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February 2007

 

Editorial: Authorities, anxieties, approval, and appreciation

"When you think about the word judgment, what thoughts come to mind?" I asked my Christian Beliefs class. As a rule, the answer would be negative. Occasionally, however, a brave voice would state the opposite. My goal in broaching the subject was to emphasize the truth that judgment, whether divine or human, when correctly conducted, is the best thing that could happen.

 

Book Review: More than a Prophet

Truth is progressive. This idea is foundational to Adventist epistemology, and ultimately, for a theology of spiritual gifts. More Than a Prophet builds on this concept by arguing that the Adventist denomination needs to grow in its understanding of Ellen White's prophetic life and ministry.

 

Faith and science: a personal story

As a scientist, I do research in the area of radiometric dating and the directly associated earth science concepts of plate tectonics2 and magma cooling rates.3 I am also a person of faith and a strong believer in the importance of Genesis 1-11, but I work daily with data that I don't know how to fit into a short time frame. I would like to find convincing evidence confirming the literalness of the Genesis record, but in my area of research I usually find that the data fits better with a long-age model. Nevertheless, though I may appear to some to bow to the god of evolution in my research, just as Naaman told Elisha, I also declare, "[Y]our servant will not offer burnt offering or sacrifice to any god but the Lord."

 

The final push

It was Martin's first marathon, and he had trained hard. But now the crisis had hit. As I stopped the car and looked at him coming up at a snail's pace, I knew he was in trouble. I started downhill to run with him on the final leg. "Come on, you've come this far, you've done a great job-you can do it!" Slowly but surely, we climbed that hill together. "Look at the top. After this only the stadium and no more hills. The end is in sight. Come on, don't give up now!"

 

Listening to your listeners

Many preachers view preaching as simply a time to speak. They fail to recognize that effective preachers need to listen attentively to their listeners. Every listener provides valuable feedback during the sermon, and wise preachers will learn to listen attentively to this feedback in order to connect more effectively with their congregation.

 

Blogging: a new way to share your faith

What is blogging? Today, another revolution, called blogging, has surfaced. Blogging offers endless possibilities for sharing your faith almost instantly to millions around the globe. Blogging is all about connections-using the magic of Internet.

 

Pastoral care during life passages

Because church members do not routinely ask their pastors directly for pastoral care, ministers need to be creative in order to give that care to them. One way to do this would be to listen to their life experiences during crucial times, especially during life passages such as births, adoptions, birthdays, weddings, baptisms, anniversaries, graduations, retirements, and funerals. Such occasions are windows of opportunity for pastoral care.

 

Being the message

Pigeons have been carrying messages of peace and hope since the day the dove brought the olive leaf back to Noah. In ancient European history, they were seen as saviors during a siege.

 

Descending into administration

Let me be honest. For years, somewhere in the crevices of my heart, lay buried a secret desire to be a leader, to try my hand at church administration- perhaps because of the high pedestal on which I pictured leadership, or maybe I just wanted the challenge of leading and influencing the future in a larger setting than the local church.

 

Sinners in the hands of God

Many earnest Christians have expressed sincere concern over the fairness of God in His executions of retributive justice in hell. Of course, Seventh-day Adventists have been in the forefront of the opposition to the interpretation of hell that teaches an eternity of conscious, endless physical, mental, and emotional torture for the lost.

 

  

 

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