• 설교
  • 예화
  • 자료
  • 성경
SABBATH One man challenged another to an all-day wood chopping contest. The challenger worked very hard, stopping only for a brief lunch break. The other man had a leisurely lunch and took several breaks during the day. At the end of the day, the challenger was surprised and annoyed to find that the other fellow had chopped substantially more wood than he had. \"I don\'t get it,\" he said. \"Every time I checked, you were taking a rest, yet you chopped more wood than I did.\" \"But you didn\'t notice,\" said the winning woodsman, \"that I was sharpening my ax when I sat down to rest.\" L. S. Chafer, Grace. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- J. Vernon McGee tells this story about a man who wanted to argue about the Sabbath. The man said, \"I\'ll give you $100 if you will show me where the Sabbath day has been changed.\" McGee answered, \"I don\'t think it has been changed. Saturday is Saturday, it is the seventh say of the week, and it is the Sabbath day. I realize our calendar has been adjusted, and can be off a few days, but we won\'t even consider that point. The seventh day is still Saturday, and it is still the Sabbath day.\" He got a gleam in his eye and said, \"Then why don\'t you keep the Sabbath day if it hasn\'t been changed?\" McGee answered, \"the DAY hasn\'t changed, but I have been changed. I\'ve been given a new nature now, I am joined to Christ; I am a part of the new creation. We celebrate the first day because that is the day He rose from the grave.\" That is what it means that the ordinances have been nailed to the cross, Colosians 2:14. J. Vernon McGee. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SACRIFICE It is said that Cyrus, the founder of the Persian Empire, once had captured a prince and his family. When they came before him, the monarch asked the prisoner, \"What will you give me if I release you?\" \"The half of my wealth,\" was his reply. \"And if I release your children?\" \"Everything I possess.\" \"And if I release your wife?\" \"Your Majesty, I will give myself.\" Cyrus was so moved by his devotion that he freed them all. As they returned home, the prince said to his wife, \"Wasn\'t Cyrus a handsome man!\" With a look of deep love for her husband, she said to him, \"I didn\'t notice. I could only keep my eyes on you- -the one who was willing to give himself for me.\" Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- At lunch one day in a hotel with her son Reggie and his new wife, Gloria, Alice Vanderbilt asked whether Gloria had received her pearls. Reggie replied that he had not yet bought any because the only pearls worthy of his bride were beyond his price. His mother then calmly ordered that a pair of scissors be brought to her. When the scissors arrived, Mrs. Vanderbilt promptly cut off about one-third of her own $70,000 pearl necklace and handed them to her new daughter-in-law. \"There you are, Gloria,\" she said. \"All Vanderbilt women have pearls.\" Today in the Word, September 18, 1993. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- During his reign, King Frederick William III of Prussia found himself in trouble. Wars had been costly, and in trying to build the nation, he was seriously short of finances. He couldn\'t disappoint his people, and to capitulate to the enemy was unthinkable. After careful reflection, he decided to ask the women of Prussia to bring their jewelry of gold and silver to be melted down for their country. For each ornament received, he determined to exchange a decoration of bronze or iron as a symbol of his gratitude. Each decoration would be inscribed, \"I gave gold for iron, 18l3.\" The response was overwhelming. Even more important, these women prized their gifts from the king more highly than their former jewelry. The reason, of course, is clear. The decorations were proof that they had sacrificed for their king. Indeed, it became unfashionable to wear jewelry, and thus was established the Order of the Iron Cross. Members wore no ornaments except a cross of iron for all to see. When Christians come to their King, they too exchange the flourishes of their former life for a cross. Lynn Jost. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- It is said that on his retreat from Greece after his great military expedition there, King Xerxes boarded a Phoenician ship along with a number of his Persian troops. But a fearful storm came up, and the captain told Xerxes there was no hope unless the ship\'s load was substantially lightened. The king turned to his fellow Persians on deck and said, \"It is on you that my safety depends. Now let some of you show your regard for your king.\" A number of the men bowed to Xerxes and threw themselves overboard! Lightened of its load, the ship made it safely to harbor. Xerxes immediately ordered that a golden crown be given to the pilot for preserving the king\'s life -- then ordered the man beheaded for causing the loss of so many Persian lives! Today in the Word, July 11, 1993. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Fifty-six men signed the Declaration of Independence. Their conviction resulted in untold sufferings for themselves and their families. Of the 56 men, five were captured by the British and tortured before they died. Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons in the Revolutionary Army. Another had two sons captured. Nine of the fifty-six fought and died from wounds or hardships of the war. Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships sunk by the British navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts and died in poverty. At the battle of Yorktown, the British General Cornwallis had taken over Thomas Nelson\'s home for his headquarters. Nelson quietly ordered General George Washington to open fire on the Nelson home. The home was destroyed and Nelson died bankrupt. John Hart was driven from his wife\'s bedside as she was dying. Their thirteen children fled for their lives. His fields and mill were destroyed. For over a year, he lived in forest and caves, returning home only to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later, he died from exhaustion. Kenneth L. Dodge, Resource, Sept./ Oct., 1992, p. 5. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sitting majestically atop the highest hill in Toledo, Spain, is the Alcazar, a 16th-century fortress. In the civil war of the 1930s, the Alcazar became a battleground when the Loyalists tried to oust the Nationalists, who held the fortress. During one dramatic episode of the war, the Nationalist leader received a phone call while in his office at the Alcazar. It was from his son, who had been captured by the Loyalists. The ultimatum: If the father didn\'t surrender the Alcazar to them, they would kill his son. The father weighed his options. After a long pause and with a heavy heart, he said to his son, \"Then die like a man.\" Daily Walk, April 16, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I went into church and sat on the velvet pew. I watched as the sun came shining through the stained glass windows. The minister dressed in a velvet robe opened the golden gilded Bible, marked it with a silk bookmark and said, \"If any man will be my disciple, said Jesus, let him deny himself, take up his cross, sell what he has, give it to the poor, and follow me.\" Soren Kierkagaard, in \"And I looked Around and Nobody was Laughing.\" -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Boarding the SS Dorchester on a dreary winter day in 1943 were 903 troops and four chaplains, including Moody alumnus Lt. George Fox. World War II was in full swing, and the ship was headed across the icy North Atlantic where German U-boats lurked. At 12:00 on the morning of February 3, a German torpedo ripped into the ship. \"She\'s going down!\" the men cried, scrambling for lifeboats. A young GI crept up to one of the chaplains. \"I\'ve lost my life jacket,\" he said. \"Take this,\" the chaplain said, handing the soldier his jacket. Before the ship sank, each chaplain gave his life jacket to another man. The heroic chaplains then linked arms and lifted their voices in prayer as the Dorchester went down. Lt. Fox and his fellow pastors were awarded posthumously the Distinguished Service Cross. Today in the Word, April 1, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Ministry that costs nothing, accomplishes nothing. John Henry Jowett. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sometimes marriage to a great leader comes with a special price for his wife. Such was the case for Mary Moffatt Livingstone, wife of Dr. David Livingstone, perhaps the most celebrated missionary in the Western world. Mary was born in Africa as the daughter of Robert Moffatt, the missionary who inspired Livingstone to go to Africa. The Livingstones were married in Africa in 1845, but the years that followed were difficult for Mary. Finally, she and their six children returned to England so she could recuperate as Livingstone plunged deeper into the African interior. Unfortunately, even in England Mary lived in near poverty. The hardships and long separations took their toll on Mrs. Livingstone, who died when she was just forty-two. Today in the Word, MBI, January, 1990, p. 12. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Every year in Alaska, a 1000-mile dogsled race, run for prize money and prestige, commemorates an original \"race\" run to save lives. Back in January of 1926, six-year-old Richard Stanley showed symptoms of diphtheria, signaling the possibility of an outbreak in the small town of Nome. When the boy passed away a day later, Dr. Curtis Welch began immunizing children and adults with an experimental but effective anti-diphtheria serum. But it wasn\'t long before Dr. Welch\'s supply ran out, and the nearest serum was in Nenana, Alaska--1000 miles of frozen wilderness away. Amazingly, a group of trappers and prospectors volunteered to cover the distance with their dog teams! Operating in relays from trading post to trapping station and beyond, one sled started out from Nome while another, carrying the serum, started from Nenana. Oblivious to frostbite, fatigue, and exhaustion, the teamsters mushed relentlessly until, after 144 hours in minus 50-degree winds, the serum was delivered to Nome. As a result, only one other life was lost to the potential epidemic. Their sacrifice had given an entire town the gift of life. Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lengthy Illustrations Two weeks after the stolen steak deal, I took Helen (eight years old) and Brandon (five years old) to the Cloverleaf Mall in Hattiesburg to do a little shopping. As we drove up, we spotted a Peterbilt eighteen-wheeler parked with a big sign on it that said, \"Petting Zoo.\" The kids jumped up in a rush and asked, \"Daddy, Daddy. Can we go? Please. Please. Can we go?\" \"Sure,\" I said, flipping them both a quarter before walking into Sears. They bolted away, and I felt free to take my time looking for a scroll saw. A petting zoo consists of a portable fence erected in the mall with about six inches of sawdust and a hundred little furry baby animals of all kinds. Kids pay their money and stay in the enclosure enraptured with the squirmy little critters while their moms and dads shop. A few minutes later, I turned around and saw Helen walking along behind me. I was shocked to see she preferred the hardware department to the petting zoo. Recognizing my error, I bent down and asked her what was wrong. She looked up at me with those giant limpid brown eyes and said sadly, \"Well, Daddy, it cost fifty cents. So, I gave Brandon my quarter.\" Then she said the most beautiful thing I ever heard. She repeated the family motto. The family motto is in \"Love is Action!\" She had given Brandon her quarter, and no one loves cuddly furry creatures more than Helen. She had watched Sandy take my steak and say, \"Love is Action!\" She had watched both of us do and say \"Love is Action!\" for years around the house and Kings Arrow Ranch. She had heard and seen \"Love is Action,\" and now she had incorporated it into her little lifestyle. It had become part of her. What do you think I did? Well, not what you might think. As soon as I finished my errands, I took Helen to the petting zoo. We stood by the fence and watched Brandon go crazy petting and feeding the animals. Helen stood with her hands and chin resting on the fence and just watched Brandon. I had fifty cents burning a hole in my pocket; I never offered it to Helen, and she never asked for it. Because she knew the whole family motto. It\'s not \"Love is Action.\" It\'s \"Love is SACRIFICIAL Action!\" Love always pays a price. Love always costs something. Love is expensive. When you love, benefits accrue to another\'s account. Love is for you, not for me. Love gives; it doesn\'t grab. Helen gave her quarter to Brandon and wanted to follow through with her lesson. She knew she had to taste the sacrifice. She wanted to experience that total family motto. Love is sacrificial action. Dave Simmons, Dad, The Family Coach, Victor Books, 1991, p. 123-124. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jermaine Washington, 26, did something that amazes many people. He became a kidney donor, giving a vital organ to a woman he describes as \"just a friend.\" Washington met Michelle Stevens, 23, when they began working together at the Washington, D.C., Department of Employment Services. They used to have lunch with one another and chitchat during breaks. \"He was somebody I could talk to,\" says Stevens. \"One day, I cried on his shoulder. I had been on the kidney donor waiting list for 11 months, and I had lost all hope.\" She told Washington how depressing it was to spend three days a week, three hours a day, on a kidney dialysis machine. She suffered chronic fatigue and blackouts and was plagued by joint pain. He could already see that she had lost her smile. \"I saw my friend dying before my eyes,\" Washington recalls. \"What was I supposed to do? Sit back and watch her die?\" Steven\'s mother, suffering from hypertension, was ineligible to donate a kidney. Her two brothers were reluctant. \"I understood,\" says Stevens. \"They said they loved me very much, but they were just too afraid.\" The operation at Washington Hospital Center in April 1991 began with a painful procedure in which doctors inserted a catheter into an artery in Washington\'s groin. They then injected dye through the catheter into his kidney before taking X rays to determine if it was fit for transplant. A week later, an incision nearly 15 inches long was made from his navel to the middle of his back. After surgery he remained hospitalized for five days. Today, both Stevens and Washington are fully recovered. \"I jog at least twice a week,\" Washington says. Three times a month, they get together for what they call a \"gratitude lunch.\" Despite occasional pressure by friends, a romantic relationship is not what they want. \"We are thankful for the beautiful friendship that we have,\" Stevens says. \"We don\'t want to mess up a good thing.\" To this day, people wonder why Washington did it -- and even question his sanity. But when one admirer asked him where he had found the courage to give away a kidney, his answer quelled the skeptics. \"I prayed for it,\" Washington replied. \"I asked God for guidance and that\'s what I got.\" Courtland Milloy in Washington Post, quoted in Reader\'s Digest. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Eric Fellman speaks of meeting a Chinese couple in Hong Kong, while traveling to China. \"A friend took me down a narrow alley to a second-floor flat to meet a man recently released from prison in China. I knew I would be pressed to carry Bibles and literature on my trip. But I was hesitant and tried to mask my fear with rationalizations about legalities and other concerns. A Chinese man in his 6Os opened the door. His smile was radiant, but his back was bent almost double. He led us to a sparsely furnished room. A Chinese woman of about the same age came in to serve tea. As she lingered, I couldn\'t help but notice how they touched and lovingly looked at each other. My staring apparently didn\'t go unnoticed, for soon they were both giggling. \"What is it?\" I asked my friend. \"Oh nothing,\" he said with a smile. \"They just wanted you to know it was OK--they\'re newlyweds.\" I learned they had been engaged in 1949, when he was a student at Nanking Seminary. On the day of their wedding rehearsal, Chinese communists seized the seminary. They took the students to a hard-labor prison. For the next 30 years, the bride-to-be was allowed only one visit per year. Each time, following their brief minutes together, the man would be called to the warden\'s office. \"You may go home with your bride,\" he said, \"if you will renounce Christianity.\" Year after year, this man replied with just one word; \"No.\" I was stunned. How had he been able to stand the strain for so long, being denied his family, his marriage, and even his health? When I asked, he seemed astonished at my question. He replied, \"With all that Jesus has done for me, how could I betray Him?\" The next day, I requested that my suitcase be crammed with Bibles and training literature for Chinese Christians. I determined not to lie about the materials, yet lost not one minute of sleep worrying about the consequences. And as God had planned, my suitcases were never inspected. Eric Fellman, Moody Monthly, January 1986 p. 33. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary People talk of the sacrifice I have made in spending so much of my life in Africa. Can that be called a sacrifice which is simply acknowledging a great debt we owe to our God, which we can never repay? Is that a sacrifice which brings its own reward in healthful activity, the consciousness of doing good, peace of mind, and a bright hope of a glorious destiny? It is emphatically no sacrifice. Rather it is a privilege. Anxiety, sickness, suffering, danger, foregoing the common conveniences of this life--these may make us pause, and cause the spirit to waver, and the soul to sink; but let this only be for a moment. All these are nothing compared with the glory which shall later be revealed in and through us. I never made a sacrifice. Of this we ought not to talk, when we remember the great sacrifice which He made who left His Father\'s throne on high to give Himself for us. David Livingstone. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SAFETY Some things that appear dangerous are actually much less hazardous than their safer-looking alternative. Commercial airline travel, for instance, is 30 times safer than transportation by car. It may not seem that way to the person who would rather fight rush hour traffic on the ground than ride a solitary Boeing 747 at 35,000 feet. But out of 5 million scheduled commercial flights in 1982, only 5 resulted in fatal accidents. Being carried by tons of metal thrust through the air by huge jet engines is actually safer than being pulled along in an 8-cylinder machine that never leaves the ground. Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The story is told of a monastery in Portugal, perched high on a 3,000 foot cliff and accessible only by a terrifying ride in a swaying basket. The basket is pulled with a single rope by several strong men, perspiring under the strain of the fully loaded basket. One American tourist who visited the site got nervous halfway up the cliff when he noticed that the rope was old and frayed. Hoping to relive his fear he asked, \"How often do you change the rope?\" The monk in charge replied, \"Whenever it breaks!\" Daily Walk, March 30, 1992 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SALT Sodium is an extremely active element found naturally only in combined form; it always links itself to another element. Chlorine, on the other hand, is the poisonous gas that gives bleach its offensive odor. When sodium and chlorine are combined, the result is sodium chloride--common table salt--the substance we use to preserve meat and bring out its flavor. Love and truth can be like sodium and chlorine. Love without truth is flighty, sometimes blind, willing to combine with various doctrines. On the other hand, truth by itself can be offensive, sometimes even poisonous. Spoken without love, it can turn people away from the gospel. When truth and love are combined in an individual or a church, however, then we have what Jesus called \"the salt of the earth,\" and we\'re able to preserve and bring out the beauty of our faith. David H. Johnson.
SALVAGED (see also SECOND CHANCE) A sculptor had ruined a huge piece of beautiful Carrara marble. It was left in the courtyard of the cathedral in Florence, Italy, for almost a hundred years. Artisans thought it was beyond repair. But in 1505, a young sculptor by the name of Michelangelo was asked if he thought anything could be done with \"The Giant.\" He measured the block and carefully noted the imperfections caused by the bungling workman of an earlier day. To his mind came the image of the young shepherd boy David. So he carefully made a sketch of that biblical character as he envisioned him. For 3 years he worked steadily, his chisel skillfully shaping the marble. Finally, when one of his students was allowed to view the towering figure, 18 feet high and weighing 9 tons, he exclaimed, \"Master, it lacks only one thing, and that is speech!\" Unknown.
SALVATION The Romans\' Road to Salvation. Romans: 3:23, 6:23; 5:8; 10:9, 10, 13. Traditional. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- During the Spanish-American War, Clara Barton was overseeing the work of the Red Cross in Cuba. One day Colonel Theodore Roosevelt came to her, wanted to buy food for his sick and wounded Rough Riders. But she refused to sell him any. Roosevelt was perplexed. His men needed the help and he was prepared to pay out of his own funds. When he asked someone why he could not buy the supplies, he was told, \"Colonel, just ask for it!\" A smile broke over Roosevelt\'s face. Now he understood--the provisions were not for sale. All he had to do was simply ask and they would be given freely. Our Daily Bread, October 11, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lord Kenneth Clark, internationally know for his television series Civilization, lived and died without faith in Jesus Christ. He admitted in his autobiography that while visiting a beautiful church he had what he believed to be an overwhelming religious experience. \"My whole being,\" Clark wrote, \"was irradiated by a kind of heavenly joy far more intense than anything I had known before.\" But the \"gloom of grace,\" as he described it, created a problem. If he allowed himself to be influenced by it, he knew he would have to change, his family might think he had lost his mind, and maybe that intense joy would prove to be an illusion. So he concluded, \"I was too deeply embedded in the world to change course.\" Our Daily Bread, February 15, 1994. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Graffiti from the 1800s discovered by workers renovating the Washington Monument has quite a different tone from that usually found today on the sides of buildings and subway cars: \"Whoever is the human instrument under God in the conversion of one soul, erects a monument to his own memory more lofty and enduing (sic) than this,\" reads the inscription which can now be viewed by visitors to the monument. It is signed BFB. No one knows who that is, or who left the small drawings and 19th century dates on other walls. The markings in the lobby of the monument were covered over when it was decorated at the turn of the century. They were found when workers removed marble wainscoting as part of a year-long $500,000 renovation which was just completed. Spokesman-Review, June, 1994. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In 1981, a Minnesota radio station reported a story about a stolen car in California. Police were staging an intense search for the vehicle and the driver, even to the point of placing announcements on local radio stations to contact the thief. On the front seat of the stolen car sat a box of crackers that, unknown to the thief, were laced with poison. The car owner had intended to use the crackers as rat bait. Now the police and the owner of the VW Bug were more interested in apprehending the thief to save his life than to recover the car. So often when we run from God, we feel it is to escape his punishment. But what we are actually doing is eluding his rescue. Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Salvation depends upon Christ\'s work for us, while rewards depend upon our works for Christ. Milburn Cockrell. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A marshal in Napoleon\'s army -- a man who was devotedly and enthusiastically attached to him -- was mortally wounded in battle. As the last struggle drew near and he lay dying in his tent, he sent for his chief. Napoleon came. The poor man thought his emperor could do anything. Perhaps he even sought to put him in the place of God. So he earnestly pleaded with his leader to save his life. The emperor sadly shook his head and turned away. But as the dying man felt the cold, merciless hand of death drawing him irresistibly behind the curtain of the unseen world, he was still heard to shriek out, \"Save me, Napoleon! Save me!\" In the hour of death, that soldier discovered that even the powerful Napoleon could not give him physical life. Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Back in 1830 George Wilson was convicted of robbing the U.S. Mail and was sentenced to be hanged. President Andrew Jackson issued a pardon for Wilson, but he refused to accept it. The matter went to Chief Justice Marshall, who concluded that Wilson would have to be executed. \"A pardon is a slip of paper,\" wrote Marshall, \"the value of which is determined by the acceptance of the person to be pardoned. If it is refused, it is no pardon. George Wilson must be hanged.\"For some, the pardon comes too late. For others, the pardon is not accepted. Prokope, V. 11, #5. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A businessman well known for his ruthlessness once announced to writer Mark Twain, \"Before I die I mean to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. I will climb Mount Sinai and read the 10 Commandments aloud at the top.\" \"I have a better idea,\" replied Twain. \"You could stay in Boston and keep them.\" Moody Bible Institute\'s Today in the Word, September, 1991, p. 32. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The citizens of Feldkirch, Austria, didn\'t know what to do. Napoleon\'s massive army was preparing to attack. Soldiers had been spotted on the heights above the little town, which was situated on the Austrian border. A council of citizens was hastily summoned to decide whether they should try to defend themselves or display the white flag of surrender. It happened to be Easter Sunday, and the people had gathered in the local church. The pastor rose and said, \"Friends, we have been counting on our own strength, and apparently that has failed. As this is the day of our Lord\'s resurrection, let us just ring the bells, have our services as usual, and leave the matter in His hands. We know only our weakness, and not the power of God to defend us.\" The council accepted his plan and the church bells rang. The enemy, hearing the sudden peal, concluded that the Austrian army had arrived during the night to defend the town. Before the service ended, the enemy broke camp and left. Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Several years ago a man and his wife were found frozen to death in their car. A blizzard had dumped tons of snow in the area, burying their vehicle. Before she died, the woman scribbled a note on a piece of paper and stuffed it in the glove compartment. The note read: \"I don\'t want to die this way.\" Tragically, less than six feet from their icy grave was a stranded bus, whose festive passengers remained warm throughout the night. Today in the Word, October, 1990, p. 28. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- \"The life of Christianity consists of possessive pronouns\" says Martin Luther. It is one thing to say, \"Christ is a Saviour\"; it is quite another thing to say, \"He is my Saviour and my Lord.\" The devil can say the first; the true Christian alone can say the second. Resource, July/August, 1990. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In May, 1963, in an interview conducted by Sherwook E. Wirt , C. S. Lewis said, \"There are many different ways of bringing people into His Kingdom, even some ways that I specially dislike.\" Quoted in His, November. 1976. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The devil and his cohorts were devising plans to get people to reject the Gospel. \"Let\'s go to them and say there is no God,\" proposed one. Silence prevailed. Every devil knew that most people believe in a supreme being. \"Let\'s tell them there is no hell, no future punishment for the wicked,\" offered another. That was turned down, because men obviously have consciences which tell them that sin must be punished. The concave was going to end in failure when there came a voice from the rear: \"Tell them there is a God, there is a hell and that the Bible is the Word of God. But tell them there is plenty of time to decide the question. Let them \'neglect\' the Gospel, until it is too late.\" All hell erupted with ghoulish glee, for they knew that if a person procrastinated on Christ, they usually never accept Him. Resource, July/August, 1990. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Three elements of personality are involved in making a decision to become a Christian, or in making any significant decision for that matter. They are the emotions, the intellect, and the will. For example, a young man meets a young woman. They are immediately attracted to one another. They both say to themselves, \"Now there is someone I\'d like to marry.\" At that point, if the emotions had their way, there would be a wedding. But the intellect intervenes, questioning the impulsive emotional response. Would we be compatible? What is she really like? Can I afford to support her? Both conclude it would be better to take some more time and answer a few questions before they proceed. So the two begin spending more time with each other. He eventually concludes that she is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. Now his intellect has sided with the emotions on the idea of marriage. But the final and heaviest vote remains to be cast -- that of the will. It stops the march toward the altar with the questions, \"Am I willing to give up this lifestyle for another? What about my freedom -- is it worth the trade? Am I willing to assume the added responsibility?\" The marriage will occur only when the will finally agrees with the emotions and the intellect. And so it is in coming to Christ. Jim Peterson, Living Proof , NavPress, 1989, p. 170. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lengthy Illustrations Normally the flight from Nassau to Miami took Walter Wyatt, Jr., only sixty-five minutes. But on December 5, 1986, he attempted it after thieves had looted the navigational equipment in his Beechcraft. With only a compass and a hand-held radio, Walter flew into skies blackened by storm clouds. When his compass began to gyrate, Walter concluded he was headed in the wrong direction. He flew his plane below the clouds, hoping to spot something, but soon he knew he was lost. He put out a mayday call, which brought a Coast Guard Falcon search plane to lead him to an emergency landing strip only six miles away. Suddenly Wyatt\'s right engine coughed its last and died. The fuel tank had run dry. Around 8 p.m. Wyatt could do little more than glide the plane into the water. Wyatt survived the crash, but his plane disappeared quickly, leaving him bobbing on the water in a leaky life vest. With blood on his forehead, Wyatt floated on his back. Suddenly he felt a hard bump against his body. A shark had found him. Wyatt kicked the intruder and wondered if he would survive the night. He managed to stay afloat for the next ten hours. In the morning, Wyatt saw no airplanes, but in the water a dorsal fin was headed for him. Twisting, he felt the hide of a shark brush against him. In a moment, two more bull sharks sliced through the water toward him. Again he kicked the sharks, and they veered away, but he was nearing exhaustion. Then he heard the sound of a distant aircraft. When it was within a half mile, he waved his orange vest. The pilot radioed the Cape York, which was twelve minutes away: \"Get moving, cutter! There\'s a shark targeting this guy!\" As the Cape York pulled alongside Wyatt, a Jacob\'s ladder was dropped over the side. Wyatt climbed wearily out of the water and onto the ship, where he fell to his knees and kissed the deck. He\'d been saved. He didn\'t need encouragement or better techniques. Nothing less than outside intervention could have rescued him from sure death. How much we are like Walter Wyatt. Peter Michelmore, Reader\'s Digest, October, 1987. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary The thief had nails through both hands, so that he could not work; and a nail through each foot, so that he could not run errands for the Lord; he could not lift a hand or a foot toward his salvation, and yet Christ offered him the gift of God; and he took it. Christ threw him a passport, and took him into Paradise. D. L. Moody, \"Day by Day with D.L Moody,\" Moody Press. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- When the author walks onto the stage, the play is over. God is going to invade, all right; but what is the good of saying you are on His side then, when you see the whole natural universe melting away like a dream and something else comes crashing in? This time it will be God without disguise; something so overwhelming that it will strike either irresistible love or irresistible horror into every creature. It will be too late then to choose your side. That will not be the time for choosing; It will be the time when we discover which side we really have chosen, whether we realized it before or not. Now, today, this moment, is our chance to choose the right side. C.S. Lewis. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A.B. Simpson is reported to have said that the gospel \"Tells rebellious men that God is reconciled, that justice is satisfied, that sin has been atoned for, that the judgment of the guilty may be revoked, the condemnation of the sinner cancelled, the curse of the Law blotted out, the gates of hell closed, the portals of heaven opened wide, the power of sin subdued, the guilty conscience healed, the broken heart comforted, the sorrow and misery of the Fall undone. M. Cocoris, Evangelism, A Biblical Approach, , Moody, 1984, p. 29. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Statistics and Research Despite the efforts of evangelists, parachurch ministries and local churches, the percentage of American adults who are born again Christians is no different now than in 1982, according to a study by the Barna Research Group. The study found that 34% of all Americans can be identified as born again--that is, they have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ, and say they will go to heaven because they have confessed their sins and accepted Christ as their savior. Among those surveyed, 62% said they had made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in their lives today. However, among those who have made a commitment to Christ, only 55 percent believe they will go to heaven because of accepting Christ as their personal savior (the basic belief in the \"born again\" movement)...Most of those surveyed said they would go to heaven because of living a good life, or obeying the 10 commandments, or because all people will go to heaven. Others who said they had made a commitment to Christ said they were unsure about what will happen to them after they die. Reported in Inland Northwest Christian News, March, 1990, p. 3. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- According to a recent poll of American young adult men, 48% believe that most of the problems in the world today are a result of man himself. Only 41% indicated agreement that Jesus has provided the way to know God personally. Only 29% could correctly state how one becomes a Christian. But 67% were interested in knowing more about Christianity. What\'s Gone Wrong With The Harvest. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SALVATION, Assurance of (구원의 확신)
SALVATION, Assurance of No Illustrations yet. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary \'Tis not God\'s design that men should obtain assurance in any other way, than by mortifying corruption, and increasing in grace, and obtaining the lively exercises of it. And although self-examination be a duty of great use and importance, and by no means to be neglected; yet it is not the principal means, by which the saints do get satisfaction of their good estate. Assurance is not to be obtained so much by self-examination, as by action. Jonathan Edwards, The Religious Affections, Yale University Press, 1959, p. 195. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SALVATION, Plan of (구원 계획)
SALVATION, Plan of The Roman\'s Road to Salvation has been a traditional way of leading persons to faith in Christ for many years. Here is a brief outline of that plan. 1. Every human is a sinner. Romans 3:23 2. God\'s penalty for sin is death. Romans 6:23 3. In His great love, God has made provision for the salvation of sinners. Romans 5:8 4. Each person must put his trust in God\'s Son, Jesus Christ. Romans 10:9-10, 13
SANCTIFICATION Phillips Brooks, former minister of Boston\'s Trinity Episcopal Church, is perhaps best known as the author of \"O Little Town of Bethlehem.\" He was a very busy pastor, yet he always seemed relaxed and unburdened, willing to take time for anyone in need. Shortly before Brooks died, a young friend wrote to him and asked the secret of his strength and serenity. In a heartfelt response, Brooks credited his still-growing relationship with Christ. He wrote, \"The more I have thought it over, the more sure it has seemed to me that these last years have had a peace and fullness which there did not used to be. It is a deeper knowledge and truer love of Christ.....I cannot tell you how personal this grows to me. He is here. He knows me and I know Him. It is the most real thing in the world. And every day makes it more real. And one wonders with delight what it will grow to as the years go on.\" Our Daily Bread, October 14, 1994. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- God, make me good, but not yet. St. Augustine. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- When a person becomes a Christian, he usually undergoes some radical life changes, especially if he has had an immoral background. Through the first steps of spiritual growth and self-denial, he gets rid of the large, obvious sins. But sad to say, many believers stop there. They don\'t go on to eliminate the little sins that clutter the landscape of their lives. Gordon MacDonald, in his book Ordering Your Private World, told of an experience in his own life that illustrates this truth. \"Some years ago, when Gail and I bought the old abandoned New Hampshire farm we now call Peace Ledge, we found the site where we wished to build our country home strewn with rocks and boulders. It was going to take a lot of hard work to clear it all out....The first phase of the clearing process was easy. The big boulders went fast. And when they were gone, we began to see that there were a lot of smaller rocks that had to go too. But when we had cleared the site of the boulders and the rocks, we noticed all of the stones and pebbles we had not seen before. This was much harder, more tedious work. But we stuck to it, and there came the day when the soil was ready for planting grass.\" Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The story is told of a young girl who accepted Christ as her Savior and applied for membership in a local church. \"Were you a sinner before you received the Lord Jesus into your Life?\" inquired an old deacon. \"Yes, sir,\" she replied. \"Well, are you still a sinner?\" \"To tell you the truth, I feel I\'m a greater sinner than ever.\" \"Then what real change have you experienced?\" \"I don\'t quite know how to explain it,\" she said, \"except I used to be a sinner running after sin, but now that I am saved. I\'m a sinner running from sin!\" she was received into the fellowship of the church, and she proved by her consistent life that she was truly converted. Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- At the village church in Kalonovka, Russia, attendance at Sunday school picked up after the priest started handing out candy to the peasant children. One of the most faithful was a pug-nosed, pugnacious lad who recited his Scriptures with proper piety, pocketed his reward, then fled into the fields to munch on it. The priest took a liking to the boy, persuaded him to attend church school. This was preferable to doing household chores from which his devout parents excused him. By offering other inducements, the priest managed to teach the boy the four Gospels. In fact, he won a special prize for learning all four by heart and reciting them nonstop in church. Now, 60 years later, he still likes to recite Scriptures, but in a context that would horrify the old priest. For the prize pupil, who memorized so much of the Bible, is Nikita Khrushchev, the former Communist czar. As this anecdote illustrates, the \"why\" behind memorization is fully as important as the \"what.\" The same Nikita Khrushchev who nimbly mouthed God\'s Word when a child, later declared God to be nonexistent -- because his cosmonauts had not seen Him. Khrushchev memorized the Scriptures for the candy, the rewards, the bribes, rather than for the meaning it had for his life. Artificial motivation will produce artificial results. Moody\'s Anecdotes, p. 99. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A man once testified in one of D.L. Moody\'s meetings that he had lived \"on the Mount of Transfiguration\" for five years. \"How many souls did you lead to Christ last year?\" Moody bluntly asked him. \"Well,\" the man hesitated, \"I don\'t know.\" \"Have you saved any?\" Moody persisted. \"I don\'t know that I have,\" the man admitted. \"Well,\" said Moody, \"we don\'t want that kind of mountaintop experience. When a man gets up so high that he cannot reach down and save poor sinners, there is something wrong.\" W. Wiersbe, The Wycliffe Handbook of Preaching & Preachers, p. 202. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I am not what I might be, I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I wish to be, I am not what I hope to be. But I thank God I am not what I once was, and I can say with the great apostle, \"By the grace of God I am what I am. John Newton. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- It is easier to cry against one-thousand sins of others than to kill one of your own. John Flavel. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- When I was a child, I often had a toothache, and I knew that if I went to my mother, she would give me something which would deaden the pain for that night and let me get to sleep. But I did not go to my mother--at least not till the pain became very bad. And the reason I did not go was this: I did not doubt she would give me the aspirin; but I knew she would also do something else. I knew she would take me to the dentist the next morning. I could not get what I wanted out of her without getting soemthing more, which I did not want. I wanted immediate relief from my pain; but I could not get it without having my teeth set permanently right. And I knew those dentists; I knew they would start fiddling about with all sorts of other teeth which had not yet begun to ache. Our Lord is like the dentists. Dozens of people go to him to be cured of some particular sin. Well, he will cure it all right, but he will not stop there. That may be all you asked; but if you once call him in, he will give you the full treatment. C.S. Lewis. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Scottish preacher John McNeill liked to tell about an eagle that had been captured when it was quite young. The farmer who snared the bird put a restraint on it so it couldn\'t fly, and then he turned it loose to roam in the barnyard. It wasn\'t long till the eagle began to act like the chickens, scratching and pecking at the ground. This bird that once soared high in the heavens seemed satisfied to live the barnyard life of the lowly hen. One day the farmer was visited by a shepherd who came down from the mountains where the eagles lived. Seeing the eagle, the shepherd said to the farmer, \"What a shame to keep that bird hobbled here in your barnyard! Why don\'t you let it go?\" The farmer agreed, so they cut off the restraint. But the eagle continued to wander around, scratching and pecking as before. The shepherd picked it up and set it on a high stone wall. For the first time in months, the eagle saw the grand expanse of blue sky and the glowing sun. Then it spread its wings and with a leap soared off into a tremendous spiral flight, up and up and up. At last it was acting like an eagle again. John Mcneill. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Australian coat of arms pictures two creatures--the emu, a flightless bird, and the kangaroo. The animals were chosen because they share a characteristic that appealed to the Australian citizens. Both the emu and kangaroo can move only forward, not back. The emu\'s three-toed foot causes it to fall if it tries to go backwards, and the kangaroo is prevented from moving in reverse by its large tail. Those who truly choose to follow Jesus become like the emu and kangaroo, moving only forward, never back (Luke 9:62). Steve Morrison. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A man once bought a home with a tree in the backyard. It was winter, and nothing marked this tree as different from any other tree. When spring came, the tree grew leaves and tiny pink buds. \"How wonderful,\" thought the man. \"A flower tree! I will enjoy its beauty all summer.\" But before he had time to enjoy the flowers, the wind began to blow and soon all the petals were strewn in the yard. \"What a mess,\" he thought. \"This tree isn\'t any use after all.\" The summer passed, and one day the man noticed the tree was full of green fruit the size of large nuts. He picked one and took a bite. \"Bleagh!\" he cried and threw it to the ground. \"What a horrible taste! This tree is worthless. Its flowers are so fragile the wind blows them away, and its fruit is terrible and bitter. When winter comes, I\'m cutting it down. But the tree took no notice of the man and continued to draw water from the ground and warmth from the sun and in late fall produced crisp red apples. Some of us see Christians with their early blossoms of happiness and think they should be that way forever. Or we see bitterness in their lives, and we\'re sure they will never bear the better fruit of joy. Could it be that we forget some of the best fruit ripens late? Misty Mowrey. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lengthy Illustrations Professor Drummond once described a man going into one of our after meetings and saying he wanted to become a Christian. \"Well, my friend, what is the trouble?\" He doesn\'t like to tell. He is greatly agitated. Finally he says, \"The fact is, I have overdrawn my account\" -- a polite way of saying he has been stealing. \"Did you take your employer\'s money?\" \"Yes.\" \"How much?\" \"I don\'t know. I have never kept account of it.\" \"Well, you have an idea you stole $1,500 last year?\" \"I am afraid it is that much.\" \"Now, look here, sir, I don\'t believe in sudden work; don\'t steal more than a thousand dollars this next year, and the next year not more that five hundred, and in the course of the next few years you will get so that you won\'t steal any. If your employer catches you, tell him you are being converted; and you will get so that you won\'t steal any by and by.\" My friends, the thing is a perfect farce! \"Let him that stole, steal no more,\" that is what the Bible says. It is right about face. Take another illustration. Here comes a man, and he admits that he gets drunk every week. That man comes to a meeting, and wants to be converted. Shall I say, \"Don\'t you be in a hurry. I believe in doing the work gradually. Don\'t you get drunk and knock your wife down more than once a month?\" Wouldn\'t it be refreshing to his wife to go a whole month without being knocked down? Once a month, only twelve times in a year! Wouldn\'t she be glad to have him converted in this new way! Only get drunk after a few years on the anniversary of your wedding, and at Christmas, and then it will be effective because it is gradual! Oh! I detest all that kind of teaching. Let us go to the Bible and see what that old Book teaches. Let us believe it, and go and act as if we believed it, too. Salvation is instantaneous. I admit that a man may be converted so that he cannot tell when he crossed the line between death and life, but I also believe a man may be a thief one moment and a saint the next. I believe a man may be as vile as hell itself one moment, and be saved the next. Christian growth is gradual, just as physical growth is; but a man passes from death unto everlasting life quick as an act of the will -- \"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life.\" Moody\'s Anecdotes, pp. 99 - 100. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary Why would Christians choose to sin rather than choose what they know God wants them to do? Four answers are commonly given today. 1. Some would point to Romans 8:16 and explain that Christians who willfully sin have forgotten their true identity as \"children of God.\" While it is true that Christians can forget who they are and sin as a result, Christians can also be well aware of who they are and sin anyway. 2. Some say Christians choose to sin because they have lost sight of what God has done for them. 2 Peter 1:9 indicates that Christians can be \"blind or short-sighted, having forgotten [their] purification from [their] former sins.\" 3. Some wisely state that Christians consciously choose to sin because they have forgotten that God will severely discipline disobedient believers. 4. Some have said that Christians who consciously sin have lost their focus on the future. These Christians have forgotten that God will reward in heaven only those who have lived faithfully for Him here on earth (1 Cor 9:24). Christians who fail to keep eternity in mind often sin in the here and now. J.Kirk Johnston, Why Christians Sin, Discovery House, 1992, p. 31. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SARCASM Kondraty Ryleyev was sentenced to be hanged for his part in an unsuccessful uprising against the Russian czar Nicholas I in December 1825. But the rope broke and Ryleyev, bruised and battered, fell to the ground, got up, and said, \"In Russia they do not know how to do anything properly, not even how to make a rope.\" An accident of this sort usually resulted in a pardon, so a messenger was sent to the czar to know his pleasure. Nicholas asked, \"What did he say?\" \"Sire, he said that in Russia they do not even know how to make a rope properly.\" \"Well, let the contrary be proved,\" said the czar. Today in the Word, March 13, 1993.
SATAN (사탄)
SATAN (see also DEVIL) A friend and associate of boxers, American writer Wilson Mizner was himself a talented fighter. One night Mizner and boxer \"Mysterious\" Billy Smith visited a San Francisco bar, where Mizner started a fight with some longshoremen. At the end only one longshoreman was left standing. Although Mizner rained punches at him, he stayed obstinately upright. Suddenly, Smith noticed what was happening. \"Leave him alone, Wilson!\" he shouted. \"I knocked him out five minutes ago.\" On investigation it turned out that a punch from Smith had indeed knocked the longshoreman out cold, but had also wedged him vertically between two pieces of furniture. Here\'s an accurate picture of our already-defeated but still standing enemy Satan! Today in the Word, April 3, 1993. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Writing in Moody Monthly, Carl Armerding recounted his experience of watching a wildcat in a zoo. \"As I stood there,\" he said, \"an attendant entered the cage through a door on the opposite side. He had nothing in his hands but a broom. Carefully closing the door, he proceeded to sweep the floor of the cage.\" He observed that the worker had no weapon to ward off an attack by the beast. In fact, when he got to the corner of the cage where the wildcat was lying, he poked the animal with the broom. The wildcat hissed at him and then lay down in another corner of the enclosure. Armerding remarked to the attendant, \"You certainly are a brave man.\" \"No, I ain\'t brave,\" he replied as he continued to sweep. \"Well, then, that cat must be tame.\" \"No,\" came the reply, \"he ain\'t tame.\" \"If you aren\'t brave and the wildcat isn\'t tame, then I can\'t understand why he doesn\'t attack you.\" Armerding said the man chuckled, then replied with an air of confidence, \"Mister, he\'s old -- and he ain\'t got no teeth.\" Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The thoroughly evil nature of the devil consists in the fact that here we have spontaneous, self-generating sin expressed in pure defiance and pure arrogance. Nigel Wright, The Satan Syndrome, Zondervan, 1990, p. 58. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The devil is not impersonal like stones or bureaucracies; he is a non-person. The Devil has become all that God is not; he is not beyond personality--he is without it. His purpose in creation is not to destroy God; he knows that he cannot do that. He wants to draw us into the vortex of non-personhood that he has become, and the nothingness of non-being that he is becoming. Satan, in short, aims to take as many of us with him as he can. Nigel Wright, The Satan Syndrome, Zondervan, 1990, p. 163. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Satan promises the best, but pays with the worst; he promises honor and pays with disgrace; he promises pleasure and pays with pain; he promises profit and pays with loss; he promises life and pays with death. Thomas Brooks. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary Possible Biblical references to Satan: Genesis 3:1-14 He was disguised under the Edenic serpent Genesis 3:15 He is the serpent\'s seed Isaiah 14:12 He was Lucifer, son of the morning before the fall Ezekiel 28:14 He was the anointed cherub that covers 1 Chronicles 21:1 He energized David to evil Job 1:7-2:10 He accused and afflicted Job Zecheriah 3:1-9 He opposes unbelieving Israel prefigured by Joshuathe priest Matthew 4:3 He is the tempter Matthew 12:24; Acts 10:38 He is the prince of the demons 1 Timothy 4:1-6 He instigates false doctrine Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:10-11 He perverts the Word of God Matthew 12:22-29 He works in demon possession Zechariah 3:1 He is Satan, the Adversary Luke 4:13 He is the devil, the slanderer John 13:2,27 He caused Judas to betray Christ Acts 5:3 and Ananias to lie 2 Corinthians 4:4 He blinds people spiritually 1 Peter 5:8 He seeks to harm believers Ephesians 6:11-12 He heads a celestial hierarchy of evil Ephesians 2:2 He indwells the unsaved John 8:44 He was branded \"a liar\" and \"the father of lies\"by Jesus 2 Thessalonians 2:9 He works diabolic miracles John 8:44 He is a murderer John 12:31; 14:30 He is the prince of this world Luke 13:16 He blinds people physically and spiritually Matthew 25:41 He is a fallen angel Matthew 13:38-39 He sows tares Matthew 13:19 and snatches away the Word Revelation 20:1-3 He will be bound during the millennium Matthew 13:39 He is \"the enemy\" Matthew 13:38 \"the evil one\" Ephesians 6:10-20 He is routed by Spirit-directed prayer 1 Peter 5:8-9 He is overcome by faith 1 Thessalonians 2:18 He hinders God\'s will in believers Revelation 12:9 He is the deceiver Revelation 12:9; 20:2 He is the dragon, that old serpent Luke 10:18 He fell from a sinless high estate Luke 22:31 He viewed Simon Peter as a target Revelation 2:9 He has a synagogue of legalists who deny God\'s grace in Christ John 3:8, 10 His children are unsaved people Matthew 25:41; Rev 20:10 His ultimate fate is Gehenna Merrill F. Unger, The New Unger\'s Bible Handbook, Revised Gary N. Larson, Moody Press, Chicago, 1984, p. 407. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- J. O. Sanders offers this interesting description of the counterfiet nature of Satan: Satan has his own trinity--the devil, the beast, and the false prophet (Revelation 16:13). He has his own church, \"a synagogue of Satan\" (Revelation 2:9). He has his own ministers, \"ministers of Satan\" (2 Corinthians 11:4-5). He has formulated his own system of theology \"doctrines of demons\" (1 Timothy 4:1). He has established his own sacrificial system; \"The Gentiles...sacrifice to demons\" (1 Corinthians 10:20). He has his own communion service, \"the cup of demons...and the table of demons\" (1 Corinthians 10:21). His ministers proclaim his own gospel, \"a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you\" (Galatians 1:7-8). He has his own throne (Revelation 13:2) and his own worshipers (Revelation 13:4). So he has developed a thorough imitation of Christianity, viewed as a system of religion. In his role as the imitator of God, he inspires false christs, self-constituted messiahs (Matthew 24:4-5). He employs false teachers who are specialists in his \"theology,\" to bring in \"destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them\" (2 Peter 2:1). They are adept at mixing truth and error in such proportions as to make error palatable. They carry on their teaching surreptitiously and often anonymously. He sends out false prophets. \"And many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many\" (Matthew 24:11). He introduces false brethren into the church, who \"had sneaked in to spy out our liberty...in order to bring us into bondage\" (Galatians 2:4). He sponsors false apostles who imitate the true (2 Corinthians 11:13). J.O. Sanders, Satan is No Myth, Moody, 1975, pp. 35-36. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- J. O. Sanders offers this summary of the strategies of Satan: Strategies of Satan with unbelievers: 1) blinding the minds of the unregenerate (2 Cor. 4:4). 2) snatching away the good seed of the word (Matthew 13:19). 3) lulling the unbeliever into a false sense of security (Luke 11:21). 4) laying snares for the unwary (2 Timothy 2:25-26). 5) masquerading as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:13-14). 6) deceiving those whose minds are not subject to the Word of truth (Rev 12:9). 7) mixing truth with error (Matthew 13:25-8). Strategies of Satan with believers: 1) annihilate the church or neutralize its witness from within (Acts 5:1-6). 2) virulent persecution from without. 3) smother its witness by according it great popularity. 4) disturb the unity of the church by creating discord and division 5) subversion of the church through apostasy and heresy (2 Peter 2:1-2). J.O. Sanders, Satan is No Myth, Moody, 1975, p. 72ff. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Statistics and Research Even those who claim to be Born Again are not necessarily firmly grounded in the truths of the Bible. In his book which provides a statistical analysis of religious beliefs in America, George Barna cites several fascinating statistics which are based on a national survey. In chapter four he states, \"The Devil, or Satan, is not a living being but is a symbol of evil.\" Then asking that segment of his survey respondents who have identified themselves at being Born Again, he states, \"Do you agree strongly, agree somewhat, disagree somewhat, or disagree strongly with that statement?\" The Born Again population reply with 32 percent agreeing strongly, 11 percent agreeing somewhat and 5 percent did not know. Thus, of the total number responding, 48 percent either agreed that Satan is only symbolic or did not know! Should it then be surprising that a few pages later Barna would receive some very startling responses? His next question, \"Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, and others all pray to the same God, even though they use different names for that God.\" Again, the respondents were asked to agree strongly, agree somewhat, disagree somewhat or disagree strongly. Of that population surveyed who identified themselves as Born Again, 30 percent agreed strongly, 18 percent agreed somewhat and 12 percent did not know. That is a total of 60 percent! (What Americans Believe, pp. 206-212). Watchman Expositor, Vol. 10, No. 4, 1993, p. 31. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SBS 특별 다큐를 보고/ 이단들(거듭나지 않은 자를 포함하여)에는 예수님을 보는 눈이 없다/ 2009-10-24
SBS 특별 다큐를 보고/ 이단들(거듭나지 않은 자를 포함하여)에는 예수님을 보는 눈이 없다 며칠 전 SBS에서 특집 다큐로 신의길 인간의 길이란 프로를 2주간에 걸쳐 토, 일 양 이틀 방영한 바 있다. 나는 상천하지에 거룩하심과 영화로우심이 오직 유일하신 분에 대한 거짓과 날조로 가득찬 중상모략을 공영방송에서 했다는 사실에 대하여 분노를 금할 수 없다. 이 방송의 배경에는 어떤 음모가 있음을 분명히 하며 이는 그 뒤 배경에는 무슬림과 막대한 석유자본을 가지고 세계를 무슬림화하려는 세력에 의하여 그 자본으로 제작을 하였거나 적어도 그들의 영향을 받은 자들에 의하여 제작되었다는 의심을 지울 수 없다. 그의 제작 의도가 기독교와 유대교와 무슬림의 공존과 화평 및 평화를 위해서라고는 하지만 이는 명목상 허울 좋은 구실이고 필자는 그들의 그러한 구실 속에서 그 들의 목적하는 바가 어디에 있는지 짐작해 볼 수 있었으며 그들의 목적하는 바가 이로서 백일 하에 드러났다고 사료된다. 이 프로그램에 출연한 기독교 측 사람이라는 자들은 한결같이 거듭남에는 근처도 가보지 않은 자들이거나 마귀적이며 자유신학적인 견해를 갖은 이단자들의 소리 일색이라는 것에 SBS 측에 분노를 금치 못하며 또한 이를 통탄해 마지 않는 바이다. 이러한 것을 볼 때 SBS 측의 의도가 분명하며 또한 이는 이 방송을 통하여 교회말살음모에 한 축을 맡았다고 본다. 특히 무슬림에 대한 호의적인 의도는 바로 그러한 음모를 뒤받침했다는 결정적인 증거라고 본다. 또한 미국의 예를 들면서 기독교국가에서 살인 강도 강간이 그렇지 않은 국가에 비하여 월등하며 죄수들과 감옥이 더욱 많다는 것을 이 프로에서는 강조하면서 교회야 잘 못 태어난 집단이며 쓸어버리고 말삸시켜야 할 집단임을 은근히 강조하는 모양을 보여 주었다. 낙태 자살 등 생명 경시 풍조한 만연한 사실을 지적하며 어찌 소위 기독교국가란데서 그럴 수 있느냐는 듯이 비웃고 있었다. 종교적인 부시에 대한 것도 나왔다. 백번 옳은 말이다. 그리고 비웃음을 사는 것도 당연한 것이다. 미국이 기독교국가이기 때문에 그러한 모양이 있을 수 있다는 것은 당연한 귀결이다. 그러나 만약 미국이 종교적으로 기독교국가가 아니고 거듭난 생명들로 가득찼다고 한다면 이와는 아주 다른 현상이 일어났을 것이다. 종교인은 하나님을 두려워 하지 않는다. 다만 종교인들은 하나님을 무슨 미신적인 존재로만 인식할 뿐이다. 그래서 종교인들은 하나님의 이름으로 악을 서슴지 않으며 하나님으로 이름으로 온갖 추잡한 짓을 다 저지르고 일삼으면서도 그로 인하여 하나께서 다치시고 그 이름에 치욕과 모욕을 당하시고 그로 인하여 분노하시면 슬퍼하시는 것을 전혀 개의치 않는다. 전혀 부끄러움이나 양심의 가책을 갖지를 않는다는 뜻이다. 그러기 때문에 종교적인 국가인 미국이 그렇게 될 수 밖에 없는 것이며 이는 아주 당연한 귀결인 것이다. 우리나라 역시 거듭난 사람들보다 종교인들이 더 많으므로 또한 주님의 이름에 먹칠하고도 부끄러움이나 양심에 가책을 느끼는 자들이 드물며 마귀와 사단의 졸개들만 득실거리며 바로 SBS 특집 다큐같은 프로그램을 제작하는 배경이 되어 주고 있는 것이다. 따라서 예수님을 볼 수 있는 사람은 따로 있으며 그 밖에 지옥 자식들에게는 예수님을 볼 수 있는 눈이 없다라는 과거 필자가 쓴 글을 여기에 올리는 바 과연 거듭남과 예수님을 보는 능력과 어떠한 함수 관계가 있는지 독자들에게 살펴 볼 것을 권해 드리는 바이다. 이단들에는 예수님을 보는 눈이 없다 금년 초 예수의 마지막 유혹이라는 영화가 상영된 적이 있다. 나는 이 영화의 상영저지를 위하여 가처분 신청을 재판부에 내었던 적이 있었다. 그런데 가처분신청이 기각되었다. 상고를 하려고 하던 차 영화가 단기간에 끝나버려 정식재판을 청구하려던 생각을 바꾸었다. 이미 주님께서 기도 중 꿈을 통하여 알려주신 바가 있기에 예상하고 있던 바였다. 그리고 이러한 현상은 주께서 당신의 명예회복을 위한 증거로 남기기 위하심이라는 것을 깨닫게 되었다. 최근에 이르러서는 적그리스도적인 소설이나 영화, 뮤지컬들이 문학 혹은 예술이라는 장르를 빌어서 인간들을 미혹시키며 이러한 것들이 인간영혼의 사냥과 영혼의 도적질하는 사단의 도구로 쓰이고 있다. 이단 혹은 적그리스도의 무리들의 눈에는 우리 주님이 인간 예수로만 보일 뿐이다. 눈의 기능은 모양 형태 빛깔 및 옳고 그름을 분간할 수 있도록 도와주며 시력이 좋고 나쁨에 따라서 간혹 잘 못된 정보를 주기도 하지만 시야에 나타나는 모든 것에 대한 총체적인 정보를 제공해 준다. 그러므로 좋은 눈을 갖는 것을 사물에 대한 바른 판단력을 갖는데 필수라고 해도 과언이 아니다. 눈에는 두 종류가 있다. 첫째로 흔히 말하고 있는 눈 즉 육체 가운데 하나인 눈이다. 즉 육신적인 눈 혹은 육적인 눈이다. 그리고 두 번째로는 영적인 세계를 볼 수 있는 눈이다. 성경에 보면 육신적인 소경에 대한 언급이 있는 반면 영적인 소경에 대한 언급이 되어 있다. 바디메오의 경우(막10;46-52)에는 바로 육신적인 장님을 일컫는 것이고 “소경이 소경을 인도한다든가 (마15;14, 눅6:39)” “너희가 눈이 있어도 보지 못한다(막8:18)”고 하신 예수님의 말씀 등은 바로 영적인 장님을 일컬어 하신 말씀이다. 여기서 필자가 언급하고자 하는 것은 바로 후자인 영적인 눈에 관해서이다. 육적인 눈은 일반적으로 어미의 모태에서 생성되어져서 모태에서 나오고 나서 그 기능을 수행하게 되지만 영적인 눈은 하나님으로부터 태어나야만 볼 수 있는 인식하고 인지할 수 있는 능력이 생기며 비로소 그 영적인 눈이 개안되어 그 기능이 발휘되어진다. 이 말씀은 다시 말하면 물과 성령으로 거듭난 자만이 영적인 눈을 소유할 수 있다는 말씀이다. 이 눈에 대하여 알기 쉽게 달리 말해야 한다면 믿음(혹은 믿음의 눈)을 일컬어 영적인 눈이라고 한다는 것이다. 이러한 믿음은 하나님으로부터 성령님을 통하여 주어지는 선물(엡2:8)이며, 따라서 성경은 이러한 현상을 일컬어 거듭난 자만이 천국을 볼 수 있다(요3:5)라고 말씀하신 것이다. 즉 거듭나야 비로소 예수님을 볼 수 있다는 뜻이다. 필자가 참으로 안타까워하며 반드시 시정되어져야 한다고 생각하는 것 중에 하나는 성경의 거룩한 말씀들이 세상에서 잘 못 사용되어지는 것이다. 십자가라던가 거듭남 같은 말씀 등은 거룩하신 말씀들이고 성어(聖語) 들이다. 그 중에 십자가와 같은 말씀은 조금은 그 뜻이 유사하게 사용되고 있지만(물론 영적으로 구속에 대한 의미는 전혀 찾아볼 수 없지만 그래도 남을 대신해 희생한다는 뜻은 유사하다고 생각되기 때문에) “거듭남”에 대해서는 전혀 다른 용도로 쓰여 지고 있다. 그에 대해 나는 교회에서 소위 선생이라는 목사들에 의해 잘 못 가르쳐 지고 사용되기 시작하였기 때문에, 그로 인하여 나타난 반작용이요 그에 대한 부작용이라고 생각한다. 주로 세상에서 이 거듭남에 대하여 사용되어질 때는 변화 혹은 보다 진전이 되고 발전되어진 모습을 일컬어서 사용할 때 사용하고 있다. 예를 든다면 월드컵에서 대표선수의 분전을 보고 “우리 축구가 거듭났다”라는 표현을 사용하는 것과 같은 부류이다. 다시 말해 거듭남이 잘 못 사용되어진 이유는 선생(목사)들이 가르치기를 거듭남을 성화와 같은 뜻으로 가르쳐 왔기 때문이다. 얼마 전에 교계를 대표하시는 분 중의 하나로서 모 교단의 은퇴 목사님이신 이 모 목사님과 대화를 나눈 기회가 있었는데 그때 그 목사님께서는 필자에게 거듭남에 대하여 상세하게 질문하신 적이 있다. 목사들 가운데 거듭남에 무지한 사람들도 많이 있다는 것을 주지시켜 주시면서… 교회에서 기도(대표기도)하는 내용을 보면 “하나님 아버지! 혹은 주여!” 이렇게 해놓고는 “거듭나게 해 주시옵소서! 거듭나게 해 주시옵소서!”하고 기도하는 것을 심심찮게 목격한다. 하나님께서 웃으실 기도내용이다. 그 것도 교회(회중)를 대표하여 기도하는 기도자가 말이다. 대표 기도자는 교회를 대표해서 기도하도록 세움을 입은 자다. 그런데 그런 사람이 거듭남이 없는 사람이거나, 거듭났다고 하더라도 거듭남이 무엇이지 조차 모른다면 정말 심각한 일이다. 또한 거듭남이 무엇인지 조차도 모르는 사람을 교회와 회중을 대표하여 세우는 것은 아주 잘못된 것이다. 거듭나지 않은 사람이 어찌 교회를 대표할 수 있단 말인가? 따라서 그 기도는 물론 예배 자체가 진정한 예배일 수 없는 것이다. 예배는 신령과 진정 즉 성령의 감화와 감동하심 가운데 예수 그리스도의 구속의 피가 예배 자들의 심령 가운데 감사와 찬양으로 다가오며 성령께서 예배자들의 마음을 감동과 감격케 하심으로 예배자들은 온 마음과 온 몸을 다해 드려지는 것이다. 즉 이것이 신령한 예배요, 진정한 예배이며 참 예배인 것이다. 이에 대하여 계시록에서는 아주 잘 보여주고 있다. 계시록에서도 보여주시고 있듯이 이것이 천국의 모습이며 어린양과 성부에 대한 찬양인 것이다(계5:8-14). 즉 예배는 감사와 더불어 찬양으로 드려지는 것이다. 아무런 감동도 없이 감사와 감격도 없이 형식적으로 치러지는 의식, 그리스도의 피 없는 제사는 하나님께서 흠향(歆饗) 하시지 아니하실 뿐만 아니라 도리어 사단은 이러한 예배를 가로채어 자신의 영광 받으려 한다.는 것이다. 또한 사단은 이러한 피 없는 감동과 감격이 없는 예배를 조장하고 그러한 환경 속에서 이단을 싹 트여 자라게 하는 것이다. 또한 아버지 혹은 주여 하는 호칭은 거듭난 자들만이 즉 성도들만이 허락되어진 특권이다. 그런데 거듭나지도 않은 자들이 이 말을 쓴다면 웃기는 말이 되지 않겠는가? 거듭나지 않은 자들이 거듭나게 하여 주십사 하는 것은 당연할 소원이 되어야 하며 또 거듭남을 바라는 것은 마땅하다. 그러나 거듭난 자들이 다시 거듭나게 해달라고 하는 것은 참으로 웃겨도 보통 웃기는 것이 아닌 것이다. 아마 그 거듭나게 해달라고 하는 것은 변화시켜 달라는 내용일 것이며 성화 시켜달라(주님의 성품 혹은 인격을 닮게 하여 주십사)는 내용일 것이다.
SCIENCE Finagle\'s rules for scientific research 1. Do not believe in miracles--rely on them 2. Experiments must be reproducible-- they should fail the same way. 3. Always verify your witchcraft. 4. First draw your curves--then plot your readings 5. Be sure to obtain meteorological information before leaving on vacation. 6. A record of data is useful--it indicates that you\'ve been working. 7. Experience is directly proportional to equipment ruined. 8. To study a subject best--understand it thoroughly before you start. 9. In case of doubt--make it sound convincing.
SEARS Young Richard Sears was a railroad agent in Redwood, Minnesota when he discovered he could order watches from the manufacturer, then reship them to agents down the line who sold them to local people. Sears launched a mail-order company, later teaming up with Alvah Roebuck. By 1894, Sears Roebuck & Co. had a 300-page catalog, but orders rolled in so fast that Sears simply burned order forms when he fell too far behind! A brilliant businessman named Julius Rosenwald brought order to the chaos, making many changes and innovations as he made the company work. By 1908, Sears himself was out of the picture, but even in Rosenwald\'s massive overhaul of the business, he was wise enough to preserve the best of the past -- the \"book\", the famous Sears catalog, which has earned a place in American folklore. Today in the Word, September 8, 1992.
SECOND CHANCE (see also SALVAGED) On New Year\\\'s Day, 1929, Georgia Tech played University of California in the Rose Bowl. In that game a man named Roy Riegels recovered a fumble for California. Somehow, he became confused and started running 65 yards in the wrong direction. One of his teammates, Benny Lom, outdistanced him and downed him just before he scored for the opposing team. When California attempted to punt, Tech blocked the kick and scored a safety which was the ultimate margin of victory. That strange play came in the first half, and everyone who was watching the game was asking the same question: \\\"What will Coach Nibbs Price do with Roy Riegels in the second half?\\\" The men filed off the field and went into the dressing room. They sat down on the benches and on the floor, all but Riegels. He put his blanket around his shoulders, sat down in a corner, put his face in his hands, and cried like a baby. If you have played football, you know that a coach usually has a great deal to say to his team during half time. That day Coach Price was quiet. No doubt he was trying to decide what to do with Riegels. Then the timekeeper came in and announced that there were three minutes before playing time. Coach Price looked at the team and said simply, \\\"Men the same team that played the first half will start the second.\\\" The players got up and started out, all but Riegels. He did not budge. The coach looked back and called to him again; still he didn\\\'t move. Coach Price went over to where Riegels sat and said, \\\"Roy, didn\\\'t you hear me? The same team that played the first half will start the second.\\\" Then Roy Riegels looked up and his cheeks were wet with a strong man\\\'s tears. \\\"Coach,\\\" he said, \\\"I can\\\'t do it to save my life. I\\\'ve ruined you, I\\\'ve ruined the University of California, I\\\'ve ruined myself. I couldn\\\'t face that crowd in the stadium to save my life.\\\" Then Coach Price reached out and put his hand on Riegel\\\'s shoulder and said to him: \\\"Roy, get up and go on back; the game is only half over.\\\" And Roy Riegels went back, and those Tech men will tell you that they have never seen a man play football as Roy Riegels played that second half. Haddon W. Robinson, Christian Medical Society Journal. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Police stopped a teen-age girl in Coeur d\\\'Alene, Idaho, after complaints that a car had been seen going around her neighborhood in reverse for some time. The girl told police that her parents had let her use the car, but she had put too much mileage on it. \\\"I was just trying to unwind some of it,\\\" she said. Oops, The Book of Blunders. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thomas A. Edison was working on a crazy contraption called a \\\"light bulb\\\" and it took a whole team of men 24 straight hours to put just one together. The story goes that when Edison was finished with one light bulb, he gave it to a young boy helper, who nervously carried it up the stairs. Step by step he cautiously watched his hands, obviously frightened of dropping such a priceless piece of work. You\\\'ve probably guessed what happened by now; the poor young fellow dropped the bulb at the top of the stairs. It took the entire team of men twenty-four more hours to make another bulb. Finally, tired and ready for a break, Edison was ready to have his bulb carried up the stairs. He gave it to the same young boy who dropped the first one. That\\\'s true forgiveness. James Newton, Uncommon Friends: Life with Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, Alexis Carrel and Charles Lindbergh, 1989, p.22. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Humor A college-football coach was faced with the possibility that his star player might be declared academically ineligible, so he pleaded with the math professor not to flunk the kid. \\\"Tell you what, coach,\\\" said the professor, \\\"I\\\'ll ask him a question in your presence. If he gets it right, I\\\'ll pass him.\\\" The athlete was called in, and the prof asked, \\\"What\\\'s two and two?\\\" \\\"Four,\\\" replied the player. Frantically the coach cried, \\\"Give him another chance! Give him another chance!\\\" Sports Illustrated. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SECOND COMING OF CHRIST After 14 years of studying the Bible, William Miller became convinced that Christ would return in 1843. When Miller announced April 3 as the day, some disciples went to mountaintops, hoping for a head start to heaven. Others were in graveyards, planning to ascend in reunion with their departed loved ones. Philadelphia society ladies clustered together outside town to avoid entering God\'s kingdom amid the common herd. When April 4 dawned as usual the Millerites were disillusioned, but they took heart. Their leader had predicted a range of dates for Christ\'s return. They still had until March 21, 1844. The devout continued to make ready, but again they were disappointed. A third date--October 22, 1844--was set, but it also passed. Today in the Word, December 20, 1991. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- During his 1960 presidential campaign, John F. Kennedy often closed his speeches with the story of Colonel Davenport, the Speaker of the Connecticut House of Representatives: On May 19th, 1780 the sky of Hartford darkened ominously, and some of the representatives, glancing out the windows, feared the end was at hand. Quelling a clamor for immediate adjournment, Davenport rose and said, \"The Day of Judgment is either approaching or it is not. If it is not, there is no cause for adjournment. If it is, I choose to be found doing my duty. Therefore, I wish that candles be brought.\" Rather than fearing what is to come, we are to be faithful till Christ returns. Instead of fearing the dark, we\'re to be lights as we watch and wait. Harry Heintz. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Commentary Biblical prophecy provides some of the greatest encouragement and hope available to us today. Just as the Old Testament is saturated with prophecies concerning Christ\'s first advent, so both testaments are filled with references to the second coming of Christ. One scholar has estimated that there are 1,845 references to Christ\'s second coming in the Old Testament, where 17 books give it prominence. In the 260 chapters of the New Testament, there are 318 references to the second advent of Christ--an amazing 1 out of every 30 verses. Twenty-three of the 27 New Testament books refer to this great event. For every prophecy in the Bible concerning Christ\'s first advent, there are 8 which look forward to His second! Today in the Word, April, 1989, p. 27. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Statistics and Research The belief that Jesus Christ will return to earth someday is held by 62 percent of all Americans. George Gallup, \"Religion in America,\" Leadership, Fall, 1987. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SECOND GUESSING As physics professor at Adelaide University in Australia, Sir Kerr Grant used to illustrate the time of descent of a free-falling body by allowing a heavy ball suspended from the lecture-theater roof trusses to fall some 30 feet and be caught in a sand bucket. Each year the bucket was lined up meticulously to catch the ball -- and each year students secretly moved the bucket to one side, so that the ball crashed thunderously to the floor. Tiring of this rather stale joke, the professor traced a chalk line around the bucket. The students moved the bucket as usual, traced a chalk mark around the new position, rubbed it out and replaced the bucket in its original spot. \"Aha!\" the professor explained, seeing the faint outline of the erased chalk mark. He moved the bucket over it and released the ball -- which thundered to the floor as usual. Reader\'s Digest.
SECRET He who has a secret should not only hide it, but hide that he has it to hide. Thomas Carlyle. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The difference between private enterprise and government: The formulas for making Coca-Cola and Kentucky Fried Chicken are still secrets. How to make a hydrogen bomb is on your newsstand. Robert Orben, in Reader\'s Digest, March, 1980, p. 57. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Duke of Wellington is best remembered as the general who defeated Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815. During his earlier service in India, Wellington was in charge of negotiations after the battle of Assaye. The emissary of an Indian ruler, anxious to know what territories would be ceded to his master, tried in various ways to get the information. Finally, he offered Wellingtron a large sum of money. \"Can you keep a secret?\" asked Wellington. \"Yes, indeed,\" the man said eagerly. \"So can I,\" replied Wellington. Today in the Word, July, 1990, p. 35. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SECULARISM February 24, 1993, in the U.S. Supreme Court. The case: Lamb\'s Chapel and John Steigerwald v. Center Moriches Union Free School District. A group of Christians wanted to show a film after hours in a public facility. Apparently, religious hostility has reached the point in this nation where, because the content of that film was deemed \"religious\" by the State of N.Y., it posed a perceived danger sufficient to warrant spending tax dollars to litigate a case of this nature all the way to the highest court of the land. Mr. Justice Scalia questioned the attorney for the school board: Question: you are here representing both respondents [the school board and the state of N.Y.]... in this argument, and the Attorney General of N.Y., in his brief defending the N.Y. rule says that...\'Religious advocacy serves the community only in the eyes of its adherent and yields a benefit only to those who already believe.\' Does New York State--I grew up in New York State and in those days they used to have a tax exemption for religious property. Is that still there? Counsel: Yes, your Honor it still is. Question: But they\'ve changed their view, apparently, that-- Counsel: Well, your Honor-- Question: You see--it used to be thought that religion--it didn\'t matter what religion, but it--some code of morality always went with it and was thought that...what was called a God-fearing person might be less likely to mug me and rape my sister. That apparently is not the view of New York anymore. Counsel: Well I\'m not sure that that\'s -- Question: Has this new regime worked very well? Keith A. Fournier, Quoted in Religious Cleansing in the American Republic, American Center for Law and Justice. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The United Nations complex sits on sixteen acres of New York City\'s choicest real estate, bordering the East River and Manhattan. The lean, immense Secretariat building rises into the sky, the sun reflecting off its window walls. Bright flags of the nations of the world fly in the breezes off the river; the most prominent is the blue and white UN flag, its two white reeds of olive branches surrounding the world. A visitor is immediately struck by the grandeur of the building, stirred by the sight of dignitaries stepping out of black limousines to cross the massive plaza. He realizes that if this place represents the powers of the world, one might well want to see the place of worship, where the nations bow before the One under whose rule they govern. The information personnel are bemused. \"The chapel. We don\'t have a chapel. If there is one, I believe it\'s across the street.\" The visitor darts across the thoroughfare, dodging New York\'s taxis, and successfully arrives at the opposite building\'s security-clearance desk. \"Well, there\'s a chapel here,\" responds the officer, \"But it\'s not associated with the UN.\" He thumbs through a directory. \"Oh, I see, all right, here it is. It\'s across the street--and tell them you\'re looking for the mediation room.\" Again the visitor dashes across the pavement. An attendant tells him that the room is not open to the public; it\'s a \"nonessential area,\" and there has been a personnel cutback. But a security guard will escort the visitor through long, crowded hallways and swinging glass doors. Again, there is the pervasive sense of weighty matters being discussed in the noble pursuit of world peace. The guide pauses at an unmarked door. He unlocks it and gingerly pushes it open. The small room is devoid of people or decoration. The walls are stark white. There are no windows. A few wicker stools surround a large square rock at the center of the room. It is very quiet. But there is no altar, rug, vase, candle, or symbol of any type of religious worship. Ceiling lights create bright spots of illumination on the front wall. One focuses on a piece of modern art: steel squares and ovals. Beyond the abstract shapes, there is nothing in those bright circles of light. They are focused on a void. And it is in that void that the visitor suddenly sees the soul of the brave new world. Chuck Colson, Kingdoms in Conflict, pp 182-3. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Statistics and Research In \"One Nation Under God,\" a statistical map of American religion, summarized in the Nov 29 issue of Newsweek, Barry Kosmin and Seymour Lachman of the City University of New York have assembled data from 113,000 respondents, by far the most comprehensive random sample of detailed religious preference ever collected. The survey determined that nearly 1/3 of the adult U.S. population (18 and over) is now \"totally secular\" in its spiritual outlook! It also found that only 19 percent of adult Americans--about 36 million people--regularly practice their faith. The rest are described as \"moderately religious\" (22 percent), \"barely\" or nominally religious (29 percent) and agnostics and atheists (7.5 percent). The survey has an important message for the religiously and politically conservative who are interested in reversing the downward cultural spiral. It is unlikely that the 19 percent whose faith affects their lives and world view can change the moral and social conditions of our country through political means alone. Cal Thomas, 1993 Los Angeles Times Syndicate, quoting Newsweek, Nov. 29, 1993, p. 82. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A Brookings Institution study condemns secularism as providing an inadequate foundation for democracy in America. It was the first time the think tank had sponsored a study on religion. Through religion, the study says, \"human rights are rooted in the moral worth with which a loving Creator has endowed each human soul, and social authority is legitimized by making it answerable to transcendent moral law.\" The study rejects the argument that strict separation of church and state is needed. \"A society that excludes religion totally from its public life, that seems to regard religion as something from which public life must be protected, is bound to foster the impression that religion is either irrelevant or harmful,\" the study says. Authored by James Reichley, the three-year study came as a surprise to those accustomed to the Brookings Institution\'s liberal bent on social issues. Reichley, a former editor of Fortune magazine, is a member of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Christianity Today, February 7, 1986. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SECURITY (see also ETERNAL SECURITY) A group of botanists went on an expedition into a hard-to-reach location in the Alps, searching for new varieties of flowers. One day as a scientist looked through his binoculars, he saw a beautiful, rare species growing at the bottom of a deep ravine. To reach it, someone would have to be lowered into that gorge. Noticing a local youngster standing nearby, the man asked him if he would help them get the flower. The boy was told that a rope would be tied around his waist and the men would then lower him to the floor of the canyon. Excited yet apprehensive about the adventure, the youngster peered thoughtfully into the chasm. \"Wait,\" he said, \"I\'ll be back,\" and off he dashed. When he returned, he was accompanied by an older man. Approaching the head botanist, the boy said, \"I\'ll go over the cliff now and get the flower for you, but this man must hold onto the rope. He\'s my dad!\" Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Watchman Nee tells about a new convert who came in deep distress to see him. \"No matter how much I pray, no matter how hard I try, I simply cannot seem to be faithful to my Lord. I think I\'m losing my salvation.\" Nee said, \"Do you see this dog here? He is my dog. He is house-trained; he never makes a mess; he is obedient; he is a pure delight to me. Out in the kitchen I have a son, a baby son. He makes a mess, he throws his food around, he fouls his clothes, he is a total mess. But who is going to inherit my kingdom? Not my dog; my son is my heir. You are Jesus Christ\'s heir because it is for you that He died.\" We are Christ\'s heirs, not through our perfection but by means of His grace. Watchman Nee. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- F.B. Meyer wrote about two Germans who wanted to climb the Matterhorn. They hired three guides and began their ascent at the steepest and most slippery part. The men roped themselves together in this order: guide, traveler, guide, traveler, guide. They had gone only a little way up the side when the last man lost his footing. He was held up temporarily by the other four, because each had a toehold in the niches they had cut in the ice. But then the next man slipped, and he pulled down the two above him. The only one to stand firm was the first guide, who had driven a spike deep into the ice. Because he held his ground, all the men beneath him regained their footing. F.B. Meyer concluded his story by drawing a spiritual application. He said, \"I am like one of those men who slipped, but thank God, I am bound in a living partnership to Christ. And because He stands, I will never perish.\" Our Daily Bread. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Morris Mandel, on security: When God made the oyster, he guaranteed his absolute economic and social security. He built the oyster a house, his shell, to shelter and protect him from his enemies. When hungry, the oyster simply opens his shell and food rushes in for him. He has freedom from want. But when God made the eagle he declared: \"The blue sky is the limit -- build your own house!\" So the eagle built on the highest mountain. Storms threaten him every day. For food he flies through miles of rain and snow and wind. But think of it, the eagle, not the oyster, is the emblem of America. The Jewish Press. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The story is told of a monastery in Portugal, perched high on a 3,000 foot cliff and accessible only by a terrifying ride in a swaying basket. The basket is pulled with a single rope by several strong men, perspiring under the strain of the fully loaded basket. One American tourist who visited the site got nervous halfway up the cliff when he noticed that the rope was old and frayed. Hoping to relive his fear he asked, \"How often do you change the rope?\" The monk in charge replied, \"Whenever it breaks!\" Daily Walk, March 30, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- During initial construction on the Golden Gate Bridge, no safety devices were used and 23 men fell to their deaths. For the final part of the project, however, a large net was used as a safety precaution. At least 10 men fell into it and were saved from certain death. Even more interesting, however, is the fact that 25% more work was accomplished after the net was installed. Why? Because the men had the assurance of their safety, and they were free to wholeheartedly serve the project. Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The 3-year old felt secure in his father\'s arms as Dad stood in the middle of the pool. But Dad, for fun, began walking slowly toward the deep end, gently chanting, \"Deeper and deeper and deeper,\" as the water rose higher and higher on the child. The lad\'s face registered increasing degrees of panic, as he held all the more tightly to his father, who, of course, easily touched the bottom. Had the little boy been able to analyze his situation, he\'d have realized there was no reason for increased anxiety. The water\'s depth in ANY part of the pool was over his head. Even in the shallowest part, had he not been held up, he\'d have drowned. His safety anywhere in that pool depended on Dad. At various points in our lives, all of us feel we\'re getting \"out of our depth\" -- problems abound, a job is lost, someone dies. Our temptation is to panic, for we feel we\'ve lost control. Yet, as with the child in the pool, the truth is we\'ve never been in control over the most valuable things of life. We\'ve always been held up by the grace of God, our Father, and that does not change. God is never out of his depth, and therefore we\'re safe when we\'re \"going deeper\" than we\'ve ever been. Charles Ryrie, So Great Salvation, Victor Books, 1989, p. 137ff. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A manager and a sales rep stood looking at a map on which colored pins indicated the company representative in each area. \"I\'m not going to fire you, Wilson,\" the manager said, \"but I\'m loosening your pin a bit just to emphasize the insecurity of your situation.\" Bits & Pieces, May 26, 1994. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------