CONNECTIONS News – 06/08/2014

Connecting man to man to God
For week of June 8, 2014
Issue 514

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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A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.
– Proverbs 25:28

CONSIDER
What would happen if we treated our Bible like we treat our cell phones: flipping through it several times a day anticipating important messages?

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE BIBLE GATEWAY BETA WEBSITE
What do you think of the Bible Gateway beta website so far? The beta has been available for several weeks now, and we’ve been hard at work making fixes and improvements based on visitor feedback.

As the beta period has gone on (and as the date of the new website’s official launch draws closer), we’ve collected some of the most frequently-asked questions we’ve received about the new website. We’ve answered these and more questions about the beta at our support portal, but here are four of the most common questions…. Read this in full at
http://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2014/06/frequently-asked-questions-about-the-bible-gateway-beta-website/

FINDING FIRM FOOTING IN BIBLICAL LITERACY
by Robert White
A look at recent headlines once again leaves Christians thinking the rest of the world is against them:

*Liberal Party of Canada leader Justin Trudeau announces that candidate nominees must support the party’s pro-choice stance – grandfathering in current pro-life MPs such as John McKay. Pundits begin musing what this now means for potential candidates who have a pro-life stance, particularly evangelical Christians or Roman Catholics.

*Law societies across Canada turn down Trinity Western University’s (TWU) request to accredit grads from a proposed law school because of its biblically based community standards agreement which prohibits sexual activity between anyone other than a married man and woman.

*Kathleen Taylor, an Oxford University researcher suggested, during a presentation on brain research in Wales, that one day religious fundamentalism may be treated as a curable mental illness…. Read this in full at
http://www.guelphmercury.com/living-story/4546733-finding-firm-footing-in-biblical-literacy/

WHICH TRANSLATION OF THE BIBLE SHOULD I USE?
by Dave Dunham
There are more translations of the Bible than most of us will ever read, and the list is growing. I can appreciate, then, the nature of this question. After all, if there are so many translations to choose from, how do I decide which one I am going to consistently use? I am not a linguistic expert, but I will do my best to be helpful in answering this question.

Determining the best translation depends on answering the question, “What’s my goal?”

First, we should consider what we want in a translation. The variations in philosophy of translation and form of presentation allow us to see a wide and diverse value to the versions available. Some might be better used for intensive study than others, while another might be best for group reading, and still another for teaching children. Unless you are an advocate of the King James Only (which is a whole other can of worms to discuss), there’s no reason to limit yourself to only one translation. We ought to pause, then, to consider the nature of translation…. Read this in full at
http://www.faithvillage.com/article/73eaa581a6a1491bb7974d92e5395768/which_translation_of_the_bible_should_i_use

THINKING OF ADOPTING?
by Clare De Graaf
As I am writing this blog, my wife Susan is in China. She’s there with our son-in-law and daughter and all four of their children to finalize the adoption of Maggie, a special needs two year old. They met our newest granddaughter a few days ago and she already owns their hearts!

The adoption journey in our family began about 30 years ago. One day my wife Susan told me she’d been praying about adopting a child. My knee-jerk reaction was, “I don’t want to adopt!”

We already had three biological children and that was perfect for me. Besides, I was going through chemotherapy at the time for cancer, with a very uncertain future. Adoption made no sense to me. But, there was another reason I resisted. I wasn’t sure I could love “someone else’s child.” I could imagine being kind to someone else’s child, providing them a home, or even giving money to an orphanage, but adopt? What if we never connected? I wasn’t ready…. Read this in full at
http://www.claredegraaf.com/2014/05/26/thinking-of-adopting/

WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR BIBLE?
by Evan D. Burns
For those of us who are prone to buy good books, aspire to read them though they go on the shelf, and then rarely read them let alone read the Bible itself, J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) issues a clarion call to wake up from lethargic Bible intake:

Next to praying, there is nothing so important in practical religion as Bible-reading. God has mercifully given us a book which is “able to make us wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 3: 15.). By reading that book, we may learn what to believe, what to be, what to do; how to live with comfort, and how to die in peace. Happy is that man who possesses a Bible! Happier still is he who reads it! Happiest of all is he who not only reads it- but obeys it, and makes it the rule of his faith and practice!…. Read this in full at
http://www.andrewfullercenter.org/blog/2014/06/what-are-you-doing-with-your-bible/

4 MODERN VERSIONS OF THE BIBLE THAT ARE RUINING THE BIBLE
by Ben Irwin
I was standing in the ruins of one of the world’s oldest synagogues when I realized I didn’t want to be a Bible publisher anymore.

The epiphany came at a rather inconvenient moment, since the whole reason I was there was to convince our guide, a respected Bible teacher, that he should do a study Bible. Or, as they like to say in the publishing business, I was trying to “acquire” him.

I’d been working for an evangelical publisher for almost five years. I loved my job. I loved publishing Bibles – and I published a lot of them. Study Bibles. Youth Bibles. Audio Bibles. We had a Bible for everyone…or at least we aspired to.

We wanted more people to read the Bible. And for a time, I thought publishing more Bibles was the best way to make that happen.

But standing in that synagogue – hearing about the role scripture played in the lives of those who had gathered there – I started to question that assumption…. Read this in full at
http://www.faithstreet.com/onfaith/2014/06/02/four-modern-versions-of-the-bible-that-are-ruining-the-bible/32219

THE SECRET OF FATHERHOOD
by Jim Daly
We all have insecurities boiling inside us. Our culture tells us incessantly what failures we are as fathers.

Even our own genes can throw up roadblocks. We don’t get to be the heroes we feel like we should be. And so we fail. We lose interest. We’d rather play video games.

But we can’t. We have to push aside those fears and insecurities and our own laziness – the “ways of childhood” the apostle Paul talks about (1 Corinthians 13:11). We have to transcend our own weaknesses and predilections and become the greater man. I think God calls us to do just that.

For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want writes Paul in Galatians 5:17.

Sometimes we might wonder why our flesh and our Spirit always seem to be in such opposition. After all, God created both our bodies and souls. But I think the Lord sets up paradoxes in life in order to create environments for us to learn how to become more like Him, situations that push against our natural inclinations and into a more God-honoring stance. It pushes us out of our comfort zone and forces us to lean on Him more and more…. Read this in full at
http://www.faithgateway.com/secret-fatherhood/

IF I HAD LUNCH WITH C. S. LEWIS: AN INTERVIEW WITH ALISTER MCGRATH
Oxford and Cambridge professor Clive Staples Lewis (@CSLewis) died in 1963, yet he remains today a celebrated novelist and world renown Christian apologist.

Bible Gateway interviewed Oxford professor Dr. Alister McGrath (@alisteremcgrath) about his book, If I Had Lunch with C. S. Lewis: Exploring the Ideas of C.S. Lewis on the Meaning of Life (Tyndale House, 2014)…. Read this in full at
http://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2014/06/if-i-had-lunch-with-c-s-lewis-an-interview-with-alister-mcgrath/

C. S. LEWIS SPEAKS LIVE DURING WWII
by Haven of Rest Ministry
The 70th anniversary of D-Day was June 6. We remember the horrors that took place during WWII. It was a time when the fate of the world hung in the balance. But even in the midst of a horrific war, God was calling people to himself and bringing the hope of Christ to those who thought believing in Jesus was old-fashioned and irrelevant.

One story in particular comes to mind. Early in the war, as Nazi bombs rained down on London, the British people were beginning to despair. Victory seemed nearly impossible against a foe so powerful. They had nowhere to turn.

Surprisingly, the religious radio department of the BBC turned to an unknown scholar. He was not yet famous and had not yet written The Chronicles of Narnia, but C.S Lewis knew how to speak about faith in Jesus Christ on a level everyone could understand.

Undaunted by those who deemed him “unqualified,” Lewis rose to the task speaking plainly and persuasively to his beleaguered nation. And he encouraged millions to turn to Jesus in the hour of their greatest need. He explained what it really meant to be a Christian and walk with Jesus. Hear C. S. Lewis on the BBC…. Read this in full at
http://haven.streamon.fm/cs-lewis-on-the-radio-during-wwii-pl-15

HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE DISCIPLES: FAITH
by Matthew Richard
Lots of claims are made about faith. Televangelists claim faith can make your rich. Faith healers claim faith can make you whole. Of course, most good Baptists do not buy into these claims without practicing some discernment. Still, I’ve heard churches claim faith helped them build a new building, increase their attendance and win souls for Christ. While I have no doubt faith can lead into these types of things, we are wrong to assume they directly result from faith. The unspoken equation we often buy into is the amount of faith we have is proportionately equal to the success we experience.

In his book Small Faith, Great God, N.T. Wright debunks that equation with these words: “Faith is not the mysterious ability to sail through life with a secret key that unlocks all the doors. Faith is the willingness to think and act on the basis of what we know of God (which may be very little) and to trust him that he will not let us down.” We often speak of “having enough faith” to take on a certain challenge, to donate a portion of our income or to persevere through trials. If we are not careful, we give the impression that faith grants us a certain measure of control over this life. Again, Wright asserts: “People who live by faith may not know where they are going. They do nonetheless have certainty-certainty in the God who called them and leads them.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.baptiststandard.com/resources/bible-study/16520-baptistway-habits-of-highly-effective-disciples-faith

DRIVE-THRU AT CHURCH: THE EASY-PRAY LANE
In an age when convenience is king and religion is often ridiculed, some churches looking to widen their outreach efforts are embracing what community banks and pharmacies have utilized for decades: the drive-through.

The latest to offer a bit of spiritual uplift in the comfort of your car is Hope United Methodist Church in Voorhees, NJ.

“People go to Dunkin’ Donuts for coffee, not because it’s the best coffee, but because it’s the most convenient,” reasoned Hope’s lead pastor, Jeff Bills. “In a similar way, this is a port of entry for somebody to begin to connect with God in an intentional kind of way.” …. Read this in full at
http://articles.philly.com/2014-05-28/entertainment/50152597_1_drive-through-dunkin-donuts-prayer

SOUTHERN BAPTIST MEMBERSHIP DECLINES FOR 7TH YEAR
The nation’s largest Protestant denomination saw membership decline for the seventh straight year in 2013, according to a recently released annual report.

The report by the Southern Baptist Convention’s publishing arm, Lifeway Christian Resources, puts total membership in the Nashville-based SBC at 15.7 million. That’s down from 15.9 million in 2012, a decrease of a little less than 1%.

Weekly church attendance decreased more than 2% last year, falling to 5.8 million as a weekly average for the year…. Read this in full at
http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/05/28/5854811/southern-baptist-membership-declines.html?rh=1

WHICH COUNTRIES STILL OUTLAW APOSTASY AND BLASPHEMY?
Apostasy and blasphemy may seem to many like artifacts of history. But in dozens of countries around the world, laws against apostasy and blasphemy remain even today.

Earlier this month, the US embassy in Khartoum said it was “deeply disturbed” that Sudan had sentenced a pregnant woman to death for apostasy, the act of abandoning one’s faith – including by converting to another religion. (The woman later gave birth in jail.) And in Pakistan, the country’s most popular TV station was the latest target in a rash of recent government accusations of blasphemy, defined as speech or actions considered to be contemptuous of God or the divine…. Read this in full at
http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/05/28/which-countries-still-outlaw-apostasy-and-blasphemy/

THE DECLINE OF CHRISTIANITY IN THE MIDDLE EAST IN ONE CHART
It’s an odd thing to think of a faith dying out (or being pushed out), but that’s part of the history of Christianity. For example, Turkey (now an overwhelmingly Muslim country) is actually the place that all seven ecumenical councils met. The difference is that we are seeing the de-populations of Christians in real time…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2014/may/morning-roundup-52914.html

VERSE TO PONDER
Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out.
– Proverbs 10:9

CONSIDER
“He who has the Holy Spirit in his heart & the Scripture in his hands has all he needs.”
– Alexander MacLaren

6 TRUTHS ABOUT PORNOGRAPHY
by Matt Barber
The Bible is the “word of truth.” It’s mankind’s user manual. It’s the blueprint, even in suffering, for a joyful and fulfilled existence in this life, and an incomprehensibly glorious eternity in the next. The total truths and precepts inherent within the Judeo-Christian scriptures are both timeless and universally applicable to all people and peoples across the globe, be they Christian, Jew or pagan.

Obviously, neither pornography nor pornography use, in the modern sense, was around during ancient biblical times. Still, since all time is biblical time, and since the Bible transcends time and space, God, in His boundless love and wisdom, has given us specific truths that directly apply to the use and abuse of modern pornography in all its ugly forms.

Studies indicate that at least 70% of American men and 30% of American women regularly view online pornography. The numbers aren’t much better among Christians with a 2011 ChristiaNet survey finding that 50% of Christian men and 20% of Christian women regularly use porn.

The following is in no way a comprehensive analysis of the devastating medical, mental, spiritual and societal pitfalls associated with porn use. Neither is it a complete examination of what the Holy Scriptures have to say on the subject. Still, here are 6 specific truths, from the word of truth, about pornography use: …. Read this in full at
http://barbwire.com/2014/06/02/6-truths-pornography/#I0di8XAciKoPh8BB.99

SEEKING GOD? THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT
by Mark A. Kellner
Carrying leather-bound copies of scripture to church is so 20th century, a recent study indicates, and experts predict a continuing shift from print to palmtop device, such as a smartphone or tablet.

Where generations past would reach for a Bible, hymnal or prayer book in a religious service, it’s just as likely that today’s worshippers will click an onscreen “icon” to find spiritual sustenance, including perhaps pictures of original icons.

Now, members of various faith traditions are turning to handheld devices to read scriptures, look up prayer times, and even locate favorite hymns and make donations on-the-go…. Read this in full at
http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865604147/Seeking-God-Theres-an-app-for-that.html?pg=all

Also see, “Study Finds Religious Apps Helps User Practice Mobile Faith”
http://pressreleases.religionnews.com/2014/05/07/study-finds-religious-apps-helps-user-practice-mobile-faith/

STUDYING THE BIBLE AS A FAMILY
by Larry Fowler
My first church service in Kazakhstan was an eye-opening experience. For one, the gathering lasted three hours and included three sermons! As a guest preacher, I sat on the stage facing the audience. I could see up into the balcony, where all the children sat. A few adults sat scattered among them. I wondered why the children weren’t learning in a more age-appropriate setting.

Later, I asked my hosts, “Don’t you have a Sunday school for the children?” Their blank look revealed that they didn’t understand my concern. “Their parents teach them” was their simple explanation.

At the time, I thought that answer was . . . well, weird. Didn’t the church want to teach kids the Bible? But maybe their approach wasn’t really so strange. After all, the Bible states that it is the responsibility of parents to impress God’s Word on children.

Now, I’m a firm believer in children’s ministry, and today that church in Kazakhstan has developed a thriving kids’ program. But I also think that, in today’s fast-paced culture, it’s too easy for loving, well-meaning parents to rely entirely on the church for the teaching of the Scripture. God says it’s the job of parents to lead their children in studying God’s Word…. Read this in full at
http://www.thrivingfamily.com/Family/Faith/2013/studying-the-bible-as-a-family.aspx

ATHEISTS LOSE LATEST LEGAL FIGHT OVER ‘IN GOD WE TRUST’
Atheists lost their case against the “In God We Trust” motto on America’s currency May 28.

It’s a battle they have lost several times before, as court after court has affirmed that printing and engraving the country’s motto on its money does not violate the US Constitution.

The plaintiffs, a group that included humanists and minor children, argued before a federal appeals court that the words amount to a government endorsement of religion, disallowed by the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. They further held that, forced to carry around a religious statement in their pockets and pocketbooks, their constitutionally guaranteed right to freely exercise religion is being violated…. Read this in full at
http://www.religionnews.com/2014/05/28/atheists-lose-latest-legal-fight-god-trust/

READING THE BIBLE
by Joseph Tkach
The Bible is a literary whole, and we gain the most when we read it as such. This means drinking deeply of the text to receive God’s message for us. Because the Bible’s communication patterns tend to be subtle, complex and nuanced, it takes time, skill and effort to do this. And the more experience you gain in doing so, the more you see the Bible for what it truly is: an unfolding narrative with plot and resolution. It is not a book of isolated bits and pieces for us to draw from in a proof-texting way.

My good friend John Halford likens the Bible to a symphony by Beethoven. John came to understand Beethoven well only when he listened to all nine of his symphonies — not just favorite parts of a few. John says that he has had the same experience with the Bible. Just as Beethoven’s symphonies fit together as a unified whole, so it is with Holy Scripture…. Read this in full at
http://update.gci.org/2014/05/reading-the-bible/

20 REASONS FOR THE UNIQUENESS OF THE BIBLE
by John Ankerberg
1.The Bible is the only book in the world that offers objective evidence to be the Word of God. Only the Bible gives real proof of its divine inspiration.
2.The Bible is the only religious Scripture in the world that is inerrant.
3.The Bible is the only ancient book with documented scientific and medical prevision. No other ancient book is ever carefully analyzed along scientific lines, but many modern books have been written on the theme of the Bible and modern science.
4.The Bible is the only religious writing that offers eternal salvation as a free gift entirely by God’s grace and mercy.
5.The Bible is the only major ancient religious writing whose complete textual preservation is established as virtually autographic…. Read this in full at
http://es.jashow.org/wiki/index.php/20_Reasons_for_the_Uniqueness_of_the_Bible

10 REASONS WE ARE CALLED TO REJOICE
by Darin C. Smith
In a quick biblical overview, I found at least 10 reasons as to why we are called to rejoice. I hope this list is encouraging to you as it was to me!
1.We are called to rejoice in our Lord’s deliverance.
* 1 Samuel 2:1 And Hannah prayed and said, ‘My heart exults in the LORD; my horn is exalted in the LORD. My mouth derides my enemies, because I rejoice in your salvation.

* Psalm 35:9 Then my soul will rejoice in the LORD, exulting in his salvation.

2.We are called to rejoice in the goodness of God.
* Ecclesiastes 7:21 In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man may not find out anything that will be after him.

* 2 Chronicles 6:41 And now arise, O LORD God, and go to your resting place, you and the ark of your might. Let your priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let your saints rejoice in your goodness…. Read this in full at
http://dailymessagedevotional.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/10-reasons-we-are-called-to-rejoice/

MOST MODERN KINGJAMES #BIBLE TRANSLATION IN 30 YEARS COMING TO MARKET
Charisma House hosted the official launch of the Modern English Version (MEV) Bible translation into the trade market in a highly anticipated one-day event at Charisma Media in Lake Mary, Florida, May 23.

The MEV is the most modern translation produced in the King James tradition in 30 years. This word-for-word translation maintains the beauty of the past yet provides fresh clarity for a new generation of Bible readers. The MEV also accurately communicates God’s Word anew as it capitalizes references to God, maintaining reverence of the Scripture…. Read this in full at
http://www.charismanews.com/us/43991-most-modern-king-james-translation-in-30-years-coming-to-market

LETTING SCRIPTURE INTERRUPT YOU
Marilyn Chandler McEntyre’s many books show a concern for fostering careful habits of reading and writing among Christians. In her new title, What’s in a Phrase? Pausing Where Scripture Gives You Pause (Eerdmans), McEntyre, professor of English at Westmont College, offers brief meditations on biblical phrases that, for one reason or another, have stopped her short and occasioned further reflection. Christianity Today spoke with McEntyre about the value of dwelling on passages of Scripture that grab our attention.

How should we react when a Scripture passage gives us pause?

For me, it is rooted in lectio divina, the practice that Benedict taught his monks in the fifth century. It’s slow reading of very short passages of Scripture, listening for the word or phrase that addresses you. You’re listening for something that invites the Spirit to open doors of association, memory, and feeling.

Say you encounter a phrase like “is my shepherd.” On the second reading you might ask, “What is this about? Where I am being summoned? Why did this touch me in some way?” Then you could give those thoughts some silence. On the third reading, you can open up further and ask what the invitation might be, and how this might be giving you specific direction…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2014/may/letting-scripture-interrupt-you-marilyn-mcentyre.html

MASTERING OBJECTIVITY? OR SUBJECT TO THE BIBLE
by Geoff Holsclaw
Tim Challies ended a recent post criticizing the practice of Lectio Divina by saying, “This, then, is a danger in Lectio Divina, that it may teach us to approach the text subjectively rather than objectively.”

But what is the big deal about reading the text subjectively as opposed to objectively?

It is a typical concern of those defending expository or expositional preaching that they are seeking “objectivity” in their study as opposed to others who are succumbing mere “subjectivity”, but beyond the concern that such a simple opposition is wildly naïve philosophically and practically, this dichotomy often does the reverse of what it hopes to do (secure the authority of scripture from human manipulation).

To understand this we need to remember the three ‘subjects’ of Scripture…. Read this in full at
http://geoffreyholsclaw.net/mastering-objectivity-or-subject-to-the-bible/

STUDIES ON LEFT-HANDEDNESS IN THE OLD TESTAMENT
by Dr. Claude Mariottini
According to a recent study, about 10% of the population of the US are left-handed. In addition, about 1% of the population is mixed-handed, that is they are ambidextrous. Ambidextrous people are able to use both hands to do things such as writing or drawing.

In the Old Testament the warriors from the tribe of Benjamin favored their left hand in training for combat. There are several references in the Hebrew Bible to people who were left-handed or could use both hands.

The Bible says that Ehud, a judge in Israel was left-handed (Judges 3:15). In the army of the tribe of Benjamin, the best seven hundred soldiers were all left-handed (Judges 20:16). In David’s army, some of his soldiers were Benjaminites. These mighty men of war were ambidextrous. They served as archers who could shoot arrows and sling stones with either the right hand or the left (1 Chronicles 12:2) …. Read this in full at
http://claudemariottini.com/2014/05/25/studies-on-left-handedness-in-the-hebrew-bible/

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE TEACH ABOUT THE NATURE OF THE SOUL?
by J. Warner Wallace
The biblical authors used two words currently translated as “soul”: “nephesh” (neh’-fesh) in the Old Testament and “psuche” (psoo-khay’) in the New Testament. These Hebrew and Greek words are used to describe many characteristics of animals and humans other than their soulish nature, so for the most part, they typically don’t tell us much about the nature of the soul. There are, however, two places in the New Testament where the word “psuche” does seem to be describing our dual nature as soulish creatures: …. Read this in full at
http://coldcasechristianity.com/2014/what-does-the-bible-teach-about-the-nature-of-the-soul/

WE DO NOT READ THE BIBLE SO THAT WE CAN MASTER IT. WE READ IT SO THAT IT COMES TO MASTER US.
by Andrew C. Thompson
How can Holy Scripture be a means of grace in our lives?

That is a question I’ve been thinking a lot about the past few months as I’ve led a Bible study at my church. We read the Gospel of Luke, meeting weekly on Sunday evenings for about 3 months to discuss the biblical text together. Reading the Scripture in community can be an amazing experience — the insights and experiences of a group can convey a power to what John Wesley called ‘searching the Scriptures’ that is hard to match when reading alone.

One of the points Wesley makes about the use of Scripture as a means of grace that has always struck me is his focus on the active process of receiving the word of God. For instance, Wesley never says that the Bible is a means of grace. His phrase ‘searching the Scriptures’ is meant to emphasize the need to actively engage the biblical text in the rhythms of reading, hearing, and meditating upon it…. Read this in full at
http://www.andrewthompson.com/2014/05/26/prayer-before-reading-the-bible/

WHY I HATE BIBLE CHARACTERS
by Matt Norman
I grew up in church. As I look back there are certain things that have been common practice for decades, maybe even longer. Some of these things are great, but some I think have done some degree of damage. I know this may sound a little extreme, but stick with me. One of these things is our continuous references to the people of the Bible as “characters.” Here is what I mean:

Is Abraham Lincoln a character? When we teach the Bible we tend to refer to the people of the Bible as “characters”. But, do we do this when we teach history? Do we refer to Abraham Lincoln or George Washington as “characters”? No! We talk about them as if they were real people that actually existed. Why? Because they are real people who actually existed. The people of the Bible were also real people who actually existed. For this reason when we teach the Bible, we need to talk about these people as if they were real, because they were…. Read this in full at
http://kidzmatter.com/why-i-hate-bible-characters/

MEDITATING ON GOD’S WORD, A VERSE AT A TIME: ONE WOMAN’S HAND-COPIED BIBLE
by Randy Alcorn
I wanted to share a recent message that came to me. A woman wrote:

“Randy, here are pictures of my hand-copied Bible. This 9 plus year journey started when I read Safely Home. The main Chinese character’s mother hand copied the Bible. This struck me because I would always study and learn by recopying notes. Thus began my totally nonwestern world spiritual journey of recopying the Bible by hand, red letter edition no less. A mutual friend said I should send you pictures of it. The second part of the journey is where God takes this….it’s all up to Him.”

What a way to meditate on God’s word! I got the idea of including the passage in Safely Home about believers hand-copying Bibles from my research about persecuted Christians who do this very thing in parts of the world where printed Bibles aren’t accessible…. Read this in full at
http://www.epm.org/blog/2014/May/26/handcopied-bible

AN ISRAELI-BASED PROJECT WANTS TO PUT A SEFER TORAH ON THE LUNAR SURFACE
A Bible left behind on the lunar rover by Apollo 15 Commander David Scott may one day be joined by a Sefer Torah, a hand-written scroll sacred to Judaism. New Scientist reports this is the first of three culturally important artifacts that the Israeli-based team behind “Torah on the Moon” is hoping to send to the lunar surface. A copy of the Vedas scriptures and the I Ching might be next. “These three texts are among Earth’s most ancient documents, created over 3,000 years ago. They are significant to billions of people,” said group founder Paul Aouizerate, who is looking to raise €12 million to €15 million in funding for the project…. Read this in full at
http://www.theverge.com/2014/5/27/5753596/Torah-on-the-moon

THE AP’S STYLE GUIDE FOR RELIGION, METAPHYSICS, AND GOD’S EXISTENCE
by Emma Green
The Associated Press has added 200 new religion terms to its 2014 style guide. It’s decided to capitalize “God.”. They also note that it’s proper to use lowercase “in references to false gods: He made money his god.”

The Associated Press has declared that there are false gods. I can’t wait to see what happens when they have to cover a story about a strangely gold-tinted calf who shows up in the desert in Egypt.

Other notables: “hell” is not capitalized, but “Hades” is-presumably, the reason being that the latter is a place, but the former is not.

“Holy Spirit” and “Holy Ghost” are both capitalized, but the former is the preferred usage, spirits being the more acceptable metaphysical entity. “Satan” is capitalized, but not “the devil.” Also noteworthy: “Voodoo,” the religion, is capitalized, but “voodoo,” roughly meaning “shenanigans,” is not, “especially when ascribing magical solutions to problems, as in voodoo economics.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/05/style-guide-for-religion/371813/

CONSIDER
Life is a puzzle. Look to the Bible for your missing peace.

VERSE TO PONDER
Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love.
– Psalm 33:18

THIS WEEK’S HYMN: Christ is gone up; yet ere he passed
Words: John Mason Neale, 1843
Music: St. David, Jackson (Byzantium), Mirfield

Christ is gone up; yet ere he passed
from earth, in heaven to reign,
he formed one holy Church to last
till he should come again.

His twelve apostles first he made
his ministers of grace;
and they their hands on others laid,
to fill in turn their place.

So age by age, and year by year,
his grace was handed on;
and still the holy Church is here,
although her Lord is gone.

Let those find pardon, Lord, from thee,
whose love for her is cold;
bring wanderers in, and let there be
one Shepherd and one fold.
http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/c/c061.html

ON PRAYER
If your arms can’t reach someone, hug them with your prayers.

PRAY FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS TODAY
http://christiansincrisis.net/

FRIDAY NIGHT RECAP
ARE YOU GATHERING OR ASSEMBLING?
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
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thepath/2014/05/31/are-you-gathering-or-assembling

DAILY BLESSING PACT
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!

PERSONAL
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

FINANCIAL
Better Jobs
Raises or bonuses
Benefits
Sales & commissions
Business Growth
Settlements
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.]

CLASSIFIEDS
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
http://www.FranksWorldOfGifts.com

Books, Music & More!
http://www.ChristianConnectionBooks.com

Get your domain here!
http://www.GoGlobalDomains.com

SHARE YOUR FAVORITE WEBSITES
Tell us what sites you find enjoyable and why.

Video: Paul Harvey – If I Were the Devil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4rysHrMClDE#t=46

Video: Navy Seal’s Commencement Speech Full of Common-Sense Wisdom
http://jimdaly.focusonthefamily.com/navy-seals-commencement-speech-full-of-common-sense-wisdom/

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.)

A bicycle can’t stand alone; it is two-tired. 
Frank Coleman, Editor
frank@frankcoleman.com

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, frank@frankcoleman.com 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.
Visit our website at: http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/

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Get Archives of all past issues here:
http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/connections/archives_all.html

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