Christianity Is Not Blind or Ignorant, Think Critically

Tuesday, March 31, 2009 | Labels: , , , , , , | |

The enemy would have modern Christians believe faith in Jesus Christ is both illogical and ignorant.  Satan knows faith is the most powerful defense the modern Christian has against him, and he will stop at nothing to vanquish it.  Those who can be shaken by the pseudo-intellectual lies crafted by the enemy will find themselves subject to his influence.

Ultimately, the validity of the Christian faith lies on one historical period, the birth and life of Jesus Christ.  There is substantial legal-historical proof for both the virgin birth and correlation of fulfilled prophecy in the life of Jesus Christ.  It is far to substantial to go into depth on a simple post.  Recommended readings for this are both Lee Strobel's "The Case For Christ", Josh McDowells "The New Evidence That Demands a Verdict" and "More Than a Carpenter".  I would also recommend reading counter-points and critical perspectives to gain a complete understanding.

Evidences of both the miraculous birth and life of Jesus Christ are established in historical records beyond those who partook in the writing of the Bible, even the Koran confirms the virgin birth of Jesus Christ took place 500 years before the birth of Muhammad(*1). 

A student of philosophy wrote a great article that concluded the following points (understanding of historical evidences and contexts is assumed, otherwise these points will appear assumed - it is recommended you dig into the historical evidences yourself to verify these points):
Four “core facts” which even the skeptics admit ...

a) Jesus was a real man, who lived and then died by crucifixion. Check out your history: Crucifixion was a cruel (but effective) method of death by torture. Victims died not from actual wounds but by suffocation, from the weight of their bodies hanging from outstretched arms. The Roman soldiers attending crucifixions were experienced in their work and could tell who was dead and who wasn’t.

b) The disciples saw something and they believed it was the risen Jesus. (The theory of mass hallucination doesn’t fly because, as psychology will tell us, it simply doesn’t happen.)

c) Their lives were totally transformed, even to the point of death. Now, at first glance, this may not seem much to us who have heard of things like the Jim Jones cult, Koresh, and Heaven’s Gate—but we aren’t talking about a case of mass suicide here. This is a group of (at least) eleven men, who went out to different parts of the world, devoted to the same cause, and who all separately suffered torture and met their deaths rather than renounce what they believed was the risen Jesus. Doesn’t anyone think that at least ONE of those men, if they had been privy to some sort of scam, would have spoken up rather than face martyrdom?

d) Lastly, one Saul of Tarsus, bitter enemy of the followers of Christ, is converted—HE believes he sees the risen Jesus, and it transforms his life to the point that he devotes his life to preaching, suffering, and dying for Christ.
For those well versed in the history of this era, these established logical deductions make a case for rational belief in both the life and ressurrection of Jesus Christ.  

There are those who have suppressed these evidences for the benefit of their self-indulgent philosophies of life.  Jesus Christ promoted both love and compassion for one another.  His philosophy is of non-violence and community.  Yet, his philosophy is looked at in outrage by those who do not believe.  Instead of looking at the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, they look to disprove his existence by looking at those who believe in him.  This is fundamentally flawed, as Jesus himself said no good could come from the evil creatures we are.

"Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good--except God alone." - Luke 18:19

The beauty of Christ's teachings is that he bridges our evil lives with that of the goodness of God.  We can indeed be good, but only through a relationship with God.  Jesus allowed man to truly be good by giving him communion through God with his life.  Goodness, in this sense, is not what the world deems good, but what God deems good.  Since men are fundamentally evil, they will fail at doing the good God want's them to do.  This is merely common sense.  Looking to Christians without looking at Jesus Christ as the ultimate verification of Christianity is fundamentally flawed. 

Craig Chamberlin

Obama and Congress, The Delegated Messiahs

Wednesday, March 25, 2009 | Labels: , , , , , | |

As America braced herself for the inevitable economic recession.  She found herself in desperate need of a savior.  Instead of turning to the one true savior, they turned to the power and wisdom of man.  Obama and congress' intentions are, in respect to their burden of expectations, well intended, but their solutions are blind.  The world, in it's lust for a man-made savior, will be surprised at the outcome.  Those who do not turn to man alone for a solution will not be.  

Obama and congress, who believe they can bring about the salvation of our current societal corruption are setting themselves up for disappointment.  Those who embrace man-made government as a feasible solution to any form of corruption will find their thirsts unquenched.  This truth translates across both ends of the political aisle.

A society is never fixed by it's goverment, a government is established by it's society.  If the people become corrupt, the government becomes reflective of that corruption.  We decieve ourselves when we blame those of particular parties for societal or government corruption.
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."  - Galatians 6:7-8
For years America has sown her seeds in the flesh.  She has moved from the spirit of God to the spirit of lust, greed and materialism.  In the process, her soul was corrupted, and in turn, her government was corrupted.  It is purely human that in the years of her reaping the corruption she has sown, her blame is shifted to those in power.

We in America have none to blame but ourselves.  Our love for money.  Our love for sex.  Our love for lust, our drive for living a life at the expense of the life of others.  In our pride, we have elevated ourselves higher than our brothers and sisters.  In our elevation, we now fall without a love for truth.

Pain is much more devastating when there is no true understanding of the source.  In a bitter attempt to abolish the spiritual pain of America.  We turn our faces to those in power in hopes that they can save us from the seeds we have sown.  Although those in power genuinely believe they can fix the corruption through more government presence - they are bandaging the symptoms of the issue, not curing the source.

Government expansion as a solution to a corrupt society is equivalent to placing a bandaid on an infected wound.  The bandaid may stop the bleeding, but if it goes untreated, the infection will continue to spread throughout the body.  The spirit of America is dying, and unless she goes back to the one who can cleanse the soul of corruption, Jesus Christ, the man made bandages we create merely postpone the inevitable.

Craig Chamberlin

Teach Not Fools, But Encourage The Wise

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 | Labels: , , , , , , , , | |

The modern Christian movement has placed much effort in the rebuke of fools.  Fools, in this sense, is not a derogatory term but are those who ignore the truths of reality in the realm of cause and consequence to perpetuate their lifestyle.  Instead, their wisdom is found in the world of sensual pleasure and self-exalted philosophy.  

Ravi Zacharias once said about our generation, "How do you reach a generation that listens with its eyes and thinks with its feelings?"

I merit this challenge as the greatest demand of the Christians of my generation.  Fools are those who think with their feelings.  The moods of man are highly fluctuational depending on that which delights his senses at a particular time.  In the test of truth, senses are deceiving, and fail to yield long term happiness.  

The distraction Satan has placed before us is one of blind challenge.  The modern Christian tries dearly to both justify and exemplify the truth of Jesus Christ to those who think with their senses.  The result is always that of disappointment and shattered faith.  Faith is lost because their efforts to help those they love yield little to no results.

The Bible clearly defines the uselessness attempting to teach the the truths of Christ to fools.
"A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself." - Proverbs 18:2
"The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise." - Proverbs 12:15
A Christian can expell much of their energy in the attempt to teach wisdom to fools.  Fools, in turn, will find pleasure in the twisting of their wise words to fit their sensual lives.  The fool understands that giving into God means to give up the life of sensual truth.  No longer are they subject to their own will, but to the will of one who will reveal their worldly pleasures as the path to death.
“Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.” — C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
Attempting to teach fools merely opens the Christian to vulnurability of receiving hatred from the world.  Those who have hardened their hearts against wisdom have already made themselves the enemy of the truth.  As with any battle, the fool sees the enemy as one that needs defeated, not tolerated.

It seems evident, the work of the modern Christian should focus it's efforts on teaching and encouraging those who are willing to subject themselves to the spirit of truth.  A person of this stature is one who has humility and has admitted they are open to the possibilities of truths beyond their sensual perceptions.  Many times, it is those who have reached a moral bankruptcy while living under the poor wisdom of fools.

The Christian faith offers truth for both the mind and the heart.  It bears answers to questions even avid skeptics have found perplexing.  For those who hunger for the truth of Christ through the mind, they ought to seek the writings of those who have endured the same intellectual challenges.

God has a way of reaching fools, in his own time.  The role of the Christian is to pray for those who do not seek his wisdom.  The fool doesn't believe in God's wisdom because of his heart, not his mind.  Jesus Christ, as the master of the heart, is the only one who can open the will of those who have hardened their hearts to his word.
"Ultimately, the problem with man is not the absence of evidence, it is the suppression of it." - Ravi Zacharias
C.S. Lewis was, for a large portion of his life, a staunch Atheist.  He challenged the Christian faith, as well as others, on all facets of the truth.  He was not a man of poor intelligence, he was one who seeked deeper answers to lifes more complex questions. Ravi Zacharias, who heads up RZIM, has made it his life's pursuit to accept the most intellectual of challenges from both theists and atheists against Christianity.  He often illustrates no other argument is near as coherent and filled with the wisdom and truth of life.

Seek not to change the minds of fools, pray that their hearts open to the necessity of God's wisdom.  Through actions and words, seek to bring enlightenment to those who openly love wisdom, of whose heart Jesus has already softened to the need for his truths.

- Craig Chamberlin

Economic Pain, God's Megaphone to a Deaf World

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With the financial strain on more and more individuals these days, God has opened a great opportunity for Christians around the world to proclaim their love.  We often look at the world in the ways that it can benefit us.  When everything is going well in our lives, it is easy to continue on in life without the necessity of dealing with God.  As history has shown, God is aware of this problem, and often uses pain to solve it.

C.S. Lewis once wrote "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains; it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” - The Problem of Pain

With America's continued move away from a society that embraces God's wisdom, we find ourselves presented with the consequences of our lack of wisdom.  For years, everyone knew the apathy that they had for government corruption and secretly enjoyed the worldly pleasures offered by our great nation.  Those who saw the corruption and pain resulting from that life have been praying for our great nation.  It appears that those prayers have been answered.

You see, when we ask God to free us from our vices - he does so in a way that many times causes us great pain.  Pride is the ultimate hinderance to our recovery through Christ, and before he can begin to work in our lives - he must destroy the power that we think we may have over our hearts.  Only when we admit we are powerless, and that we need him, will he begin to bring us back to where we should be.
"Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. We say that people are proud of being rich, or clever, or good-looking, but they are not. They are proud of being richer, or cleverer, or better-looking than others. If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking there would be nothing to be proud about. It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest." - C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
In our pride, we have destroyed our desire to do God's work.  We have replaced our purpose with the God of materialism - looking to our finances, homes and luxuries for ultimate happiness.  We have positioned ourselves above our brothers in sisters in competiton with them.  We cannot truly love another if we desire to be greater than them.  That is why pride is the most dangerous of sins.

Rejoice in this time for our country.  The world needs to come back to God.  We have become a nation that boast that it needs no God.  It is by this very sin that God destroyed the tower of Babylon. 

I do not find joy in the pain that those are suffering in these times, but lets not let that pain go to waste.  Jesus Christ can offer freedom from the pains, sufferings and fears of this world.  We need only embrace his truths.

- Craig Chamberlin