The foundations of the Building are only as strong as the foundations of the Builders

My mother past away last month and since then we’ve had a number of occasions to reflect on her passion for creation – the literal intepretation of the Book of Genesis as it relates the six-day creation of the heavens and the earth.

My mother past away last month and since then we’ve had a number of occasions to reflect on her passion for creation – the literal intepretation of the Book of Genesis as it relates to the six-day creation of the heavens and the earth.

All her stuff in the basement which she’d gather together to put on exhibits at churches or in classes. At her funeral where we setup these things so that visitors could know about her passion. And a creation seminar weekend at Cannington Baptist Church where gifted speaker Calvin Smith taught us many fascinating truths of science regarding the history of the earth. The weekend was lovingly dedicated to Donna in light of her passion for creation. We wholeheartedly thank them for their thoughtfulness and kindness towards us.

Because of all this exposure, though, I’ve really been hit a number of times just how serious it is for believers to doubt the creation account in Genesis. Doubt and skepticism are healthy but only when they lead to uncovering the truth.

Each creation organization that I’m aware of has the same reason for doing what they do: They believe that to contradict Genesis, being the inspired Word of God, is to erode the very foundation of the totality of the faith. Creation Ministries International, for example, entitle their writing on this issue “Genesis—the seedbed of all Christian doctrine.”

According to stats, most Christian youth who go to secular post-secondary institutions will lose their faith because of the onslaught of ideas contradictory to their faith. If their faith can’t stand against apparent flaws, then what good is the faith? Who can blame them for leaving their faith behind. At best, who can blame them for compartmentalizing or halfheartedly living out their faith.

But there are answers. Answers In Genesis is another organization dedicated to teaching the truths of the creation account. Their article regarding the need for teaching creation is entitled “Creation: Why it matters.

Creation absolutely matters. God has Genesis right. He really did create the heavens and the earth in six days. If he said so and he really didn’t, then what else is really true in the bible? Your entire faith’s foundation begins at Genesis 1:1:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

What’s it like to read the entire bible? You’ll probably never find out on this blog.

And it’s only in that precious moment you’ll realize the fear and awe and majesty of the Holy God speaking to you, revealing your self you never considered.

So, I’m sure I foreshadowed this in one of my earlier lay-it-all-out-there posts, but I don’t think I’ll be continuing my “What’s it like to read the entire bible?” series.

The reason is because my posts were becoming synopses. Just summaries of all that happened.

There are so many brilliant things in the bible, but these summaries can’t capture those moments of brilliance amongst the details of the context.

You won’t understand unless you’ve really read the entire thing cover-to-cover but my summarizing was a travesty.

It was a shame because when you do read it thoroughly, on your own, you come to realize what Paul said two-thousand years ago,

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)

It really is more than words on a page.

God works on you when you’re reading the Word.

And it’s only in that precious moment you’ll realize the fear and awe and majesty of the Holy God speaking to you, revealing your self you never considered.

G.K. Chesterton

Anybody might say, “Very few men are really Manly.” Nobody would say, “Very few whales are really whaley.”

Mr. Blatchford says that there was not a Fall but a gradual rise. But the very word “rise” implies that you know toward what you are rising. Unless there is a standard you cannot tell whether you are rising or falling. But the main point is that the Fall like every other large path of Christianity is embodied in the common language talked on the top of an omnibus. Anybody might say, “Very few men are really Manly.” Nobody would say, “Very few whales are really whaley.”

Just a taste of the wit of G.K. Chesterton.

May I recommend an Introduction to the Book of Job?

I know I mentioned it earlier but it may have gotten buried and gone unnoticed for some.

Enjoy.

Extraordinary biblical accounts and what is still being discovered even after the world has lost interest

Approach everything with a healthy dose of skepticism while leaving open the possibility that perhaps you might be coming up against the god of the universe and he just might be telling us the truth.

Earlier, I asked you to check out 6000years.org. I came across some videos about four extraordinary accounts in the old testament.

The interesting thing about these videos is, while they reference stories and news items that were big news twenty years ago, the videos themselves are up-to-date and using new info. One of videos has footage of Google Earth to help support the case at hand. Each video is quite well made to boot and the quality is a credit to their authors.

Noah’s Ark – The Bible says that around 4,400 years ago God sent a world-wide flood upon the earth and had a man named Noah build a large boat (Ark) to save his family and selected animals from the Flood.  It says that after the Flood, the Ark landed on the mountains of Urartu (Ararat), which is modern day Eastern Turkey.  If this is true then we should be able to find evidence of the remains of such a boat (both in History and archaeology).  That is, if the Ark remains haven’t been buried by mud and/or volcanic ash over the centuries, or frozen in ice at the top of Mt. Ararat, or if there never was a Noah’s Ark and its not up there at all!
Watch the Video

Sodom & Gomorrah – The Scriptures tell us that God completely destroyed the cities of Sodom & Gomorrah (located in modern day Israel) by raining down “fire and brimstone” upon them.  Now brimstone means sulphur.  So, if this really happened, we should be able to find some badly burnt ruins in Israel – ruins with sulphur embedded in the ruins.  If it really happened, then we should find remains which closely resemble the Bible narrative.
Watch the Video

Red Sea Crossing – The Bible tells us that around 3,500 years ago, Moses parted the Red Sea and led the Israelites out of Egypt across to the other side.  Then, when the Egyptian chariots crossed after them in pursuit, God caused the wheels to come off the chariots and the waters to quickly recede upon them, drowning all Pharaoh’s army.  If this really happened, we should be able to find the remains of these chariots on the seabed.  If we can find the location of the crossing, there should be chariot remains on the sea bed.
Watch the Video

Mt Sinai – The Bible tells us that after Moses brought the Israelites across the Red Sea, the Angel of God led them to a mountain named Mt. Sinai (a.k.a Mt. Nebo) where God descended on the mountain “in fire”.  It says, “the smoke billowed up from the mountain like smoke from a furnace”.  Sounds pretty hot, doesn’t it?  So if this really happened, we should be able to find a mountain in that area with a burnt and blackened top.
Watch the Video

The world has long since lost interest in these stories when they were making big splashes in the media, but believers know there’s something in these accounts that can support and verify the integrity, accuracy and true of God’s Word.

Approach everything with a healthy dose of skepticism while leaving open the possibility that perhaps you might be coming up against the god of the universe and he just might be telling us the truth.

Genesis 1 (What’s it like to read the entire bible? How about we find out?)

Trust God’s Word. Trust God’s Word not because it says so, but because it says so and because it welcomes any and all skepticism with a voracious appetite.

I’m a few chapters into Genesis already but I’ve been finding it difficult to write about what I’ve already read. I had read Genesis 1 and actually had a huge piece written up but it wasn’t really what I wanted it to be. I went real long and in-depth about the importance of the first verse, about cosmologies, creation and evolution, and about approaching Genesis from another angle (which has produced some novel ideas from others). It didn’t feel right, though.

If I’m going to write about reading the bible, I don’t want to get caught up in detailed explanations, theories, wild-goose chases or other tangents. I really want to show readers the best parts, the parts that most show the bible as the solid truth that it is and that most reflect glory upon God.

So let me just get this whole ball rolling…

  1. Genesis 1:1 Is there any more simple, pragmatic way the book could open than this? “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” It’s the perfect introduction to history. There was a beginning to all of this and God was there creating all of it and us.
  2. Origins of the Universe. Look up Russel Humphreys and read up on Starlight and Time. His theory may not stand the test of time but others will take inspiration from his novel approach to the text of Genesis 1.
  3. Creation/Evolution. It may seem to you like there’s no evidence for creation. Mainstream media will rarely report anything to do with creationism, less still in a flattering light, so how would we know? It’s up to every believer to be familiar with the massive field of creationism. Many thousands of believers have spent their lives understanding the Genesis account of creation and going about showing that it is true. Answers in Genesis is an organization which I find provides solid, well-reasoned, rational answers to many of the questions we have about what mainstream science is telling us and what the bible is telling us. Their Get Answers section may help you if you, like many, ask why a biblical creation even matters.
  4. God created you and I, male and female, to have not only amazing relationships with each other, but to know our creator personally. God wants to know you and He wants you to know Him. You just wait. You’re going to learn incredible details about the character of God just by reading His Word.

The bible is jam-packed with goodness but I feel I would detract from it by writing too much so I’ll stop here and give you these points and links to ponder. Let me just say one more thing that came up just now.

As we begin reading the bible I do want to give you one bit of advice. Google is your friend. Wikipedia is your friend. Firefox is your friend. Googlepedia is your friend. Neither of these things has a Christian bent. In fact, Wikipedia can easily lead a weak Christian astray. But let me tell you what just happened while I googled the wiki article for Answers in Genesis, where I knew I was likely to find not only positive views but also criticisms.

What I found was a very unflattering portion of the wiki article entitled Controversy over interview with Richard Dawkins. It painted a very unsavoury picture of Answers in Genesis. Had I stopped right there, I would probably have dismissed Answers in Genesis forever after. But you know there’s always two sides to a story. And you know you have a brain for  a reason. So I went to the Answers in Genesis website and searched for “dawkins response” and their own search results gave me Skeptics choke on Frog, a response to critics about the controversy of the interview.

I hope the lesson is clear. You really need to have more than one side of a story before you can form your own positions.

What’s it like to read the entire bible?

What’s it like to read the entire bible? It is like sight to a once blind man.

It is like sight to a once blind man.

I have read the bible twice. Once with a side-by-side King James version and Amplified version, and once again with a Holman Christian Standard Bible.

Think you can’t commit to reading the entire bible? You might surprise yourself. Hey, I did it reading 4 pages per day. How much of a slacker am I?? But I did it. :)

Modern Christianity focuses on the Bible’s New Testament. Christianity’s history is in this section so, naturally, a lot of focus is put there. The Old Testament, on the other hand, is like hidden treasure. You will never fully appreciate what Christ did for you on the cross until you have read the OT. I really hope you consider reading the bible cover to cover.

When I was going through the bible, I didn’t commit to prayer before or after reading a particular section. I often found, though, that a given portion was so heart-rending, or so convicting, or so enlightening, or so beautiful, that I was compelled to give praise to God or to ask forgiveness or to ask for help – just from reading words on a page.

One thing you’ll begin to understand is what other Christians have recited time and again from scripture, “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

Words on a page, indeed.

I started this blog with a purpose in mind. It wasn’t to run off at the mouth about my fancies (although I reserve the right to do so!). Instead, it has been my purpose for some time to get myself back into the Word and to blog as I read my way through the bible again. Firstly, I think it will help me get back into the bible as I combine my faith side with my tech side. Secondly, I hope others read along with me and let me know what they think of what they’re reading (and I hope they kick my butt when I slack off).

So, I hope to begin a series of posts that will see us begin with Genesis and read through til Revelation. I’m still thinking of how to structure a post so there’s something constructive to read and to respond to.

Whatever happens, I know I’ll be delighted to be reading things I’ve forgotten, I’ll be learning new things, and hopefully I’ll be shedding new light for others as we go through.

So, what’s it really like to read the entire bible? How about we find out?

Welcome to Selah.ca

And when we know the truth I think we will see that God is given all the glory because He has done something more incredible and more beautiful than we could have ever thought possible.

This is the second post of my blog and I want to highlight the importance of the first.

The first post in this blog is special. It’s a dedication of sorts. None of my own words are in that post and its purpose is to glorify God and to publish again how His Son taught us to live. It sets the tone that will remain the background to all that follows and, ever and anon, the foreground.

I consider myself a conservative, fundamental Christian but the posts to follow will, without doubt, attract resentment, anger, correction, arguments, and all manner of backlash, from those who also think themselves conservative and even from those whom the former would call liberal.

Regardless, know always that I want the truth.

In days past, I put myself in the world’s line of fire saying to myself that if God’s Word is worth believing than God’s Word will prove itself. In many places I accepted the heat of the skepticism about the bible. I went looking for answers and consistently found rational satisfaction in the answers I uncovered and was able to respond with.

I learned a number of things through all of this:

  • I learned God loves all of us
  • I learned I can read my bible and google anything of concern to me or someone else
  • I learned I can find someone else who has had the same question and has published answers or references someone else who has
  • I learned the Bible can stand up for itself and stand up to intense analysis and criticism and does so with grace and compassion
  • I learned we have built up a religion, rules, and rituals, where there is no need for any
  • I learned we have done this because God is beyond full understanding and we have tried to understand him on our own terms and within our own limits
  • I learned God loves all of us even when we put Him on trial
  • I learned God is amazing beyond all words, poems, songs, theories and philosophies
  • I learned that to consider what God has begun with us, His unending, unerring, unrelenting story through us, and His plan to redeem each of us to Himself, us who didn’t deserve at all – I learned that to consider all of this is to know that you have not even begun to know Him.
  • I learned God loves all of us in spite of everything we have done to spurn Him
  • I learned, therefore, to approach Him as a child, discovering all things as new.

So, as God wills for all that may follow, know that if what I say is controversial, outlandish, outrageous or heretical, I want only the truth.

I want the truth.

I want to glorify God.

I want to show you the bible that declares itself without error.

I want the truth.

And when we know the truth I think we will see that God is given all the glory because He has done something more incredible and more beautiful than we could have ever thought possible.