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CONNECTIONS NEWS – 10/15/2017

Connecting man to man to God
For week of 10/17/2017
Issue 545
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.

Today’s issue is going out to over 2,169 weekly subscribers. Thank you in advance for forwarding this issue to friends, family and associates! To have a friend start their own Free subscription to CONNECTIONS, please have them visit: http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/page33.html

Truly my soul silently waits for God. From Him comes my salvation.
– Psalm 62:1 (NKJV)

CONSIDER
“Will-power does not change men. Time does not change men. Christ does.”
– Henry Drummond

AGING STARTS IN YOUR MIND: AN INTERVIEW WITH NOTKER WOLF
The human body is inexorably aging, but is the soul? How does the soul measure itself by a different standard than the body? If we focus on the state of our soul—which is resolutely vibrant, cheerful, and full of zest for life—we wouldn’t resist aging but, instead, speak of growing fulfillment and joy.

Bible Gateway interviewed Notker Wolf about his book, Aging Starts in Your Mind: You’re Only As Old As You Feel (Paraclete Press, 2017).

Q: You’re 77 years old. Explain what you mean: “the soul doesn’t age; it measures itself by a different standard than the body.”

Notker Wolf: The soul is the ongoing identity in our life and is expressed in our body. The body may age, but the whole personality has to grow; become more mature. Our soul has to be flexible and adapt to the different situations during our lifetime. The qualities of our body may be strength, beauty, but we may also fall sick and our soul has to cope with it. The changes of our body may be a challenge, but our personality can look at them in a different perspective of values such as love or sincerity. You have to live in your body and in the same time to remain in a constant distance or reflection. The unity of both is a mystery…. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/aging-starts-in-your-mind-an-interview-with-notker-wolf/

JESUS DID NOT DIE SO YOU COULD BE COOL
by Owen Strachan
My kids watched VeggieTales the other night, and as Bob the Tomato plopped around the screen, it struck me: I am deeply thankful for so-called “Christian culture.”

Yes, products of this kind can veer (all too easily) into kitsch and easy moralism. Some companies seem to operate by the philosophy that if you slap an evangelical-friendly label on an item, you can gull some folks into buying it regardless of quality, regardless of craftsmanship, regardless of theological thoughtfulness. I don’t support such cynical undertakings. The evangelical world has far too many of them, to be sure.

That stated, I’ve been strengthened, blessed, and helped by intentionally Christian products and efforts…. Read this in full at
https://ftc.co/resource-library/blog-entries/jesus-did-not-die-so-you-could-be-cool

15 WORDS THAT CAN CHANGE A MARRIAGE
I love you.
I am sorry.
Please forgive me.
I need you.
I was wrong.

HOW (AND WHY) TO STOP ASKING GOD TO CHANGE YOUR SPOUSE
by Gary Thomas
While working on my book Cherish: The One Word That Changes Everything for Your Marriage, I interviewed a woman who told me about an amazing marital “exercise” she put into practice. She spent an entire year working on her husband’s Christmas present. What she did was write a journal that recorded something she was thankful for about her husband that particular day. These were very specific, day-by-day accounts of what the husband did and why she was thankful to be married to him: putting up the Christmas lights when it was very cold (December 7th), coming home and playing with the kids after a long business trip even though he was obviously tired (Sept. 22), that kind of thing.

When she gave her husband the journal he immediately sat down and read it in one sitting. Later, when recounting this gift to a friend, he told him, “Reading that journal makes me aspire to be the man she thinks I am.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.garythomas.com/how-and-why-to-stop-asking-god-to-change-your-spouse/

GETTING READY FOR “HOW TO LIVE THE BIBLE”
by Mel Lawrenz
I’m going to begin a brand new weekly series on the Bible Gateway Blog called “How to Live the Bible.” I’m really looking forward to these lessons for many reasons.

No doubt we all are struck by Jesus’ words that: “Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” (Matthew 7:24). I want my life to be built on a solid foundation, not shifting sand, and I’m sure you do too.

I believe more than ever that we need the depths of the truth of the word of God. But it goes deeper than just reading the Bible, and deeper than studying it. We need to live it…. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/getting-ready-for-how-to-live-the-bible/

IS THE CHURCH IGNORING “THE ORACLES OF GOD”?
by Eric Metaxas & Stan Guthrie
The KGB finally got what it wanted—the separation of church and Bible in the West — with disastrous results.

Two majors with the KGB stood over Gavin Ashenden, who was caught smuggling Bibles into the old Soviet Union during the ‘80s. Who were his contacts, and where were the Bibles going? If Ashenden didn’t cooperate, the KGB officers warned, he’d be convicted of smuggling gold bullion into the country — because of his gold wedding ring! Alas, this trumped up charge was no joke. The sentence was 20 years in a Siberian labor camp.

But Ashenden stood firm, and they finally let him go…. Read this in full at
http://www.breakpoint.org/2017/10/breakpoint-where-is-your-bible/

HOW THE BIBLE HAS CHANGED CULTURES
by John Stonestreet
In this second podcast episode of John Stonestreet’s talk at the Bible Through History conference, John looks at how Scripture answers the questions, “What is man?” “What does it mean to be made in the image of God?” and “What does it mean to have dominion over creation?”…. Read this in full at
http://www.breakpoint.org/2017/10/john-stonestreet-how-the-bible-has-changed-cultures-part-2/

EQUIPPING KIDS TO DEFEND THE BIBLE: ANSWERS TO COMMON QUESTIONS
In 2014, Florida father Paul Rubeo got a troubling voicemail from his son’s fifth-grade teacher:

“I noticed that he has a book – a religious book,” the teacher said. “He’s not permitted to read those books in my classroom.”

That book was the Bible. Paul’s son, Giovanni, told his dad that the teacher saw him reading his Bible during a free reading time and ordered the boy to put it on her desk.

Paul contacted the school, and after discussions with lawyers, school administrators eventually relented, apologizing for the teacher’s actions and formally updating school policy to affirm that students can read Bibles during open reading times. But Giovanni isn’t the first young person to experience hostility toward the Bible at school. Nor will he be the last. Even when reading Scripture isn’t outright banned, it is not uncommon for the Bible to be ridiculed by teachers and other students.

As parents, how can we help our children remain confident in the Bible? We need to explain to them the reasons why we know the Bible is accurate, reliable and relevant. And we need to prepare them to respond to the questions and uninformed criticisms they may encounter.

Author and speaker Eric Metaxas has written several books on the impact of the Christian faith and the Bible throughout history. In his book, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About God (But Were Afraid to Ask), he engages in a Q&A with a skeptic. Here, he responds to common objections that students may hear concerning the Bible…. Read this in full at
http://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/spiritual-growth-for-kids/equipping-kids-to-defend-the-bible-answers-to-common-questions

HOW TO FREELY ACCESS THE REFORMATION STUDY BIBLE
One of the best ways to commemorate the anniversary of the Reformation this year is to read the Reformation Study Bible. You can access it free on Bible Gateway. The Reformation Study Bible, which collects thousands of Bible study notes and insights from more than 50 distinguished Bible scholars, epitomizes the reformative movement’s insistence that Scripture should be easily accessible and readily shared.

It’s not every day that you can celebrate the 500th anniversary of anything (no, your grandparents are not that old). So, what better way to get into the spirit of the Reformation than to read the translation which was named after it?

All of the study notes from The Reformation Study Bible are available to read right alongside Scripture at Bible Gateway. The following is a step-by-step guide on how to do that: …. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-freely-access-the-reformation-study-bible/

READING PROVERBS IN THE CONTEXT OF THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENT
by Jeremy Bouma
One of my seminary professors used to cheekily refer to common Christian devotional practices as our “daily bread crumb.” Meaning: we often take a verse or even part of a verse and spin out a comforting crumb of exhortation at the expense of the whole loaf of biblical bread—whether the surrounding pericope or greater.

Perhaps with no other place in Scripture do we do this than with Proverbs. Ryan O’Dowd offers an important reminder in his new commentary on Proverbs (Story of God Bible Commentary) when studying this book: …. Read this in full at
https://zondervanacademic.com/blog/reading-proverbs-in-the-context-of-the-old-and-new-testament/

THE CYNIC’S GUIDE TO SIN
by Derek Rishmawy
Wickedness should not surprise us. A robust view of sin prepares us for the reality that institutions grow corrupt, politicians fudge promises, and even within the church folks gossip, cheat, and lie. Pastors fall. None of this is new.

It’s important to maintain a healthy realism about humanity’s moral potential. As Dorothy Sayers pointed out after World War II in Creed or Chaos?, “The people who are most discouraged are those who cling to an optimistic belief in the civilizing influence of progress and enlightenment.” The brutality of the war, she said, was “the utter negation of everything they believed.” Meanwhile, those who held a doctrine of original sin were better prepared to cope — sinners acting like sinners was no crushing blow…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2017/october/cynics-guide-to-sin.html

PURITY AND HOLINESS
by Peter Leithart
Though sometimes conflated, purity and holiness aren’t the same thing in the Old Testament. There are two overlapping spectra: A spectrum from profane or common on the one side and holiness/sanctity on the other, and a spectrum with unclean/impure to clean/pure on the other.

The difference is evident in the Hebrew. The word tame’ refers to impurity; it is both a verb (become unclean) and a noun (the status of “unclean”). One can become tame’ by touching a carcass of an animal (Leviticus 5:2), eating unclean food (11:8), having skin disease (13:11, 15, etc.), suffering various forms of discharge from the genitals (15:2, 25-26), giving birth (Leviticus 12), or being in the presence of a human corpse (Numbers 19:13)…. Read this in full at
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/leithart/2017/10/purity-and-holiness-2/

DISCIPLES ARE MADE IN THE HOME
by Rebekah Curtis
It’s no secret that the churches are shrinking. We all have our theories. Bad music, Pharisees, infighting, Trump voters, tattooed lady pastors, kids’ soccer on Sundays, scandals in excelsis, millennials, theodicy, Folgers coffee at Bible class: These are the crimes that fry men’s souls. Enjoyable as such discussions are, most of us are probably due to check our facts. A great many such facts are collected in George Hawley’s Demography, Culture, and the Decline Of America’s Christian Denominations.

The news is not good, and Hawley shoots down one armchair theory early: It is not only liberal mainline Protestants who face serious decline. Socially conservative evangelical churches and the Roman Catholic Church are also losing ground, and often fail to put up better numbers than mainline churches in measurements associated with denominational health…. Read this in full at
https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2017/10/disciples-are-made-in-the-home

THE 1599 GENEVA BIBLE: HISTORY’S FIRST STUDY BIBLE
The Geneva Bible is unique among all other Bibles. Translated by the best Protestant scholars of the day, it’s a version born directly out of the religious conflict of the Reformation. And, though sadly little-known today, The Geneva Bible became one of the most popular translations of its time. Why? …. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/the-1599-geneva-bible-historys-first-study-bible/

WYCLIFFE ASSOCIATES LAUNCHING HUNDREDS OF BIBLE TRANSLATIONS IN NEXT FEW MONTHS
In many ways, the Great Commission is a task of intention and urgency. This is especially true when it comes to Bible translation. Bruce Smith, President and CEO of Wycliffe Associates, recently shared some exciting news.

“We have helped to launch 383 new Bible translations over the past 12 months. So that’s an unprecedented pace of new Bible translation starts.

“The interesting thing is what it has actually done is actually increase the demand of support from language groups that are still without Scripture who are looking for help starting their translations. We’re currently facing a backlog of about 600 languages now that are asking for assistance to train them with our MAST methodology and provide technical resources to help them get started.” …. Read this in full at
https://www.mnnonline.org/news/wycliffe-associates-launching-hundreds-translations-next-months/

WHERE ARE YOU ON THE ADULTERY TRAIL?
by Tim Chester
In this extract from the newly released book 2 Samuel for You, author Tim Chester reflects on how physical adultery springs out of two other, less recognized adulteries.

“Then David sent messengers to get her [Bathsheba]. She came to him, and he slept with her.” (2 Samuel 11:4)

Adultery is ugly. But before David thought about the act of adultery with Bathsheba in this famous story, there were two other kinds of adultery he had already committed…. Read this in full at
https://www.thegoodbook.com/blog/interestingthoughts/2017/10/03/what-kind-of-adulterer-are-you/

VERSE TO PONDER
Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love.
– 1 Corinthians 16:13 (NLT)

CONSIDER
Giving is not an economic decision – it’s a spiritual one: the need to give out of our substance rather than our surplus – from our hearts and not our heads.

CENTER FOR CONGREGATIONAL SONG LAUNCHES AS ANTIDOTE TO ’WORSHIP WARS’
Praise team leaders, organists, gospel choir members and other lovers of church music will gather in Dallas this weekend to launch the Center for Congregational Song in an effort to counter the “worship wars.”

The online center is being kicked off at an Oct. 15-16 conference — bookended by a gospel sing in a park and “beer and hymns” at a local brewery — that comes at a time when musicians are trying to re-energize an aspect of church life that often gets mired in feuds about style, volume and the complexity of the songs sung during worship…. Read this in full at
http://religionnews.com/2017/10/12/center-for-congregational-song-launches-as-antidote-to-worship-wars/

CAN WE CREATE REVIVAL?
by David F. Watson
A couple of weeks ago I went to hear Rolland Baker speak at a nearby church. Rolland and his wife, Heidi, are the founders of Iris Global, an organization that has planted over 2,000 churches in Mozambique and expanded its operations to around 20 other nations. These are two amazing people. They and their ministry teams have labored for years through incredible hardship, brought untold numbers of people to Christ, built hospitals, healed the sick, transformed communities and generally accomplished more for the kingdom of God than I could ever imagine doing. Their work in Mozambique stands as one of the most fruitful missionary movements of recent history.

It’s been a long time since I’ve heard Rolland speak, and his comments really gave me pause. He was quite insistent that there is nothing — literally nothing — we can do to bring about revival. Rather, revival is entirely the sovereign work of God. We human beings can only hope to participate in what God is already doing when revival happens, and it most often happens among the poor and oppressed…. Read this in full at
http://www.ministrymatters.com/all/entry/8459/can-we-create-revival

TWO THINGS DANIEL TEACHES ME ABOUT HOW TO THRIVE IN A HOSTILE CULTURE
by Jess Connolly
In the Old Testament, Daniel was just a kid. Scholars estimate that he and his friends were in their early teenage years. Daniel was a healthy, strong kid who didn’t do anything to land himself in hot water, except maybe be born a little wiser and taller than other kids. But he was born into a remarkable cultural battle — a time when God’s people were in the midst of a fight between their worldly identities and their kingdom identities, much like the world many of us found ourselves born into — like we’re seeing our kids born into as well.

Daniel and his pals were up against an interesting dilemma: How did they live under the rule of the king of their country while still honoring the King of their hearts? We could dig into Daniel for chapters upon chapters, but there are just a few things I want us to grab from this short passage…. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/two-things-daniel-teaches-me-about-how-to-thrive-in-a-hostile-culture/

8 QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU UNDERSTAND AND APPLY THE BIBLE
by Matthew Harmon
Sometimes the most important things in the Christian life can be the most difficult.

That can certainly be true of understanding and applying the Bible.

As believers we know that reading Scripture is essential to following Jesus. But if we’re honest, we often find it difficult to understand and apply. The Bible talks about so many different things; how do we know what to focus on? It’s set in a world very different from ours; how do we apply it to our lives today?

One simple and effective tool is asking good questions. The questions we ask when we read the Bible largely determine how we understand and apply the Bible. So we need to make sure we are asking the right questions, the kind of questions the Bible was designed to answer. But how do we know what those questions are? …. Read this in full at
https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/8-questions-to-help-you-understand-apply-the-bible#When:2017-10-11T05:00:00+00:00

NOT EVERY TEENAGER EMBRACES REBELLION: AN INTERVIEW WITH REBECCA GREGOIRE LINDENBACH
Teen rebellion is seen as a cultural norm, but is it really? Or is it more that youthful rebellion is not properly understood, especially within the Christian environment?

Bible Gateway interviewed Rebecca Gregoire Lindenbach about her book, Why I Didn’t Rebel: A Twenty-Two-Year-Old Explains Why She Stayed on the Straight and Narrow–and How Your Kids Can Too (Thomas Nelson, 2017).

Q: Give a few examples of what parents should NOT consider to be rebellion.

Rebecca Gregoire Lindenbach: We tend to see a “good kid” as one who fits a certain personality description. The good kid is the one who’s friendly, always knows the right thing to say, is well-dressed, soft-spoken, and doesn’t rock the boat.

The problem? Most people don’t fit in that personality!

I certainly didn’t.

We need to stop seeing rebellion as anything that goes against that “nice kid” persona. Because there are a lot of things teens do that, although they aren’t rebellion, aren’t “nice.” …. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/not-every-teenager-embraces-rebellion-an-interview-with-rebecca-gregoire-lindenbach/

THE BIBLE: FICTION OR FACT?
Can the Bible be trusted? Is it a book of fiction? Why do Christians follow it? In this week’s episode on Ask Away, Vince and Jo Vitale answer questions on why the Bible is so important to Christians and whether or not we can trust it as the “Word of God.” …. Hear this in full at
http://rzim.org/ask-away-broadcasts/can-we-trust-the-bible/

HOW TO SELECT FROM THE VARIETY OF BIBLES WITH COMFORT PRINT TYPEFACE
Do you feel overwhelmed and confused when attempting to choose a print edition Bible from the hundreds that are available?

The Bible Gateway Store now makes selecting a Bible with Comfort Print® typeface in the New International Version (NIV) Bible translation manageable by filtering your search with five categories: price, cover material, cover color, print size, and gender/age…. Read this in full at
https://www.biblegateway.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-select-from-the-variety-of-bibles-with-comfort-print-typeface/

CHARACTER-FORMING OUTDOOR ADVENTURE GROUP WILL REMAIN ‘A PLACE WHERE BOYS CAN BE BOYS’
The leader of a national outdoor adventure program aiming to help develop men of character has reassured member-families and supporters that it will remain “a place where boys can be boys.”

Trail Life USA CEO Mark Hancock made the pledge in the wake of the announcement by the Boys Scouts of America that it will begin admitting girls next year.

Trail Life USA’s Christian-based leadership and development program will continue to serve boys and young men exclusively, Hancock said…. Read this in full at
http://www.christiannewswire.com/news/1916880242.html

WHILE CHURCH GIVING IN THE US REMAINS LOW, 40 COUNTRIES ARE NOT ON TARGET TO REACH CHILD DEATH REDUCTION GOALS: NEW EMPTY TOMB, INC. REPORT
Church member giving as a percent of income in 2015 remained near the lowest levels in the 1968-2015 period.

Although a slight increase was measured from 2014 to 2015, the portions of income given to churches in 2014 and 2015 were among the lowest over four decades.

Meanwhile, 40 countries were not on target as of 2015 to meet global goals to reduce their under-age-five mortality rates…. Read this in full at
http://religionnews.com/2017/10/09/while-church-giving-in-the-u-s-remains-low-40-countries-are-not-on-target-to-reach-child-death-reduction-goals-new-empty-tomb-inc-report/

CONSIDER
“You can count on this – the past ended one second ago. From this point onward, you can be clean, filled with his Spirit, and used in many different ways for his honor.”
– Charles R. Swindoll

VERSE TO PONDER
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.
– Hebrews 10:23 (ESV)

THIS WEEK’S HYMN: PENTECOSTAL POWER
Words & Music: Charles H. Gabriel, 1912

Lord, as of old, at Pentecost,
Thou didst Thy power display,
With cleansing, purifying flame,
Descend on us today.

Refrain
Lord, send the old-time power, the Pentecostal power!
Thy floodgates of blessing, on us throw open wide!
Lord, send the old-time power, the Pentecostal power!
That sinners be converted and Thy Name glorified!

For mighty works for Thee, prepare
And strengthen every heart;
Come, take possession of Thine own,
And never more depart.
Refrain

All self consume, all sin destroy!
With earnest zeal endue
Each waiting heart to work for Thee;
O Lord, our faith renew!
Refrain

Speak, Lord! before Thy throne we wait,
Thy promise we believe,
And will not let Thee go until
The blessing we receive.
Refrain

>from NetHymnal at
http://nethymnal.org/htm/p/e/pentecop.htm

ON PRAYER
“God commands you to pray but forbids you to worry.”
– John Vianney

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

[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.

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

How to Make GIANT Lego Man Costume from Cardboard
https://youtu.be/jU_fq_VRS0w

Waking up is hard for a beagle puppy!
https://youtu.be/gc72kHWKOjo

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

(BTW: whenever the URLs in this newsletter are too long to turn into links on your email 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.)

Gravity: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law.
Frank Coleman
Editor
rev.frank@gmail.com

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CONNECTIONS is a periodic newsletter of announcements, news, recommendations, articles, and other information helpful 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 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.
Visit our website at: http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/

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