to God
week of June 12, 2011
weekly newsletter of Path
Of Life Ministries.
mission is to lead men to Jesus Christ and provide opportunity for
Christian men to grow in their faith and minister to others.
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didn’t give us a spirit that is timid but one that is
powerful, loving, and self-controlled.”
2 Timothy 1:7
indeed, is probably one of [God's] motives for creating a
dangerous world -- a world in which moral issues really come to
the point. He sees... that courage is not simply one of the
virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which
means, at the point of highest reality. A chastity or honesty, or
mercy, which yields to danger will be chaste or honest or merciful
only on conditions. Pilate was merciful till it became risky.”
C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), The Screwtape Letters, Macmillan,
1944, p. 148
CHRISTIANS MARTYRED ANNUALLY, SAYS OFFICIAL
to Italian sociologist Massimo Introvigne, another Christian dies
for his faith every five minutes. CatholicCulture.org reports that
Introvigne's figures do not include the victims of civil wars, or
wars between nations, but only the people put to death because
they are Christians. He estimates 105,000 Christians are killed
every year. Introvigne told the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe on Combating Intolerance and Discrimination
against Christians, "[I]f it is not recognized that the
persecution against Christians is the first worldwide emergency
with regard to religious discrimination and violence, dialogue
between religions will only produce wonderful symposia but no
concrete results." .... Read this in full at
AMERICANS STILL BELIEVE IN GOD; NONBELIEF RISES
than 9 in 10 Americans still say they believe in God, a new poll
shows. While belief in God remains strong in the US, the Gallup
poll also found that nonbelief has risen from 1% in 1944 to 7%
today. And the percentage of Americans who affirm their belief in
God has decreased slightly from 96% in 1944 to 92% today. Notably,
those least likely to believe in God are 18- to 29-year-olds. Only
84% agreed that they believe in God compared to 94% of older
Americans.... Read this in full at
UP IF YOU WANT TO LIVE
makes people act in unloving ways toward those they once loved the
most? Does a marriage license also provide a legal right to
mistreat those closest to us, to treat each other and our children
worse than any other person we know, or to micromanage changes
only God is qualified to make? Marriage, to survive the satisfying
yet challenging thing it is, must be playful and kind, or it
cannot be healthy. It cannot remain sacred if it is not healthy,
and it will surely not be full of the life you want and need if it
does not remain playful. The lighthearted side of life, the part
that gives us balance and makes us happy, like the children we are
meant to become [if we are to enter the kingdom of heaven; this
lighthearted side] must infuse our attitudes, our emotions, and
our deepest life struggles. We have the power to destroy those we
love. The trick is not to. In other words, quit acting like
everything you say is a revelation from God.
to appreciate the positive power of opposites and how beautiful
your differences can be. This power, first and foremost, is love.
By it we can create a life worth celebrating, and when we do, the
joy of our hearts will provide for others a glimpse now and then
of what heaven must be. Marriage is also mystery, and it is part
of a larger mystery. Union emotionally, spiritually, physically,
and intellectually with a soul who is a polar opposite is a
reflection of the mysterious differences and unity we experience
with God. In our failings, the differences between us are a wide
chasm, yet with love these same differences become the source of
great celebration and fulfillment in life. To betray the joyful
fountain that sustains you is to destroy part of yourself.
and those you love are the main characters in the story of your
life. Whether yours is a story worth telling depends on how you
live it, on how well you love each other.”
Wes Yoder in
Bond of Brothers: Connecting with Other Men Beyond Work, Weather,
STATUS DENIED OVER JESUS ANSWER
Chinese migrant seeking refugee status in Canada on the grounds
that he faced persecution back home for his Christian beliefs was
repeatedly asked by the Immigration and Refugee Board last year to
describe what Jesus was "like as a person."
man's inability to attribute human characteristics to Jesus formed
part of the board's decision to deny his refugee claim.
details are contained in a recent Federal Court ruling, which
dismissed the man's application for a judicial review of the
board's decision but did agree that the board's line of
questioning about Jesus was "somewhat awkward."
assessing Wang's refugee claim, board adjudicator Daniel
Mc-Sweeney asked Wang: "So tell me about Jesus as a person.
What was he like?" He did not accept answers such as "the
son of God" and "he is my saviour," telling Wang
they sounded too much memorized creed rather than personal
experience.... Read this in full at
MURRAY STRIVES TO IGNITE EXCITEMENT FOR THE WORD OF GOD
Murray is on a mission to get Canadians excited about engaging
with the Word of God.... Read this in full at
AMERICANS OFTEN DON’T SUPPORT SPECIFICALLY RELIGIOUS
new study shows only a minority of religious donors support
specifically religious work through non-profit organizations. The
study also shows Black donors are twice as likely as White donors
to support higher education. And the causes people choose to
support are often quite dependent on their political views.
findings are from Heart of the Donor, an in-depth study
commissioned by Russ Reid Company of Pasadena, California, and
conducted by Grey Matter Research & Consulting of Phoenix,
of the reports about the causes people give money to classify that
giving by type of organization, but many organizations do more
than one type of work,” explained Ron Sellers, president of
Grey Matter Research. “A poverty relief organization may
also advocate for public policy, while a medical research
organization may have an arm that focuses on education. It can
also be difficult to classify some organizations – is a
Catholic school classified as religion, or education? So in this
study we asked donors what kinds of causes they support, not what
kinds of organizations – and we let donors decide these
definitions according to how they perceive the work being done.”
.... Read this in full at
“What inspires you to give? New survey has answers”
Patrick Morley, PhD
most men think money will do what it can't and that God can't do
what He will. A man cannot love both God and money (Matthew 6:24).
A man cannot love both God and the world (1 John 2:15). Money is
God's chief competitor, and you must choose between the two.
is a hand of providence. Not the only hand, but by money God
directs the affairs of men. By giving it to us or taking it away,
God directs us into His best plan and purpose for our lives. Men
must feed their families, so He uses their need for money to
direct them into work that "tends the culture."
exhorting us to share with the church and the poor, and to not
make money a god, the Bible gives us great freedom over money and
possessions. While all things are permissible, however, not all
things will leave us happy. Here are three ideas to help you think
through your own "theology of money and possessions."
don't own things you do not use on a regular basis. For seven
years we owned a weekend lake house just outside of town.
Virtually every Friday afternoon we would "kidnap" our
children and spend the weekend doing country things. When our
daughter turned eleven, though, her in-town friends became very
important to her. We only went to the lake house once that year,
so we decided to sell the property. There was nothing wrong with
owning the property; there was no requirement to sell the
property; there was no special virtue to own or not own the
property. It did, however, keep us lean and responsive to God's
leading in our lives.
idea is not for everyone. Nor does it make one man more spiritual
than another. However, it may free a man up tremendously. Why?
Everything you and I own requires maintenance, worry, insurance,
money, and represents an opportunity cost.
don't own things just because you can. A neighbor about a mile
down the shore owned a completely restored mahogany 1957 Chris
Craft Sportsman inboard boat. I mentioned that I would be
interested if he ever wanted to sell. Six months later he did, and
we agreed upon what I considered a fair price. But a test drive
revealed the boat needed several maintenance items.
took nearly a month to have the repairs made. During that time I
continued to pray about selling our boat to buy the antique Chris
Craft. One day the question came to mind, "Why not deny
yourself this boat?" Since I had been thinking about this
boat for three years, that thought came as quite a jolt. However,
I had also been wondering if I should buy it just because I could.
Over several days I came to the conclusion that, for me, it would
be a good lesson in self-restraint and personal discipline to
forego the purchase. On the other hand, there were other financial
purchases I was considering at the time with which I went ahead
and felt just fine.
the more you give away the happier you will be. Because Man in the
Mirror is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, we receive
financial gifts from donors. Over the years I have developed
beautiful friendships with many of these donors and have been able
to observe their lives. Here is an iron law: The greater
proportion of a man's income he gives, the happier he is. I
believe this is well borne out by Scripture.
some men, it's almost as though the more money they have, the more
afraid they are that it's going to run out. If that has been the
concern of yours, the Bible makes it clear that if you’re
generous toward others, God will be generous toward you.
S. LEWIS’S AENEID
the early 1960s, the Christian Century published a series of
answers by prominent authors to the question, "What books did
most to shape your vocational attitude and your philosophy of
life?" The June 6, 1962, issue featured advice columnist Ann
Landers, who provided an impressively erudite list, and C. S.
list holds much interest, but few surprises. George MacDonald's
Phantastes and G. K. Chesterton's The Everlasting Man, the two
Christian books that captivated Lewis at the height of his
skeptical period, receive top billing, followed closely by the
great English poems of vocation, Herbert's The Temple and
Wordsworth's The Prelude. Other books on the list are The
Consolation of Philosophy, Boswell's Life of Johnson, Charles
Williams's Descent into Hell, Arthur Balfour's Theism and Humanism
and Rudolf Otto's The Idea of the Holy (a sure defense against
mistaking Aslan for a tame lion).
all but one of the books Lewis mentions are Christian. The one
exception, the one permanent debt he records to a pre-Christian
book, is Virgil's Aeneid, the epic poem in which the Trojan
Aeneas, lacerated by war and Juno's wrath, travels to Italy under
divine summons and lays the foundation of Rome. Long before Lewis
became a Christian, the Aeneid acted upon him almost as a
Christian epic; long after he became a Christian, the Aeneid
remained central to his understanding of vocation. Lewis's debt to
the Aeneid, already evident from his discussion of the epic in A
Preface to Paradise Lost, is now more clear than ever, thanks to
the publication this spring by Yale University Press of Lewis's
"lost" Aeneid translation, skillfully reconstructed by
classicist A. T. Reyes.... Read this in full at
WAYS WE'RE FAILING FATHERS IN THE CHURCH
to researchers C. Kirk Hadaway and P.L. Marler, “Church
attendance is increasingly a private matter, and it is
correspondingly easier for each of us to maintain an idealized
image of ourselves as regular attenders when in fact we may only
manage to attend church two or three times a month at the most.”
Most men don’t even bother to rationalize their lack of
attendance in church.
was the buzz two decades ago that men didn’t go to church as
often or in as great a number as women. Bill Hybels even set his
church on a course to attract young males, knowing that
(hopefully) vibrant, beautiful, and “seeking” young
women would follow — thus attracting more males! I don’t
know what time has “revealed” for them on this issue.
don’t men go to church? The “Religion of Masculinity,”
as defined by David Murrow in his book Why Men Hate Church
suggests that many men see Christianity as being incongruous with
their manhood. Maybe so, but the church is probably at least
partially to blame for this.... Read this in full at
HOSTAGE BY THEIR OPINIONS
Harriet Braiker, in her book The Disease to Please, [shares my]
conclusion that people pleasing is actually a form of addiction.
She identifies four characteristic symptoms of Pleasers, and I
identified with all of them: (1) a tendency to take criticism
personally, (2) a constant fear of rejection from those around
them, (3) difficulty in expressing their true feelings, and (4)
reluctance to say no even when it's clear they should. Any of
these sound familiar to you?
grow out of this dangerous disease, we've got to understand that
people pleasing is more of a spiritual problem than a relational
problem. Though most people would try to accept the need to please
others as a normal part of life, we have to embrace that people
pleasing is a form of idolatry. We have to be weird enough not to
care what people think of who we are and how we live. Living for
others' opinions is putting people ahead of God.
you afraid of what people will think if you don't go with the
flow? Do you find yourself doing things you know you shouldn't
because you want to be popular, liked, or approved? Do you feel
the pressure to conform to a certain lifestyle, image, or role
when you're around certain people you admire? There's only one
solution to this problem, one antidote to the poison of pleasing.
The fear of God is the only cure for the fear of people.
of it this way. If you ride the biggest roller coaster in the
world, the kids' ride at the county fair won't scare you. If you
live through a hurricane and a tornado, a spring rain won't
intimidate you. And when you truly know the God of the universe,
people's opinions will no longer hold you hostage.”
Groeschel in Weird: Because Normal Isn't Working
THAT'S NOT IN THE BIBLE
legend Mike Ditka was giving a news conference one day after being
fired as the coach of the Chicago Bears when he decided to quote
the Bible. “Scripture tells you that all things shall pass,”
a choked-up Ditka said after leading his team to only five wins
during the previous season. “This, too, shall pass.”
fumbled his biblical citation, though. The phrase “This,
too, shall pass” doesn’t appear in the Bible. Ditka
was quoting a phantom scripture that sounds like it belongs in the
Bible, but look closer and it’s not there.
biblical blunder is as common as preachers delivering long-winded
public prayers. The Bible may be the most revered book in America,
but it’s also one of the most misquoted. Politicians,
motivational speakers, coaches - all types of people - quote
passages that actually have no place in the Bible, religious
scholars say.... Read this in full at
TRESSEL SHOULD MAKE US RETHINK SPORTS EVANGELIZATION
that Jim Tressel is out as the coach of the mighty Ohio State
University football team, resigning under the weight of rampant
NCAA violations by his players and program, it’s tempting to
bring the customary snark and cynicism.
after all, is a coach who came on strong with the Christian
faith-and-character message, a man honored by the prominent
Christian ministry group Athletes in Action just one year ago with
induction into AIA’s “Hall of Faith” — an
honor meant to recognize recipients’ faith, leadership,
character, and integrity.
kept a prayer-request box on his desk, preached the importance of
a moral and spiritual foundation to his players and staff, and
presented an image of himself that prompted admirers to call him
“senatorial” or, to quote the title of the 2009 book
about him, “More Than a Coach.”
the hypocrisy card is an easy play now for those who are skeptical
about lavishly paid athletic champions being held up as poster men
for faith and values, and about the Christian religiosity that has
become such a conspicuous part of big-time spectator sports....
Read this in full at
DETAILS BLESSED LIFE ROOTED IN FAITH
Tebow is a 23-year-old second-year, second-string quarterback on a
so-so NFL team. So who's going to buy his memoirs? What's to
remember? Only ...
The play-by-play of his life from conception (his missionary dad,
Bob, prayed for a son and promised God to raise him to preach) to
birth (a "miracle" tale told in a Super Bowl
High school gridiron statistics that made college recruiters pant
(he had 80 scholarship offers). An ESPN documentary called him
"The Chosen One" when he was just 17.
A Heisman trophy and college championships at the University of
Florida, where Tebow is already immortalized in a bronze statue on
His selection in the first round of last year's NFL draft by the
Denver Broncos, along with a GQ profile that praised his physique
in prose that read like a romance novel.
throughout Tebow's new memoir, "Through My Eyes," is the
bone-deep religious side of the evangelical young player who
writes Bible verses beneath the play codes on his wristbands, just
as he once inscribed them in his eye black for his college games.
book, written with co-author Nathan Whitaker, starts each chapter
with a Bible verse and is laced as much with "glory to God"
as it is with pages of grit-and-grunt details of Tebow's trademark
punishing workouts. He trains relentlessly, determined to confound
everyone who has questioned whether he can make it as an NFL
quarterback.... Read this in full at
FORWARD IN YOUR RACE
Apostle Paul often compared the Christian life to a race. We know
he lived in Ephesus for three years, and during the time he lived
there, he probably witnessed Olympic-style competitions in a
stadium that held as many as 100,000 people.
been a casual jogger for years, but I’ve never won a race.
One reason I’ve never won a race is that I’ve never
actually entered a race. I’ve never been in a 5K, or any
other race – until now.... Read this in full at
SIGNATURE IN THE CELL
of the most vexing and long-standing mysteries of science is the
origin of life: that is, how did the building blocks of matter
(atoms and molecules) lead to the building block of life: the
biological cell? As recently as 2008, Richard Dawkins (who
believes that everything is the product of evolutionary processes)
confessed, “No one knows.”
until the nineteenth century, leading scientists generally assumed
that an organizing Intelligence was involved. But after the
popularization of Darwinian theory, origin-of-life researchers
began narrowing their investigative scope to unintelligent causes.
a time, explaining life as the unplanned effect of natural forces
went rather swimmingly. Then, in 1953, James Watson and Francis
Crick unraveled the architecture of DNA, the now famous double
helix “molecule of life.” Although their discovery
solved one thorny mystery of science—how biological
information is stored—it led to another, even deeper,
mystery: its source.... Read this in full at
ADAM, NO EVE, NO GOSPEL
as we know it grew from pagan, occult, and biblical roots. The
story of creation, told in Genesis and elaborated in the New
Testament, pictures a rational intelligence creating an orderly
and predictable cosmos. Without that predictability in the natural
world, neither Newton nor Einstein would have been possible. There
are times, however, when a careful reading of the natural world
seems to conflict with our reading of Scripture.... Read this in
POLL: MILLENNIAL GENERATION COMMITTED TO AVAILABILITY, CONFLICTED
ABOUT MORALITY OF ABORTION
age 18-29 years old strongly support the availability of abortions
in their local community, despite being conflicted over its
morality, a new study finds.
Millennials, Abortion, and Religion Survey, conducted by Public
Religion Research Institute released June 9 at the Brookings
Institution, is one of the largest public opinion surveys on
abortion and religion ever conducted. The survey also finds that
there are large generational differences on two issues that have
often been linked in political discourse: abortion and same-sex
embody the decoupling of the so-called ‘values voter'
agenda," said Dr. Robert P. Jones, CEO of Public Religion
Research Institute. "On the issue of abortion, Millennials
mirror their parents' views, with about 6-in-10 saying abortion
should be legal in all or most cases. But they are much more
supportive than their parents of allowing gay and lesbian couples
to marry. This suggests that we may see these issues moving on
separate tracks in the future." .... Read this in full at
LORD is good to those who hope in him, to the persont who seeks
him. It’s good to wait in silence for the LORD’s
Lamentations 3:25-26 (CEB)
tongues nor faith nor prophecy nor knowledge nor martyrdom nor
philanthropy, but *love* is the Christian's mark of distinction.”
fight for our planet, physical and spiritual, a fight of cosmic
proportions, is not a vague matter of the future; it has already
started. The forces of evil have begun their decisive offensive.
You can feel their pressure, yet your screens and publications are
full of prescribed smiles and raised glasses. What is the joy
perceptive and challenging words were uttered by one of the great
Christians of the 20th century in the heart of a commencement
address at Harvard University. Alexander Solzhenitsyn was in exile
in America after suffering years in Communist prison camps for
criticizing Stalin. He had found faith in the "Gulag
Archipelago," the Soviet Union's cruel prison system which
devoured alive millions of individuals who opposed or circumvented
the atheistic regime.... Read this in full at
FAITH: GETTING RELIGION IN THE NEWSROOM
Allison Pond and Michael De Groote
heaven wasn’t easy. But in early 2005, ABC News producer Rob
Wallace knew he had the perfect subject for a Barbara Walters
television special. His idea was to examine the effect of belief
in heaven on the way people lived their lives. But when Wallace
pitched the idea, his colleagues at the network resisted because
there is, of course, no footage of the afterlife. Wallace pushed
back. “Listen, you’ve got to do this because if you
want to talk about what drives people, this belief is what drives
people,” he said.
a veteran news producer, prevailed, and a Barbara Walters special
titled “Heaven: Where Is It? How Do We Get There?” was
broadcast on Dec. 20, 2005. It brought ABC News its highest
ratings in four years. “Everyone was pleasantly surprised,”
Wallace said. “We were tapping into an audience that usually
doesn’t come to us.”
has successfully produced several stories that focused directly on
belief. But for various reasons the American mainstream media,
especially major outlets and national networks, are sometimes
reluctant to cover religion. It’s hard to quantify, but it’s
one reason faith elements of major news stories are often missed
2002 survey (the most recent data available) of 1,149 randomly
selected journalists conducted by the Indiana University found
that 34 percent of journalists say they have no religious
affiliation, compared with 13 percent among the general population
who said the same in a 2002 Pew Research Center survey.... Read
this in full at
THINGS THE BELIEF BLOG LEARNED IN ITS FIRST YEAR
Belief Blog has just marked its first birthday. After publishing
1,840 posts and sifting through 452,603 comments (OK, we may have
missed one or two) the Belief Blog feels older than its 12 months
would suggest. But it also feels wiser, having followed the faith
angles of big news stories, commissioned lots of commentary and,
yes, paid attention to all those reader comments for a solid year.
things we've learned:
Every big news story has a faith angle. Even the ordeal of 33
Chilean miners trapped underground for more than two months. Even
the attempted assassination of Arizona congresswoman Gabby
Giffords. Even March Madness. Even – well, you get the
Atheists are the most fervent commenters on matters religious.
People are still intensely curious about the Bible, its meaning
and its origins.... Read this in full at
WORSHIP SAYS ABOUT US
thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may
dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze
upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple’
(Psalm 27:4). David's devotion to worship oozes from this verse.
More than anything, David wanted to bask in the beauty of God's
presence. He was enamored with God's glory. The ‘one thing’
David longs for is intimacy with God and a chance to worship his
worship was such a high priority for David, he bristled whenever
God wasn't given the honor he deserved. What stirred David to take
on Goliath was not the threat he posed to Israel but the giant's
blatant disrespect for [God]. David asked angrily, ‘Who is
this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of
the living God?’ (1 Samuel 17:26). God's glory and
reputation were at stake, and David felt compelled to take action.
Upon confronting the Terminator from Gath, David shouted, ‘This
day the Lord will deliver you into my hand ... that all the earth
may know that there is a God in Israel’ (1 Samuel 17:46).
You can always discern your priorities, for better or worse, by
what angers you or stirs you, what frustrates you and what excites
you. Honoring God was the utmost priority for David.
was convinced that there was absolutely no place he could go and
no circumstance he could encounter that could put him out of God's
reach... So it's never a question of how present God seems to us,
but how present we are to God. Worship increases our
awareness of God's presence... Are you experiencing an
ever-increasing awareness of God's presence in your life? Are you
noticing increased delight in the attributes of God? Is worship
changing you into the image of Christ?”
Rory Noland in
Worship on Earth as It Is in Heaven: Exploring Worship as a
CHURCH BECOMES OWNER OF HISTORIC MOVIE HOUSE
Christian Post reports that one church is mixing Christianity and
culture with the acquisition of a 1930s-style movie theater in
Washington, D.C. National Community Church acquired the theater in
the Barrack’s Row area of Capitol Hill as a compliment to
Ebenezers, the churh's coffee house. The coffee house is the
largest on Capitol Hill and has been operating for more than five
years. “We like doing ministry in marketplace environments
similar to how Jesus hung out at the well,” said Mark
Batterson, who is the lead pastor of National Community Church.
“Coffee houses are like postmodern wells and movie theaters
are like the Aeropagus, marketplace of ideas, of American culture
today.” The theater will play selected first-run,
independent, and family films. “Why have a building that’s
only used a couple times a week? I’m not sure that’s
the best stewardship. So, we will have a movie house that will
operate seven days a week,” Batterson said.... Read this in
J. Adrian Stanley
Same-sex marriage. Politics. Culture at large. For years, James
Dobson was a barking guard dog stridently defending "traditional
family values" on all these issues. Quick to temper, and slow
to apologize, Dobson never had to be asked twice about what he
that's important to remember, because Focus on the Family's
current president, Jim Daly, is no James Dobson. While the founder
of the right-wing evangelical organization was predictable in his
views, Daly is full of surprises. When you least expect it, he'll
compliment President Barack Obama. Or scold Christian couples.
get to all that in a minute, but first there's something you need
to know. The [Colorado Springs] Independent is involved in a
community-based partnership with Focus. No, hell has not frozen
over. Here's what happened: Our publisher, John Weiss, realized
that there was at least one issue on which Focus and the Indy can
agree: We want all kids to grow up in a loving home.... Read this
in full at
CHURCH IN MARYLAND TO CONVERT TO ROMAN CATHOLIC PARISH
Episcopal church in Maryland — including its pastor —
has decided to convert to Catholicism, the first in the United
States to make the move under new Vatican rules meant to appeal to
Luke’s, a small, tight-knit congregation in Bladensburg with
a majority of members from Africa and the Caribbean, will be
allowed to hold onto its Anglican traditions even as it comes
under the authority of the Roman Catholic Church. That will
include being led by its married pastor, the Rev. Mark Lewis, and
retaining much of its liturgy.
of the church said Monday that they were not leaving the Episcopal
Church because of the ordination of gays and women — issues
that have bitterly divided the American wing of the Anglican
Church and coincided with stepped-up efforts by the Vatican to
reach out to Anglicans. Instead, church members said, they were
satisfying their longing for a clear religious authority by
welcoming the leadership of Pope Benedict XVI.... Read this in
Brad A. Greenberg
Jewish culture, customs vary greatly—but not regarding
circumcision. The ritual, which forms the covenant between infant
Jewish boys and God, is essentially the same everywhere: Eight
days after the boy is born, his father or a mohel slices away his
foreskin in a ceremony typically accompanied by a white pillow and
a few uncomfortable onlookers.
custom is as old as Judaism itself. Commanded by God to a
99-year-old Abraham, circumcision was to signify fidelity to the
Lord. It has been a central part of Jewish tradition ever since,
so much so that even Yom Kippur — the holiest of holidays —
doesn't delay the circumcision of an infant.
the practice has its critics. Judaism's small but vocal
anti-circumcision movement insists that pain and bodily
modification aren't necessary for forming a child's covenant with
of Judaism, the anti-circumcision movement began as a loose union
of "intactivists" in 1960s and '70s San Francisco. It
has since coalesced into groups like the National Organization for
the Restoration of Men — and they are now looking for some
legislative leverage.... Read this in full at
CIRCUMCISION: THE TARGET IS RELIGION, NOT JEWS
Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein
centuries, circumcision kept Jews apart from members of other
faiths. Jews practiced it as a core religious obligation, but
outside of Muslim countries, no one else around them did. More
recently, circumcision is emerging as a force to accomplish the
opposite. Efforts in San Francisco and Santa Monica to criminalize
the circumcision of minors will bring Jews and non-Jews closer
together, because the target is not Jews, but religious belief
itself.... Read this in full at
“Santa Monica anti-circumcision backer drops ballot measure
“Evangelicals join Jews against circumcision ban”
DO CHRISTIAN GROUPS IN CHINA PUT AUTHORITIES ON RED ALERT?
Shouwang Church and other Protestant Christian groups have a
potentially powerful mix of Calvinist ideology, social activism,
and influence among China's educated elite — even members of
the ruling Communist party.... Read this in full at
FRIARS DIE ON SAME DAY AT AGE 92
twin brothers Julian and Adrian Riester, who spent 65 years
wearing the identical brown robes of the Franciscans, have died in
Florida at age 92. The brothers were rarely apart and in their 20s
they joined the Franciscan order together, The Buffalo (N.Y.) News
reported. The twins died June 1, just hours apart, at St. Anthony
Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla. Julian died Wednesday morning,
followed by Adrian that evening.... Read this in full at
should have figured it out sooner. It's the shampoo I use in the
shower. When I wash my hair, the shampoo runs down my whole body.
Printed very clearly on the shampoo label it reads, "FOR
EXTRA VOLUME AND BODY."
have gotten rid of THAT shampoo and I am going to start using Dawn
dish detergent. Its label reads, "DISSOLVES FAT THAT IS
OTHERWISE DIFFICULT TO REMOVE."
solved! It sure pays to read the label!
may not always offer supernatural deliverance from earth’s
problems, but it always offers supernatural use for them. It is
likely that Peter, who was delivered from prison, learned less
than Paul, who stayed there.”
L. Thomas Holdcroft
should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to grow angry.
This is because an angry person doesn’t produce God’s
righteousness.” James 1:19-20 (CEB)
WEEK'S HYMN: LET SONGS OF PRAISES FILL THE SKY
Thomas Cotterill, 1819
L. Herman Ilse, 1910
songs of praises fill the sky:
our ascended Lord,
down His Spirit from on high
to His Word.
hail the day of Pentecost,
coming of the Holy Ghost!
Spirit by His heav’nly breath
new life within;
quickens sinners from the death
trespasses and sin.
hail the day of Pentecost,
coming of the Holy Ghost!
things of Christ the Spirit takes
shows them unto men;
fallen soul His temple makes,
image stamps again.
hail the day of Pentecost,
coming of the Holy Ghost!
Holy Spirit, from above
Thy celestial fire;
and with flames of zeal and love
hearts and tongues inspire.
this our day of Pentecost,
coming of the Holy Ghost!
puts us at risk of getting involved in God's conditions. Be slow
to pray. Praying most often doesn't get us what we want but what
God wants, something quite at variance with what we conceive to be
in our best interests.”
FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS TODAY
the following list as your daily prayer guide. Think of a brother
or situation that applies and lift them up in prayer.
agreeing in prayer with you for God’s blessings to overtake
God and man
Be in God’s will
Raises or bonuses
Checks in the mail
Gifts & surprises
Bills decrease while blessings increase
all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou
shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God" (Deut.
[As you travel on business or vacation, let me know
if you'd like us to add you to our prayer
chain to pray for your safety and spiritual effectiveness.
I'll add your name to the list for the time you'll be
you looking for something or do you have something to sell? Let me
know and I'll put it in this newsletter.
Book your next
vacation with us!
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YOUR FAVORITE WEBSITES
us what sites you find enjoyable and why.
links to websites are provided as a service, and do not imply
endorsement by this ministry.
(BTW: whenever the URLs in
this newsletter are too long to turn into links on your e-mail
program, just copy the entire URL (two lines or more) and paste it
into a temporary email message. Then delete the return in the
middle of it and copy it again. Then paste it into your web
browser and hit enter.)
number of red lights you continue to encounter will always be in
direct correlation with how late you are already running.
Frank Coleman, Editor
for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!
is a periodic newsletter of announcements, news, recommendations,
articles, and other information helpful to men in our spiritual
growth. Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!
CONNECTIONS Team offers a variety of activities for men to
interact with other men on our journey of faith in Christ
together. Large group, small group, and one-to-one events
encourage relationship building and spiritual strengthening that
result in maximizing the potential we all have in Christ.
Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, firstname.lastname@example.org
if you'd like to participate in a men's discipleship program.
Path Of Life Ministries is located in Chicago, IL.
our website at: http://www.pathoflifeministries.org/
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