Friday, September 26, 2003

Problem of Inspiration

The sermons on Sunday mornings with the South Yukon Church recently have been answering some questions like the one from this past Sunday: What does the Bible mean by “All Scripture is God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16)? I’ve heard people criticize the Bible concerning its failure to be something that the Bible never claims to be. For instance, if the Bible says about the sun rising in the east, critics want the Bible to be scientifically accurate and argue that it should say something about rotations and orbits. The Bible never asserts itself as an astrological manual. If it did, you would have something to gripe about. The Bible does claim that heaven is its origin; that it is the authority for your life; and that it is sufficient for your walk to eternal life through Christ. If those things were proved untrue, we’ve got a big problem. But they haven’t been, nor will they be. If, then, you don’t respond positively to the message from the Bible, you’ve got a big problem! That’s Life at Work!

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Interest and Proximity

When a storm like Isabel approaches, everybody pays some kind of attention; but the people who pay the closest attention are those who are in the path of the hurricane. When tornadoes are flying around the OKC area, people on the coast may pay attention, but we are glued to our radios and televisions. One of the rules of human nature is: “Interest is directly proportional to proximity.” The closer we are to an event, the more interest or concern we have in it.
When your spouse tells you that if you continue to drink, you will wreck your relationship with him or her; and you do not make the effort to quit drinking, you are revealing a lot about your feelings about your family. When you read in the Bible that something you are doing is contrary to what God wants for you, and you do not change your mind about doing it; you are demonstrating that your relationship to God is not something that is close to you.
Your closeness to your family and your God is seen in the interest you show in the issues that impact them. Examine yourself. Ask yourself the serious questions. Is alcohol more important than your family? Is your sin more important than your relationship with God? See if your heart is where it ought to be. That’s Life at Work!

Richard May

Friday, September 12, 2003

Quarrels With God

Near the end of his life, Henry David Thoreau, author and philosopher, was encouraged to make his peace with God. I don’t know how the encourager instructed Thoreau to do that, but Thoreau responded, “I didn’t know that we had ever quarreled.”
Maybe you’ve never quarreled with God like a husband quarrels with a wife or one sibling quarrels with another, but you’ve been at odds with God, whether you’ve realized it or not. I know that’s true because it’s true of every person - including you and me. Paul explained “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless” (Romans 3:10-12).
Thank God that the quarrel is not the end of the story. While we all deserve death because of our unrighteous, the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus, his Son (Romans 6:23). Many people, for various reasons ranging from inopportunity to foolish pride, have lived and died, not knowing about the quarrel or the Christ. You have been at odds with God. Have you accepted his gift? That’s Life at Work!

Richard May
The article appearing in the South Yukon Bulletin this week:

I’m wearing red, white, and blue as I write this down. It’s 9/11 and 9:23 A.M. Two years ago today I got a call here at the office from JeannaLynn saying that a plane had crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center. I quickly got one of the televisions we have and set it up in the office area. What we saw was unbelievable! How in the world could a pilot make such a huge mistake?
Then it happened again. I get goose bumps on my arms, tears in my eyes, and a lump in my throat when I think about watching the live video of the second plane crashing into the second tower. My first thought was, “Oh, no! This was not a mistake!”
As the drama continued in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania I remember vividly a variety of emotions. I remember tremendous sadness at the incredible loss of life; both of those who had no idea they were in danger, and those who rushed headlong into danger to save others.
I remember an empty hopelessness. It crushes the heart to want to do something - to know you’ve got to do something - but don’t have a clue as to what to do.
I remember a raging anger. Who could do such a thing? How could anyone deliberately drive a commercial aircraft through a heavily populated business center? How evil would someone have to be to do that? What kind of hate compels a man to kill thousands of innocent strangers? The more I came up with no answers to those questions, the angrier I became.
I remember a swelling pride in our own people. The heroes that emerged from common people, people just like you and me, who risked life and gave it, to save others, caused all of us to beam with admiration.
I remember a national unity that help me understand my part in helping. Sending money, giving blood, and standing hand-in-hand in our auditorium with other people from Yukon, praying desperately for God’s intervention, were our contributions to the effort.
I remember a longing for justice - a longing I still have today. My prayer is that God will save through Christ those who assisted in the attack on the innocent two years ago today. I also pray that if they if they don’t repent, God will punish them - severely.
“Vengeance is mine. I will repay,” says the Lord.