Posts by Jim Elliff (Page 26)

Posts by Jim Elliff (Page 26)

Invincible?

When I was caught for eating a bit of icing from one of the cupcakes planned for the Fifth Grade party, my principal was incensed. "What’s that on your shoulders?" she demanded. I didn’t have a clue what "that" was. She asked again, but finally had to inform me that it was a head with a brain inside. She was sure that any one with a brain encased in a head resting on his shoulders would have better sense than…

Mother Teresa Leona

James, the youth: If a person shows all the outward signs of being a Christian, should we assume the person is truly a Christian? The elderly but wiser Mr. Brockton: Not at all. The evidence for being a Christian will undoubtedly be seen in every true Christian, but the appearance of the evidence may deceive you. You must start at the starting place in your observations and be careful not to mistake the effect for the means. James: But suppose…

October 31st, 1517 Wittenburg, Germany

It was October 31st, 1517 in Wittenburg, Germany. Martin grasped a hammer and a long piece of paper covered with his writing. He walked out into the street and straight over to the castle church door. It was here that community messages were often posted. Martin nailed his 95 points of discussion on the door. He only wanted to lay out his newly discovered views of the Bible to other church leaders in the Medieval Catholic church. He thought he…

A Thief in the Night

A friend of mine slept through a robbery in his own home. His wife wasn’t so comatose. In fact, when the man entered their bedroom, she immediately began chasing him down the hall. With this lady on his tail, he didn’t steal much but trouble. Meanwhile, back in the sack, my friend snored away, totally oblivious to the whole ordeal. The day of the Lord will also come like a thief in the night. Are you ready? Now brothers, about…

The Way to God

Years ago, two cousins were visiting near the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia. Although they were told by their parents not to venture into the swamp, they disobeyed. As the sun was setting, they decided to head home in hopes that their absence would not be detected. Neither boy made it back. When they were found dead a few days later, a note was attached to one of the boys. It read, “I thought I knew the way, but I was…

Caught in Our Shame: Comments on the Recent Barna Report

The recent Barna report on evangelical beliefs in mainline churches is almost too excruciating to read. In the report, statistics concerning the 12 largest denominations are tallied. Barna polled 6,038 adults with random telephone interviews nationwide. Tim Ellsworth of the Baptist Press summarized the findings. I have included the pertinent data: The study’s findings identify an alarmingly high number of church members whose beliefs fall far short of orthodox Christianity. For example, 41 percent of all adults surveyed believed in…

The World Trade Center and Our First Acts

The wilting sadness of the World Trade Center tragedy—the dead bodies in the dust, the people jumping out of windows, the angst of the traumatized, the weary searching, the yearning eyes of family members, the apparent senselessness of it all—leave disturbing imprints on our American soul. What are we to do? First, we should pity all who do not know Christ. We will all die, but not all will die in such a tragic manner. Some who perished are now…

Entertainment Evangelism, a Response to a News Reporter

Hello, this is B____ L_____, religion reporter for the W_____ E____. I am writing an analysis story on a trend we see hear of "entertainment evangelism." D____ C____ of Current Thoughts and Trends magazine said you would be a good person to talk with. In a couple of weeks, a group called "Impact World Tours" affiliated with Youth with a Mission will have a crusade here. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the group but they will put on…

You Don’t Look So Good

When humorist Erma Bombeck saw her new passport photo, she gasped, “Anyone who looks like that is too sick to travel!” Getting a good look at yourself can be deflating to say the least. It might surprise you to know that when you look in the mirror in your bathroom you don’t really see yourself. You see the exact opposite of yourself. Your left ear is on the right side and your right ear is on the left side. Spiritually,…

If God is Good, Why Do So Many Bad Things Happen?

My visit to the small apartment of an oriental couple in the Chicago suburbs was disturbing. Here was a man who had innocently gone to work one day, but was caught in the crossfire of a gunfight. He was paralyzed from the neck down. What do you say to a man like that? “If God is all-powerful and is also good, why is there pain in the world?” The question is among the most difficult to answer, especially when we…

Is God Angry Anymore?

When I was in public high school, we had to read part of a famous sermon called Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, by Jonathan Edwards. He graphically pictured sinners as spiders dangling by a thread over the fire of Hell. He also asserted that God is angrier at this moment with some who are living than with others who are already in Hell. Do you believe that? Is God angry? I don’t believe my teacher thought so.…

Knowing You’re In

There was a troubled look on the student’s face as I finished my talk. “I believe that Christ is who He says He is,” he stated, “but I just don’t know if I am really a Christian. What if I’m deceiving myself?” The question is a reasonable. After all, God put up a huge billboard in 1 Corinthians 6:9 that says, “DO NOT BE DECEIVED!” So, how do you know you’re a Christian? First be sure that you understand the…