“Then they said to the woman, ‘Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we have heard for ourselves and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world'” (John 4:42 NKJV).
Specific beliefs and doctrines often have complex, far-reaching implications. For example the eastern doctrine of reincarnation, fundamental to Hinduism and related religions, is about much more than just multiple life experiences. If one is given a particular form of existence by the gods, it is obviously their will that the form be continued throughout that cycle of life. Devout Hindus believe it is an offense to the gods to attempt to change one’s caste or social status. If karma is earned and the gods are willing, one’s situation will be improved in his next life. Continue reading Inherited faith?
“Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved” (Philippians 4:1 NKJV).
There is an innate human tendency to measure one’s life by his or her accomplishments. This may take the form of awards, accumulated wealth, promotions, status, or a check-list of notable achievements. Architects may point to outstanding structures of their design; physicians and surgeons to lives saved, and lawyers to difficult cases or large settlements won. Continue reading Joy and crowns
“Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17 NKJV).
This summer and fall Nepal has been struggling to obtain essential goods, such as food, petroleum supplies (gasoline, diesel, and propane) and other necessities. Certain ethnic groups in the southern plains, near the Indian border, have protested the newly approved constitution by staging sit-ins at border crossing points. Nepal officials charge the Indian government with aiding the protestors by closing the border to trucks carrying needed supplies. Continue reading What Satan needs Christians to do
“Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against his Anointed . . . . He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision. Then he will speak to them in his wrath, and terrify them in his fury, saying, ‘As for me, I have set my King on Zion, my holy hill’” (Psalm 2:1-2, 4-6 NEV).
Nepal has a new constitution which contains language about religion that has concerned some. Though it proclaims freedom of religion for the population, it also states that the ancient traditions and culture of Nepal will be protected. Some believe that phrase will permit preferential treatment for the majority religion and possibly lead to persecution of Christianity and other minority faiths. Continue reading The laughter of heaven
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2 NKJV).
Three of us had left the car and started down the mountain-side (well, in Nepal it is “just” a hill) carrying four back-packs between us plus a heavy camera bag and a well-stuffed purse. Yes, one of us was my wife. Continue reading Burdens and burden-bearers
I am writing this Friday night (October 9) from Narayanghat in Chitwan District in southern Nepal. Brenda and I arrived in Chitwan Wednesday about 1:00 p.m. and went immediately to Kalikatar for the night.
This is the congregation on the other side of the river to which we have to walk about an hour, down the side of a mountain (well, we Alabamians would call it a mountain – it is maybe 1500 to 2,000 feet in elevation), cross the river by suspension foot bridge, then walk another 15 or 20 minutes up a lower hill to the village. Continue reading Observations
“Give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give unto the Lord the glory due to His name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness” (Psalm 29:1-2).
The apartment I live in while at Khulna Bible College in Bangladesh is on the third floor. From it I look out over neighboring buildings and security walls and am almost on the level of the tops of the many coconut palms near the campus. During the monsoon season these often are tossed wildly by strong winds which accompany the frequent rain. Those winds are particularly strong when the rain is from a low pressure system in the nearby Bay of Bengal. Continue reading The glory due his name
“Consecrate to Me all the first-born, whatever opens the womb among the Children of Israel, both of man and beast; it is Mine” (Exodus 13:2 NKJV).
“Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the Lord. You shall bring from your dwellings two wave loaves of two-tenths of an ephah. They shall be of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven. They are the firstfruits to the Lord” (Leviticus 23:16-17). Continue reading First fruits
“But she said to them, ‘Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. I went out full, and the LORD has brought me home again empty. Why do you call me Naomi, since the LORD has testified against me, and the Almighty has afflicted me?'” (Ruth 1:18-19 NKJV). Continue reading “Call me Mara”