CONNECTIONS News – 05/25/2014

Connecting man to man to God
For week of May 25, 2014
Issue 512

The weekly newsletter of Path Of Life Ministries.
Our mission is to lead men to Jesus Christ and provide opportunity for Christian men to grow in their faith and minister to others.

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You were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only don’t let this freedom be an opportunity to indulge your selfish impulses, but serve each other through love.
– Galatians 5:13 (CEB)

“The love of Christ becomes the mightiest force in the world to the man who is yielded to it.”
– E. W. Kenyon

Christians tend to shy away from it and informed Bible skeptics tend to emphasize it, but there’s no doubt about it: sex and violence are present in the Bible. Some references may be obscured by idiom and cultural differences between now and when they were first written; others may be startlingly clear and uncomfortable to read aloud.

Bible Gateway interviewed Joseph W. Smith III about his book, Sex and Violence in the Bible: A Survey of Explicit Content in the Holy Book (P & R Publishing, 2014).

Q: What prompted you to investigate the subjects of sex and violence in the Bible?
Joseph W. Smith III: Ever hear a sermon on the smelly murder in Judges 3? Or the wife’s gorgeous body in Song of Songs 7? Or the gang-rape in Judges 19? No? Didn’t think so! These are all amazing passages; but we never talk about them! I wanted to do that: to understand exactly what they say — and in the process, to examine how Bible writers deal with graphic content…. Read this in full at

by Jack Wellman
Fathers play a pivotal role in the family and often the success of the father determines the success of the family. What Bible verses show us just how important fathers are in the family?

Fathers Role in the Home
Deuteronomy 6:6-9 “And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

Fathers are commanded to teach their children the commands of the Lord and to do this “when you sit in the house” (when your children are at home with you), “when you walk by the way” (when you go to the park, when you drive then somewhere, at the ballgame, anywhere you go with them), “and when you lie down” (when they go to bed God’s Law and His requirements should always be the last thing they hear about), “and when you rise” (first thing in the morning when possible). A father should be reading to their children daily from the Bible and the Word should be on the “doorposts” of the house or on “your gates” which is the first thing they see when leaving home (the posts could be plaques with Scriptures or the Ten Commandments) and the first thing they see when they get home. The father represents to the family what the high priest was to Israel. He was the spiritual leader and the spiritual head of the family. God will hold them accountable…. Read this in full at

Whether evangelical or mainline, white or black, Catholic or unaffiliated, a new survey finds that many Americans have one thing in common: We exaggerate our church attendance.
But the degree depends on denomination.

White evangelicals are twice as likely to admit they rarely go to church if asked online (17%) vs. over the phone by a live human being (9%). Black Protestants display a similar split (24% online vs. 14% by phone).

But the greater exaggerators (based on differences of 17 to 18 percentage points): white mainline Protestants, Catholics, and the unaffiliated…. Read this in full at

Since its first publication in 1549 during the reign of King Henry VIII, the language of the Book of Common Prayer has saturated English culture. It’s become a venerable work that continues to touch the lives of multitudes around the world. Daily readings from the book are available on Bible Gateway.

Dr. Alan Jacobs (@ayjay) is distinguished professor of the Humanities at Baylor University and former professor of English at Wheaton College. Bible Gateway interviewed Dr. Jacobs about his latest work, The Book of Common Prayer: A Biography (Princeton University Press, 2013).

Q: How did the Book of Common Prayer originate and why was it given that title?
Dr. Jacobs: It originated when Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury in the reign of Henry VIII, decided to put into one book, and in English, all the prayers that in the medieval church had been in Latin scattered in various smaller books. That is, he wanted people to understand their public prayers. And that’s what “common prayer” is: the prayers we pray in common, that is, together in public worship…. Read this in full at

by Clare De Graaf
With all the “I died, went to heaven and back” books and movies out today, it’s made me aware of just how little the average Christian knows what the Bible teaches about what happens one minute after people die.

I’ve also found that most young people believe in heaven, but reject the idea of hell except for child murderers and Hitler. To them it’s inconsistent with the actions of a loving God. Perhaps you’ll find my explanation for the fate of those who have never heard the gospel, helpful for them as well.

So, I hope you’ll use this brief summary with your family or Bible study group. Here’s my disclaimer; much of what I’ve written was gleaned from a wonderful book by Irwin Lutzer, One Minute After You Die. Lutzer is the Senior Pastor of Moody Church in Chicago…. Read this in full at

As a girl grows up, men will come in and out of her life, but the one man who will always be there is her father. A father plays a vital role in his daughter’s journey to adulthood, and below are seven things what a daughter needs from her dad.

1. She needs you to be involved.
A daughter needs her father to be actively interested in her life. “Actively interested” does not refer to the second-long conversation that sometimes happens between a father and daughter when he asks how her day went and she replies with one word. A father should participate in his daughter’s hobbies and activities by displaying interest. For example, if she is interested in collecting coins, take her to coin shows. Use the Internet to learn about rare coins and talk about them. Is your daughter talented in the any sports, such as volleyball? Whether she wants to play or just enjoys watching the games, become an enthusiastic fan and supporter! Show your daughter that you are interested in her life by learning more about it and trying to become a part of it…. Read this in full at

As a boy grows up, there will be many people who influence him and his development into adulthood. As a father, you want to be the main influence in this area. You are, and should be, his most important role model. Below are 7 things to help you be the best role model you can be in your son’s life.

1. He needs you to love his mother.
When you love your wife, or the mother of your son, you are showing him how to treat his mother, his sisters, and all the women he’ll meet in his life. This will set the foundation for the relationships he will have later in his life…. Read this in full at

“We regret losing a purse full of money, but a good thought which has come to us, which we’ve heard or read, a thought which we should have remembered and applied to our life, which could have improved the world- we lose this thought and promptly forget about it, and we do not regret it, though it is more precious than millions.”
– Leo Tolstoy

“A Christian is a person who, though he knows that he is both ignorant and imperfect, believes that he has a clue to reality. He is not willing to settle for the notion that finite things and finite persons constitute the whole of reality, because he can see they all point beyond themselves. In short, he believes in God. There is a radical difference between “believe in” and “believe that.” The person who believes in involves his whole self in an attitude of trust.”
– Elton Trueblood (1900-1994), The Future of the Christian, Harper & Row, 1971, p. 79

by Carol Howard Merritt
If you look around at most denominational meetings, you will see that Baby Boom retirements will have a massive impact on our denominations. Boomers make the majority of those in the pews, in the pulpits, and in power. The first wave of Boomers is in the midst of retiring, so what can we expect? How will this affect us?

I can’t say for sure, but let me look into my crystal ball and tell you what I see…. Read this in full at

by John Burnett
In earlier times, white missionaries traveled from Europe and America to sub-Saharan Africa to save souls.

Today, the trend has reversed. Evangelists from the global south are targeting Americans and Europeans they say are ripe for Christian renewal.

There is no greater example than the Redeemed Christian Church of God. This ambitious Nigerian denomination has established its North American headquarters in Texas, and its goal is nothing less than becoming the next major global religion.

On a Sunday morning, inside a storefront church in Austin called Salvation Center, the worship service exudes the unmistakable spirit of West Africa…. Read this in full at

The only full-sized replica in the world of a Bible created more than 1,000 years ago is returning to its home in South Tyneside.

“It’s an authoritative statement and it’s the best version you can get of the word of God,” said Michelle Brown, Professor Emerita of Medieval Manuscript Studies at the University of London.

Written in the monastic scriptorium in the 7th Century, the Codex Amiatinus was one of three single volume Bibles made at Wearmouth-Jarrow.

Made by monks under the direction of Abbot Ceolfrith, they started the project in AD 692…. Read this in full at

by Joseph Mattera
Recently I viewed the movie God’s Not Dead, starring Kevin Sorbo as an atheistic philosophy college professor who openly challenges a Christian student to prove why his faith is scientifically true. The movie is well-written, has good acting, and is good enough to last more than a month in major movie theaters and make millions of dollars in profit.

The problem with this movie is that it bases the defense of Christianity on the false modern (Enlightenment) assumption that human reason is the final and highest arbiter of truth, thus setting it above God’s revelation of Himself in the Scriptures. Hence, this movie illustrates how the basic assumption of contemporary apologetics is faulty, because if our faith is upheld and proven by human reason, then unlearned Christian students attempting to use the arguments in this movie are also vulnerable in the future to an atheistic professor who could easily take advantage of their scientific and philosophical ignorance and poke holes through these basic arguments…. Read this in full at

by Dave Bruskas
A man who loves Jesus and leads his family well has at least three roles in common with the man who is called to lead the church.

Those who hold the highest human office of authority in the church-elders-are expected to meet the highest standards.

The biblical qualifications for elders are listed in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. Not surprisingly, some of these standards are measured by who a man is in his home, among his family. A man who loves Jesus and leads his family well has at least three roles in common with the man who is called to lead the church: he is a preacher, a pastor, and a provider…. Read this in full at

by J. Warner Wallace?
As a detective, I’ve learned to accept the variation I see between eyewitness accounts. I’ve interviewed witnesses of crimes (occurring just hours earlier), only to find what appeared to be significant “contradictions” between the accounts. It’s my job, as the investigator, to determine why the eyewitnesses appear to contradict one another, even though there is no doubt the event occurred and the witnesses were telling the truth. There are times when similar variations (or alleged “contradictions”) are observed in the Biblical accounts. It’s our job, as Christian Case Makers, to apply a few simple investigative principles to determine whether or not these differences impact the reliability of the accounts. I want to offer a few investigative principles and filters for investigating these alleged Bible contradictions. These principles are not outrageous or unusual. They’re not specific to the Bible. They’re not Christian tricks or devices used to cover up inadequacies. They are straightforward tools and approaches useful when examining any ancient document or piece of evidence. If we objectively examine the Scriptures with these principles in mind, we’ll not only grow in our understanding of the Bible, but we’ll better comprehend and resolve the difficulties: …. Read this in full at

May the God of endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude toward each other, similar to Christ Jesus’ attitude. That way you can glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ together with one voice.
– Romans 15:5-6 (CEB)

“Death for the Christian is a turning off of the light because the dawn has come.”
– Leon Jaworski

by Kevin DeYoung
Several years ago our church started offering a leadership training course once or twice a year. The class began as a training seminary for those who had been nominated for elders or deacons. Now the course must be completed before a man can be considered for the office of elder or deacon.

At the end of the 12-week class there is a test. The exam contains a couple longer essays, short answers, and a series of questions testing basic Bible knowledge. We are careful to say there is much more to effective ministry than passing a written test. Much more. And yet, we do not want our staff, teachers, and officers to be biblically illiterate. Granted, people aren’t usually too excited about taking a test, but they are almost always glad to have taken the class. And more often than not, the test proves to be an edifying experience.

A. Who did the following?
1. Wrote the book of Acts?
2. Appeared with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration?
3. Directed the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem?
4. Killed a thousand Philistines with a donkey’s jawbone? …. Read this in full at

by Michael Thompson
Jesus taught like a man making men. His classrooms were vineyards, mountains and desert roads. His teaching aids were sheep, fig trees and action stories. His style was authentic, practical and often in-your-face. He was teaching men and really understood His audience.

A recent blog post caught my eye: “Do men want to study the Bible?” The underlying question seemed to be were men disinterested or distracted when it came to learning the Word.

Most men I know are interested in applicable, tactile, useful, visceral truth. We want to study like archaeologists and be challenged like survivalists. We want to wrestle with the Word, grapple with challenging thoughts, debate with other men…in short, we want Bible study to be manly. Hands on – elbow deep in applied truth. I don’t want to generalize men, but I think it is true for most of us whether sportsmen, academics, geeks or techies…. Read this in full at

by Melinda Emerson
We small business owners often find ourselves in circumstances where we are discouraged and exasperated, which can swiftly make us question our faith. When that happens, words from the Bible will offer inspiration when it’s most needed. For five years I’ve been blessed to be able to write an article on Bible verses for small business owners. Many of you shared with me how helpful these posts have been, which motivates me to continue this practice.

My Bible verse theme for the year is, Philippians 3:13-14 – when I read it I always feel encouraged to look forward and not dwell on the past. Running a business can make you feel like you’re a chicken in a race every day. At times it’s easy to become too busy or tired to pray, but never forget that’s where our power comes from. Keep these verses close by to keep you grounded in the face of adversity. I believe God wants us all to live a good life. Here are 14 Bible verses for small business owners in 2014…. Read this in full at

Wall murals portraying Crusader knights and symbols of medieval military orders have been rediscovered in a Jerusalem hospital thanks to a burst water pipe and a storeroom reorganization.

These paintings were the works of a French count, Comte Marie Paul Amédée de Piellat, who believed himself to be a descendant of Crusaders. The count was a frequent visitor to Jerusalem and had the Saint-Louis Hospice built between 1879 and 1896, naming it after St. Louis IX, a king of France and leader of the Seventh Crusade between A.D. 1248 and 1254.

During World War I, however, the hospital came under the control of Turkish forces, who painted over the designs with black paint. The count returned to Jerusalem to restore his murals, but died in the hospital in 1925, his work undone…. Read this in full at

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle.”
– Philo of Alexandria

What of the wisdom from above? First, it is pure, and then peaceful, gentle, obedient, filled with mercy and good actions, fair, and genuine. Those who make peace sow the seeds of justice by their peaceful acts.
– James 3:17-18 (CEB)

Words: Henry A. Becker, 1880
Music: Walter B. Gilbert, 1865

Christ is risen from the dead!
Darkness now no more shall reign;
Thorns no more shall crown the head
That was bowed with grief and pain:
Christ the Lord, the mighty King,
From our sin hath made us free.
Where, O death, is now thy sting?
Where, O grave, thy victory?

Scoffers now no more will say:
If Thou be the Christ, come down
From the cross, and prove today
That to Thee belongs the crown!
For our risen Lord and King
From our sin hath made us free,
Where, O death, is now thy sting?
Where, O grave, thy victory?

Faith now knows He is the Lord,
Gives assent to His decree,
Trusts the promise in His Word,
And is crowned with victory,
Shouting praises to the King,
Who from sin hath made us free.
Where, O death, is now thy sting?
Where, O grave, thy victory?

>from NetHymnal at

“I prayed for faith and thought it would strike me like lightening. But faith did not come. One day I read, “Now faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” I had closed my Bible and prayed for faith. I now began to study my Bible and faith has been growing ever since.”
– Dwight L. Moody


Aired – 5/30/2014 @ 10:00PM central
I do not believe I would be wrong by saying that most Sunday morning church services are gatherings rather than assemblies.
Many may sit every Sunday morning in churches of 100 members, or in cathedrals of 5,000 and not be assembled. They may sing in their choirs, teach Sunday-school classes, preach strong sermons, and still not be assembled, only gathered.
What is the motive of these gatherings? Is it to enrich their lives and grow in the Lord, or simply to eat and get fat?
Please enjoy this archive replay

Use the following list as your daily prayer guide. Think of a brother or situation that applies and lift them up in prayer.

I am agreeing in prayer with you for God’s blessings to overtake you!

Marital harmony
Family unity
Children saved
Faithful pastor
Spirit-filled church
Real friendships
Relatives redeemed
Educational benefits
Recreational time
Fulfilling career
Favor with God and man
Be in God’s will

Better Jobs
Raises or bonuses
Sales & commissions
Business Growth
Estates & inheritances
Investment increase
Rebates & returns
Checks in the mail
Gifts & surprises
Money to be found
Bills decrease while blessings increase

“And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God” (Deut. 28:2).

[As you travel on business or vacation, let me know if you’d like the church guys to pray for your safety and spiritual effectiveness. I’ll add your name to the list for the time you’ll be away.]

Are you looking for something or do you have something to sell? Let me know and I’ll put it in this newsletter.

The Complete Gift Solution

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All links to websites are provided as a service, and do not imply endorsement by this ministry.

(BTW: whenever the URLs in this newsletter are too long to turn into links on your e-mail program, just copy the entire URL (two lines or more) and paste it into a temporary email message. Then delete the return in the middle of it and copy it again. Then paste it into your web browser and hit enter.)

If you take a laptop computer for a run you could jog your memory. 
Frank Coleman, Editor

Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!

CONNECTIONS is a periodic newsletter of announcements, news, recommendations, articles, and other information helpful to men in our spiritual growth. Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!

The CONNECTIONS Team offers a variety of activities for men to interact with other men on our journey of faith in Christ together. Large group, small group, and one-to-one events encourage relationship building and spiritual strengthening that result in maximizing the potential we all have in Christ.
Contact Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, if you’d like to participate in a men’s discipleship program.
Path Of Life Ministries is located at 6459 S. Campbell Ave. Chicago, IL 60629.
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