DEBATE WITH MUSLIM
There is another scheduled debate with a muslim on paltalk (www.paltalk.com). It will occur on Saturday, Oct. 26th, 2002, 3pm PST. The topic will be "Is Jesus God?". More details to follow. It seems the Muslims constantly want to debate this in their attacks upon the true God.
I had almost set up another debate with another Muslim on the same topic, but when I mentioned that I would probably be quoting the Quran, he backed out. It is alright for the Muslims to attack Jesus and the Bible, but when I want to quote the Quran, then all bets are off. I cannot help but wonder what this Muslim was afraid of.
Kevin Harris is a friend of mine from the Dallas, Fort Worth area of Texas. He is a Christian radio personality who has some wonderful connections in the Christian world. Kevin has developed a burden for the atheists in Seattle, a town with one of the highest atheist concentrations of any city in America. We have been talking about this and I am very interested in doing a CARM conference and/or debate on atheism in the Seattle area. The tentative title of the conference is "The false gospel of Atheism."
So, if you live in the Seattle area and have the means to connect me with a church or organization that would like to host a seminar on "The False Gospel of Atheism," then please email me at email@example.com.
SHORT BIBLE LESSON - THE BIBLE
What is the Bible? Is it inspired or man-made, inerrant or faulty, myth or history? For some, the Bible is a wondrous book given by God to men. For others, the Bible is a collection of myths used to control people's thinking. Whatever the opinion, it goes without saying that the Bible is perhaps the singularly most influential book in history.
The Bible is a collection of 66 books written by about 40 authors, over about 1600 years, on three continents, in three languages. It contains history, poetry, fiction, doctrine, narration, and prophecy. It is historically accurate, contains incredible claims of God's work and words, has prophecy, and it all points to one man: Jesus.
The Jews wrote and assembled the Old Testament and the Christians wrote and assembled the New. Both testaments contain teaching, prophecies, and doctrine. But, it is the New Testament where we see Jesus as the fulfillment of the Old Testament. In fact, the Bible is about Jesus. "You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is these that bear witness of Me," (John 5:39). I always tell people when they come up to something difficult, "Put Jesus into it and see if it makes sense." Usually, the light comes on and things then make sense. Take for example, the offering of Isaac by Abraham and notice the similarities between Isaac and Jesus: Only begotten Son, Isaac in Genesis 22:2; Jesus in John 3:16. Offered on a mountain (hill) Gen. 22:2 and Matt. 21:10. Took donkey to place of sacrifice, Gen. 22:3 and Matt. 21:2-11. Two men went with him, Gen. 22:3 Mark 15:27; Luke 23:33. Three day journey - Jesus: three days in the grave, Gen. 22:4 and Luke 24:13-21. Son carried wood on his back up hill, Gen. 22:6 John 19:17. God will provide for Himself the lamb, Gen. 22:8 and John 1:29. Son was offered on the wood, Gen. 22:9 and Luke 23:33. Ram caught in thicket of thorns, Gen. 22:13 and Jesus crown of thorns John 19:2. The comparison continues, but you can clearly see that Jesus is reflected in the Old Testament which explains why Isaac was offered. He was a prophetic typology pointing to Jesus as the true sacrifice. Okay, so we now see that the Bible is about Jesus. This is fine intellectually, but what does it mean to us as Christians on a spiritual level?
As Christians, the Bible is not simply a book of stories and moral truths. It is the very word of God, inspired, inerrant, true, and infallible. It is God breathed (2 Tim. 3:16). But, it is also more than that. It is the truth of God that resonates in the souls of those in whom the Holy Spirit indwells. It is the means and the measure of our lives made real by God's indwelling. It is the revelation of God's will for us and the world. It is the promise of God to deliver the believers. It is, in reality, the loving and true words of our God. In this sense, it is alive.
Because of the God-breathed nature of the Bible, we Christians need to inhale its goodness on a regular basis. It is no different than our need to breathe. We must constantly take in air in order to live. Likewise, we must constantly take in God's word in order to live spiritually and to grow in our love and obedience to God. We cannot ignore His word and expect to grow in grace and life. We cannot set His word aside and expect to walk in goodness and truth. We cannot forget about God's word and expect to walk in holiness. On the contrary, in order to grow in our relationship with God, we must have the word of God in us. In order to walk in goodness and truth, we must study His word so it can guide us. In order to live in holiness, we must live in God's word. There is no other way. We need His word. We need His truth. We need His food for our souls. It is the cross of Christ that makes all this possible in us. The cross is where the love and truth of God was most perfectly manifested.
God's word, when deeply studied, reveals two things: God and yourself. It reveals to you the sovereign and holy God of the universe who loves you and desires your salvation and presence. But, it also reveals the sin in you. It is like a mirror that enables you to see who you really are as it reflects yourself back to you compared to Jesus, the one who sacrificed Himself for us so that we might become more like Him as we study His holy word.
So, do you meditate on God's word? Do you make it a part of your life? Do you desire it like medicine, like food, like air? Do you experience its goodness as it washes over your soul and cleanses your heart and mind from the filth of the world? If not, repent, open the Bible, pray for understanding and truth, and then read. Do it regularly. You need it.
STILL AIMING FOR FULLTIME
Please remember that the goal is to go full time, get an office, a staff, produce a magazine, do radio, and write more books. It can be done and it is only a matter of time. There is so much that needs to be accomplished. There is so much error out there. Christians all over the place need the documentation, the logic, the answers to be able to stand firm in their faith. After all, Christianity is under heavy attack from other religions, from society, and, of course, in secular school. Statistically, I have heard that something like 80% of the Christians who enter college leave it having lost their faith. This is something I want to stop. Information, logic, truth, prayer, and God's word are what is needed.
If you want to support CARM, please go to http://www.carm.org/goods/donations.htm and you will find different ways to help. If possible, if any of you want to commit for a year to help out, please email me and let me know, firstname.lastname@example.org.
GOT A SUGGESTION FOR CARM OR THIS NEWSLETTER?
If you have suggestions for what you would like to see in this newsletter or for CARM, please return e-mail me and let me know.
VERSE OF THE WEEK.
2 Peter 1: 5-9
"Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge; 6and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness; 7and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. 8For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins," (NASB).
Matt Slick, your missionary to the Internet.