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Showing posts from January, 2021

The Benefits of Being a Christian

Wilfredo Garza lived the life of an illegal immigrant for more than 35 years. Year after year, he eked out a living crossing the border from Mexico into the United States—some days finding work, some days not. Regardless, he was constantly looking over his shoulder. He was caught by the Border Patrol four times during that period and bused back to Mexico every time. Undeterred by each apprehension, he swam back across the Rio Grande to try again.   The cycle would likely have continued for several more years if not for an amazing discovery. One day, Wilfredo worked up the courage to walk into an immigration lawyer’s office. There, incredibly, he found out that his father was born in Texas and spent time working there, which meant that Wilfredo was actually a U.S. citizen.   For more than 35 years, Wilfredo Garza could have possessed the very papers—his father’s birth certificate and work records—that proved his citizenship, and yet he lived in guilt and fear. Now he has a certificate o

Four Witnesses

Suppose someone came to you and told you that your son or daughter was responsible for a hit and run accident. How would you respond?   For the sake of my illustration, let us also suppose that your son or daughter has not told you about the accident and that you do not know the person reporting this news to you.   I think that if I were the parent receiving this information from an unknown and unofficial source, I would certainly want to talk to my son about it and seek corroboration from other sources.   Now, what if my son denied being involved in the supposed hit and run accident, but the person who first reported this incident to me was able to take me to three other eyewitnesses who each saw my son commit the hit and run at a major intersection in town? Suppose further that each of these four witnesses were standing on a different corner of the intersection where the hit and run supposedly took place.   Barring some fanciful explanation for this occurrence, I think I would have t

Faith & Its Effects

Author and Presbyterian pastor Eugene Peterson has written,   What is hazardous in my life is my work as a Christian. Every day I put faith on the line. I have never seen God. In a world where nearly everything can be weighed, explained, quantified, subjected to psychological analysis and scientific control I persist in making the center of my life a God whom no eye hath seen, nor ear heard, whose will no one can probe. That’s a risk. [1]   In 1 John 5:1-5 we learn more about the risk of faith, its nature and its effects. Listen for God’s word to you…   Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.  This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.  In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome,  for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.   Who is it tha