How should the church view sin?

2016 Nov 11

The very first sin was done by Adam and Eve. They chose to to follow what they valued instead of what God valued when they ate the fruit from the tree. God told them to leave it alone. It was a rebellion, and it was a choice of selfishness. (They did what they wanted to do.) They chose to pursue a value (system) that was not of God's value system of sacrificial love for the benefit of others. This is the critical part. Every sin since then is more of the same thing even though there are so many ways to sin!

God does not sin, but this is not just because (as the ultimate authority) he gets to identify sin. God holds us to the same standard that he has for himself (of sacrificial love). However while avoiding sin is difficult for us, it is God's very nature.

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How to recognize a Christian

2016 Jul 6

At Jesus' last Passover supper with his disciples, he gave them some of his most significant teaching: about love, and about the mark of a Christian. He started this by acting out two parables: of foot washing, and of a simple meal. Since these parables teach overlapping points, each gospel includes only one of of the stories.

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Muslims and Christians and God

2016 Jan 23

It has been stated with controversy that "Muslims and Christians worship the same God". But as it has also been said: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." (The Princess Bride)

This statement has at least a couple of implications:

  • We share common ground
  • The God Christians and Muslims worship is one and the same entity

I comfortably agree with the first implication. I cannot agree with the second. So, how should we respond to these thoughts?

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I Want to be Like Him

2016 Jan 14

My step-dad Art passed in 2015. He was an interesting man, but he was not easy. The marriage to my mom was a challenge for both of them because they were strong individuals, each with their own ideas.

My mom has been characterized as being gently very persistent. As someone quite used to her I rarely noticed this, but I do agree with it.

Art was used to being in charge, both in his career and in his own family. At work he was quite competent. At home he was a stern father (with maybe some painful consequences).

I was concerned about what he would become as he aged. Would stubbornness be a challenge? A wise friend has said that whatever you are like, as you get older you become more so.

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