Things to click (4)

Hi.

Here’s another round-up of interesting things you can read on the interwebs. Each one tackles a different topic from a Christian perspective. But why bother? Why bother taking the time out to reading any of this? It’s because Christians need to think more. We should be people who look at the world around us, and seek to understand it from a biblical, Christ-centered perspective. It says in Psalm 36:9 “In your light, we see light.” Only in seeking our Maker’s perspective on reality can we truly begin to understand reality.

I hope as you click and read, God’s light shines on you so that your life will be filled with the light of his truth.

(1) Do you enjoy reading the Bible? Or do you find it a bit tedious and strange? Here are some tips on how to actually like reading the Bible.

(2) The popular atheist Richard Dawkins had a minor stroke recently. That got lots of people talking about him. Especially Christians. This blog post suggests Christians have good reasons to thank God for him.

(3) Recently a controversial educational program was introduced in some Australia primary schools. The main beef that many people have with it is, in the words of one person, that “children are being taught about sexual orientation and transgender issues at school in a taxpayer-funded program written by gay activists”. It’s worth reading some Christian reflections on the issue.

(4) While we’re on the topic of gender, one ongoing issue in the contemporary church is that of leadership roles in the church. Are leadership roles (presiding over mixed gender meetings) purely for men, or both men and women? Egalitarians suggest it’s both men and women. Complementarians stubbornly insist that it’s only men – a view which sounds bizarrely archaic and misogynistic to many today. Here is a defense of being “pro-woman” but complementarian at the same time.

(5) At Wavell Heights Presbyterian Church our Bible teaching is a mixture of topical and ‘expository’ preaching. However, we favour sequential expository preaching. Here are some benefits of teaching this way.

Blessings.

Soli Deo Gloria.

Things to click (3)

The internet is a blessing and a curse. On the one hand it’s like a huge library – a source of immensely helpful information about our world. On the other hand, it’s  . . . . well . . . . just plain weird.

These “Things to click” posts exist so you can connect with some of the more helpful stuff on the interwebs. We hope you’ll check out a couple of links and do some thinking about the topics raised. Thinking is good. Especially for Christians. Here goes . . .

(1) Does evolutionary psychology really provide an adequate explanation of human psychology?  Natasha Moore thinks not. Check it out here.

(2) Recently a group of cinema distributors have declared a short film of the Lord’s Prayer (created by the Church of England) to be unsuitable for screening. They believe it carries the risk of upsetting or offending people. Here it is:

Naturally, the decision to not air the advertisement has drawn a variety of responses. One writer for the Guardian said the decision is “nonsense on stilts”. One writer explains (from a Christian perspective) exactly what it is that makes the prayer offensive. Richard Dawkins said if “anyone is offended by a prayer, they deserve to be offended.”

(3) Andrew Shead (head of OT Theology at Moore Theological College) has written a short article which speaks to the idea that we must be “beautiful people” – people who have it all sorted out, people who are on top of their game. It’s called “A Church for Broken People”.

(4) Several senior members of a Singaporean megachurch have been jailed for misusing church funds. It’s a warning about the temptations of mixing power, money, and people. It’s sad to see the church’s reputation damaged by such unbiblical behaviour.

(5) Here are some recent concerns regarding same-sex marriage and religious freedom in Australia. In the past week or so a Catholic archbishop was told he’d have to appear before an anti-discrimination authority in Tasmania because of a small booklet on biblical marriage that was distributed in Catholic schools down there. Hmmmm.

May God bless your clicking!

Things to click (2)

“I just don’t know what to say to people.” 

More Christians are saying that nowadays.

In Australia, where biblical Christianity is Choice conceptat best on the fringes of our culture, Christians are finding it harder to explain and defend what they believe. Our cherished beliefs are being challenged by people who don’t share our basic presuppositions – that God is real, that Jesus is King, that we are accountable to Him, that there are objective moral values, etc. Because many people don’t share these basics with us, trying to have a good Christian witness to others is difficult. When people inevitably ask us questions about our beliefs, most of us struggle for answers. Have a think about some of these questions:

Why are Christians so judgemental?

Is the Bible homophobic?

If God is so good, why do babies die of cancer?

How can you say Jesus rose from the dead when they found the tomb of Jesus?

I read that Christians believe God made the world 6,000 years ago. Is that true?

How can the church say it’s loving when there are so many pedophile priests?

I believe we all have our own path of spirituality, don’t you?

How can you trust stuff in an outdated book written by primitive people?

Why bother with religion when we have science now?

Reading these questions you probably found one or two that you could say something helpful about. As for the rest you’d probably struggle.

That’s why from time to time we post a series of internet links that help you connect with a wide range of good food-for-thought. As ambassadors for Christ we need to be thinkers – people who learn to ‘read’ people, the culture, and the Bible, and consider deeply what God would have us believe and do. 

The more we read, think, and pray, the more we’ll be able to “give an answer to everyone who asks us about the hope within us” (1 Peter 3:15). That’s why we post links: so you click them, read them, think about them, and pray about what’s being said.

Frankly, often our lack of answers is due to a simple lack of knowledge. You can’t speak about a topic you don’t know much about.

But having a good Christian witness isn’t just about having a list of answers. It’s about having an informed biblical worldview that’s connected to a cruciform heart – a heart shaped by the cross. Our goal in answering people (however imperfectly) is to point them to Christ.

We’ll think more about that in a future post. For now, here are some things to click:

(1) Here’s a great book review by pastor Tim Keller on some recent “pro-gay Christian” books. It’s worth reading.

(2) Someone posted a great article about the future of evangelicalism in the West.

(3) Here’s a different one. It talks about some of the essential biological differences between men and women in the armed forces. It argues that, despite attempts to say that men are women are basically the same, combat experience shows that’s not the case.

(4) Sometimes Christians will repost information on Facebook without really checking to see if it’s true. This article suggests that’s a bad idea.

(5) Here are some deep reflections about same-sex marriage by Dr. Mark Thompson, Principal of Moore Theological College.

May God bless your clicking!

Things to click (1)

If you’re a person who likes to surf the net, why not use your surfing time as an opportunity to chew on some good food-for-thought?

Here are a few good things to click:

(a) Thinking of God is a great Australian blog where you can find people interacting on a whole range of issues: http://thinkingofgod.org/

(b) The Briefing is another great Aussie Christian resource: http://matthiasmedia.com/briefing/

(c) The Centre for Public Christianity, based in Sydney, has a whole range of great resources to check out: http://publicchristianity.org/library

(d) This website in the US has some great “Reformed” Christian resources, including lots of pretty heavy theological stuff http://www.monergism.com/

(e) If you like the Christian writings of C. S. Lewis, you’ll love these visual accompaniments to selected readings of his works: https://www.youtube.com/user/CSLewisDoodle

(f) Ravi Zacharias is a world renowned Christian apologist (defender of Christian truth). His website also has some great stuff that’s well worth checking out: https://www.youtube.com/user/rzimmedia/videos

May your mouse-clicks help you to grow in love and truth!