Friday, April 28, 2006

Download this sermon

Here is a fabulous sermon by Doug Fields called "Preventing Heart Disease." I found out today that I need to preach on Sunday because our senior pastor is in the hospital. He should be fine, but please pray for him. Pray for me as I prepare. I think I am going to use several of the ideas from Doug Field's message.

Here's the link to download the zip file:

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

What should you study?

You scored as Philosophy. You should be a Philosophy major! Like the Philosopher, you are contemplative and you enjoy thinking about the purpose for humanity's existence.





























What is your Perfect Major? (PLEASE RATE ME!!<3)
created with

2 links

There's a good interview with the "emerging" thinker Dan Kimball here:

And . . .

More info on the fallacies of the Da Vinci Code here:

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Substitutionary Atonement

There's a growing group of theologians who are trying to deny the substitutionary atonement theory of Christ's death. This link via argues that the theory of substitution still merits the evangelical backing. Good reading:

Thursday, April 13, 2006

My Children's Message for Maunday Thursday - Bittersweet

Tonight we are celebrating the Last Supper and the commandment Jesus gave us to remember His life, death and resurrection through the communion meal.  I am hoping in the next 5 minutes we could look at a few aspects of that special meal Jesus had 2000 years ago.


The meal Jesus was having with his disciples was a very bitter-sweet time.  Bitter-sweet is a phrase we use for things that are very special but also very hard.  Usually the last day of school is bittersweet.  Everyone is excited to start summer vacation so that is very sweet but it’s also a little sad, or bitter, that you will not see many of your friends until the new school year.


Bittersweet also has to with certain kinds of food.  Tonight I brought something very bittersweet, dark chocolate.  Dark chocolate has a very strong taste.  This is a different kind of chocolate than what is usually put on candy bars.  Dark chocolate is very sweet, but it also makes your face pucker up because it also is very bitter.


Jesus “last supper” with his friends was bittersweet for a couple of reasons.


1.      Jesus was celebrating a holiday called Passover – Passover is a special holiday when we remember the time God used Moses to deliver the Hebrew people out of Egypt.  God even gave the Jewish people special instructions on how to remember and celebrate this holiday.  They were to remember two things – 1. the horrible slavery their ancestors experienced 2. And the amazing salvation God brought them.  These 2 memories made it a very bitter-sweet meal.

2.      The second reason this meal was bittersweet was because of the things Jesus told his disciples.  The first being that this was going to be his last night with them before he would be handed over and killed on the cross.  This was a very sad and bitter thing that Jesus had to share with his disciples.  The second thing he shared with them was that one day He would eat with them again in heaven.  This was a very sweet thing to share.


So tonight as we celebrate the “Last Supper” I hope we can remember that it is a very special meal, yet very bittersweet.  It’s okay to feel sad when we remember the death of Jesus on the cross.  But it’s also important to be happy to know that Jesus died so that he could be with us forever and ever.  Then we will have lots of meals with Jesus.


Jesus told us that every time we take communion together we remember what he has done and that he is coming again.


Would you pray with me?  Dear Jesus thank you for allowing us to remember bittersweet moments in your life.  Thank you for dying for us.  Thank you for the promise that you are coming back again.  Thank you for our church and that we can celebrate this night together.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Purgatorio highlight

I know many of you already check out the purgatorio blog, but here's another good one for the dispensational crowd . . .

The Da Vinci Code Questioned

With the upcoming "Da Vinci Code" movie coming out, I thought I would post a link to an article that was in the Christianity Today June 2004. I read "The Da Vinci Code" a few months ago. I thought it was a real page turner for the first half of the book or so. I thought the ending was pretty poor, and I thought his research was limited at best. Many scholars have refuted Dan Brown's claims, but there are still a few people out there that believe his hocus pocus conspiracy theories.

Hopefully, this article from Christianity Today will ease some fears and help people to trust the claims from the Holy Bible . . . here's the link:

Conspiracy Theory fiction has sold millions of copies of books for a long time . . . just remember there's a difference between fiction and Truth. Keep thinking . . .

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Jason McElwain - basketball legend

You must watch this video about high school student Jason McElwain . . .

You can see it via this link

Here's a few articles to go with it:

Meeting the President:

An aricle on autism:

More videos available on ESPN motion

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

this past weekend

I went up to Sumner, Iowa this past weekend to visit my grandma on her 81st birthday March 31.
My wife and I drove up with my sister Heather (the pic of the pretty girl sitting in the car) and we had a great time chatting on the road trip. Visiting Grandma was very hard because I remember her as being so invincible. Now she has aged significantly through several broken bones, TIAs, and a few other health issues. She is still a tough lady, but it's hard to see her so old. I still remember Grandma breaking up fights between her grandchildren, scolding her wild dog into submission, and being the General of all family gatherings. On April 1, part of the family took Grandma out for dinner at her favorite spot, Red Lobster. We took some pics to remember the day. The cute couple is my parents.

Monday, April 03, 2006

good books for thought

I am currently reading the book "The Presbyterian Controversy" which reflects on the end of the 19th Century and up till the 1930s. It looks at some of the key individuals involved in the controversy often labeld the liberal/fundamentalist debates. It is very facinating and offers some very good thoughts for people discussing the Emergent Church and for me in particular in teh discussion of a possible revision of my denomination's statement of faith.
I just finished the book called "Understaning Fundamentalism and Evangangelicalism" that focuses on the same time period from a few different angles. I think anyone talking about changing (for or against) the theological or missional statements of contemporary Christianity should read these church history books. We can learn a lot from the road that has already been traveled by our forefathers. The next church history book I will read is called "Reforming Fundamentalism," if anyone is interested.

Mark Driscoll's thoughts on emergent

Good reading

Sunday, April 02, 2006


I was preparing a lesson on "Truth" for my junior high students. I tried to google a picture of the Wesleyan Quadrilateral as it should be used, and I could not find it. So I created my own diagram. I agree with John Wesley (as described more recently by Albert Outler) that the best way to find truth is through these different means. I agree with many Wesleyans and other Christians that Scripture is the foremost lens we use to seek Truth. God's reveleation is our ultimate authority.

This diagram is meant to represent lenses/tools for the discovery of Truth. If I wanted to observe the flight path of a bald eagle, I would look through the lenses of binoculars. If I want to discover truth, I will look through the lenses of Scripture, Reason, Tradition and Experience. All of these lenses can offer a piece of truth (though reason, tradition, and experience can prove faulty). I do believe in absolute truth, but I believe only God can fathom and qualify which truths are truly absolute. Regardless, we can know truth and the primary method is through the Bible inpired by the all-knowing One. The other lenses of experience, reason, and tradition are valuable tools for the search for truth, but only secondary and subject to the prime means of truth-gathering, The Holy Bible.

I love this verse from Deuteronomy 29:29

“The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.”

This verse shows me three things about Truth

1. God is the source of Truth

2. Truth is knowable

3. Only God knows all things

Word of caution: Just because I believe the Bible is the ultimate authority for Truth does not mean I think anything can be justified by any ol' bible verse. It is possible to misinterpret Scripture. It is possible to be led astray by false teachers and the devil himself. That's why the other facets of the quadrilateral are useful. We need to be faithful and humble truth seekers. Often the best context for securing truth is in a large community of like-minded Christ-followers who have a passion for God's Kingdom.