Thursday, September 29, 2005

The Anglican 100-Minute Bible

Yahoo news reports:

A Church of England vicar was on Wednesday unveiling his self-styled "100-Minute Bible", an ultra-condensed edition of the Christian holy book which claims to neatly summarise every teaching from the Creation to the Revelation. Publishers the 100-Minute Press say the book has been written for those who want to know more about Christianity but who do not have the time to read the original in full.

"This is a book for adults and has been written in a style to encourage readers to keep turning the pages, but without resorting to any literary gimmicks," said Len Budd from the publishing firm.

Yeah, keep turning the pages right past Revelation 22:19
and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

Literary gimmicks? What kind of dufus publicist uses the words "literary gimmicks" when he's speaking about the Bible. I guess the kind that publishes a "100 minute" Bible.

The Anglicans should just pack it up and move to Rome now that they see fit to add and subtract from God's Word.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Prayer of Jabez decimating China churches

BEIJING - The Prayer of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson, one of the best-selling non-fiction books in the past ten years, has gutted China's house church movement, say observers.

"Chinese Christians used to sacrifice everything for Christ. Now they only want God to bless them," says one Chinese elder who has served five prison terms for planting churches. He and others say China's Christians have "grown soft with navel-gazing" and have lost their tolerance for persecution. Copies of The Prayer of Jabez began circulating in China in 2001. Many Christians began "talking endlessly about God expanding their borders and keeping them free from pain," says one Chinese pastor whose weekly prayer meeting shrunk to half its previous size.

"Instead of asking God to strengthen the Chinese church they pray for personal fulfillment. They ignore all the Bible except Jabez," he says.

Sun Young, 24, says he and other Christians are tired of hearing only about "the way of the cross."

"Jabez changed my life. I pray every morning, 'God, let your hand be with me and keep me from harm,'" he says.

Unlike his parents, he does not want to suffer for Christ, but rather hopes to flourish in his personal giftings. "Jabez showed us a new way," he says.

According to 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 Jabez was "more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, 'I gave birth to him in pain.' Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, 'Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.' And God granted his request."

As the Jabez book spreads to China's interior, the house church movement, once a model of Christian endurance, is bracing for even greater loss of members.•

Not only is the Christian Church spiritually rotting in America, our infection spreads out to corrupt healthy ones in distant lands. The more I read about persecuted Christians in China or elsewhere being tortured, burned, raped, sold into slavery (all for even wearing a cross) the more I find spiritual breakthrough and revival in those communities. Very similar to the early Christian church and subsequent revivals. I constantly wonder, is America's material wealth a blessing or a curse? I also recall no spiritual awakenings (of note) or growth has come in times of prosperity. Only through severe persecution. Which gives weight to the opinion that our wealth will be judgmentnt against us and we (the American Church) will be found wonting. Lest God grant us repentance. Help us Lord, I pray.

America needs a revival like China's. The more prosperity American Christians receive from God the more uncaring for their Lord's kingdom they become. The more needy they become. The more unfulfilled, discontent, and ungrateful. They become... well, like the culture.

Christians (in America) have become quite irrelevant to the unbelieving world and it could be argued effectively, less respected than any other Christian community there has been. True, there aren't any public calls for violence against Christians, we're not persecuted unto death. Could that be because we've capitulated with the world? Christians in times past sooner died a horrible (God honoring) martyr's death than to have Christ's enemies gloat. Nowadays Christians walk hand in hand with pornographers, adulterers, gamblers, and thieves. In their business practices, marketing, and even worship (see Rome) all for the glory of God don't forget!

Sounds to me like worthless servants. Matthew 25: 14-30

God have mercy on us, at times I can scarce tell the difference between the sheep and the goats.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Getting goats to bleat like sheep

The modern-day evangelical (believing the myth of a Christian society BEFORE Christ returns, political action commitee, as-long-as-sinners-act-good-they-are-good kind that is) thinks he can make goats (unbelievers) bleat like sheep (believers).

"Modern-day evangelical" might not be the proper label when I am referring to the Christians that seek to "change the culture" through legislative processes (think James Dobson, Chuck Colson, Tim LaHaye, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson). Ironically, in the very same manner that liberals are accustomed to doing. This un-biblical movement is what Steve Camp has called the "Evangelical Co-Belligerence" (ECB).

Christian, look at America. "Morals, Judeo-Christian principles," and banning same-sex marriage or homosexuality never saved anyone. Christian, the unrepentant are doing there job. Their wills being held captive by their father - the Devil. They diligently obey their master. Who is it you are obeying? Why do you seek to make Christ's enemies behave like Christ's friends? Do you believe you can make a Christian society without sinners turning from wickedness to righteousness? Why is the battle cry, "Family Values" and not "...unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." (Luke 13:3)

Listen to Christ speaking to the Church in Pergamum in Revelation 2-16:

Therefore repent. If not, I will come to you soon and war against them with the sword of my mouth.

Take heed brethren these words from Jesus are to you.

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