Thursday Book Review – Truth Chronicles The Theif

Hello beloved brethren, I hope this post finds you all doing well! Kayliegh and I finally finished the fourth book in the six book series The Truth Chronicles. It’s been a busy couple weeks, but any free time we had we spent reading. It was well worth the read! If you missed the other book reviews you can find them here, here, and here.

Book four finds three of the four youths born again believers, with one still one the fence. The science fair is coming up again, and the group has paired off to invent some truly amazing projects! Once again you get that feeling that science is way cooler than text books can do justice. Since reading this book Kayliegh has done more science experiments then I can keep up with! She wants to build, experiment, and learn all about science, owing mostly to the practical application shown in these books. It helps that the main characters are young, which gives the reader a sense that they too can be a great inventor.

My favorite part of book four was the integrity shown by the two main characters who seemed to have feelings for one another in past books. As they’re both Christians now, the young man describes how they came up with a plan to avoid temptation. This is exactly the type of message youth groups need to hear! As always, there’s also a clear Gospel presentation in this book. The conflict moves past the evolution vs creation debate in this book, to become more about the meat of Biblical truth. The message is deepening with the arguments, and you see the evangelical outreach spread past the four main characters to other kids they know.

All in all I can’t recommend this book enough, particularly for youth groups and young people. If you have teenagers read it with them, as it gives a particularly accurate depiction of what our young people face when sharing their faith. You can find the kindle version here, or the entire book series here. As always, dear friends, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Series on Plants Part II – Gibberellins

Last week we started a new series working through the steps a seed takes to become a plant, inspired by the tremendous importance of 1 Corinthians 15. All throughout Scripture seeds are referenced, and Christ Himself uses the example for how He must die and rise again to draw all men to Himself. Those verses got me wondering how a tiny seed turns into a huge plant. Last Monday we discussed imbibition, which is the process where the seed ‘drinks’ in water. This week we’re moving on to the very next step of sprouting a shoot out of that tiny water filled seed.

Have you ever wondered at the majesty of Gods creation? I love the verse that shows the disciples fear and awe after Christ calms to storm and silences the wind. Even the wind and sea obey Him. It’s a tragedy that public schools have taken absolutely fascinating subjects and turned them into facts to remember for tests. We’re talking about brainless, heartless, seeds growing into trees taller than sky scrapers based on encoded details far tinier than a grain of sand, deep inside a cell. If that doesn’t knock your socks off, read it again! So, what information comes from the DNA to move the seed from imbibition to germination? A hormone called Gibberellins, which turns starch in the seed into sugar creating fuel to begin the growth process.

This clip below explains how the hormones are created. Although it references Auxins, a hormone we’ll discuss next week, Gibberellins act in a similar way within the plant cell.

The plant cell, once it has enough water, begins the creation of this hormone, Gibberellin, which dominos into the next step. There’s so much more happening within a plant to make it grow, and it just gets more interesting from here. Next week we’ll discuss how gravity and sunlight respond to new hormones causing growth within our tiny seed. Keep in mind, dear ones, that each of these steps is intricate, and entirely necessary for the next step in the growth process. These plants are clearly intelligently designed, irreducibly complex, and beautiful! God the Creator has shown His handiwork everywhere we look, from the tiny plant cell to the massive redwoods. He is worthy of all praise, honor, and glory! So be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Hymns of the Past – Saving Grace

Can you imagine, dear ones, a subject more worthy of singing about than Gods saving grace? That He would save a wretch like me remains the greatest mystery in my mind! What love is this, that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us? Amazing, truly amazing grace! Beloved, I pray this hymn blesses you as its blessed me. As always, friends, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

All glorious God, what hymns of praise

Shall our transported voices raise!

What ardent love and zeal are due,

While heaven stands open to our view!

Once we were fallen, and O how low!

Just on the brink of endless woe:

When Jesus, from the realms above,

Borne on the wings of boundless love,

Scattered the shades of death and night,

And spread around His heavenly light:

By Him what wondrous grace is shown

To souls impoverish’d and undone!

He shows, beyond these mortal shores,

A bright inheritance as ours;

Where saints in light our coming wait

To share their holy, happy state.

Philip Doddridge

Series on Logic Part 11 – Equivocation

Let’s keep rolling with this insanely long series through logic and logical fallacies brethren. Today I want to discuss the Equivocation fallacy with you, and this one will be important on multiple fronts. If ever there was a fallacy the believer needs to understand, it’s this one. So what is an Equivocation fallacy? This fallacy happens when someone uses the same word to mean two or more different things. A fantastic example of this is evolution, which actually can mean micro evolution or macro evolution. Micro being the small changes we see in creation due to genetic mutations and adaptations, which is observable in nature. Macro is the change from species to a new and distinct species, goo to you, which is not observable in nature. So a fallacy would be “We know we evolved from apes because we see birds evolving differently shaped beaks”. That’s equivocation, as the meaning of evolving changed the second time it was used.

Surprisingly, this is actually not the most dangerous way we see this fallacy used. Equivocation is often used by those wishing to twist scripture to fit their false doctrines. You can see this when you ask a Roman Catholic, or a Mormon, if they’re saved by grace. They will agree, however they will equivocate on the meaning of being saved by grace. It’s all of grace, plus as much works as they can fit in. This is how so many are deceived, as these falsehoods masquerade as Biblical, all the while twisting the true meaning of scripture.

We need to be careful as well, dear ones, that we are not guilty ourselves of equivocation. When we speak we need to do so with clarity, as we will be held accountable to every word we speak. When you come across this type of fallacy I would suggest lovingly correcting, particularly if it’s in regards to Biblical truth. Ordinarily I would say not to be too argumentative when it comes to logic, however make exceptions when the Gospel is at stake. Always pray before you begin a discussion on these matters, as they can escalate rather quickly. And, of course, my beloved friends, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Twisted Tuesday – The Abundant Life

Beloved, todays twisted Tuesday is one that I’ve been considering for weeks. There’s sadly more Scriptures being taken out of context today than I can keep up with. This one is actually connected with something I’ve been wanting to address, this man-centered focus that has invaded every part of life. Whether it’s the Me Too movement, or the prosperity Gospel, from secular to religious, we’ve made man the idol we worship in the West. So the verse we’re going to untwist today is John 10:10.

The dismal part of these verses being misused is that their true meaning is missed. In chapter 10 of Johns Gospel Jesus tells us one of the most unbelievable truths in Scripture, that He is our Shepard and will lay down His life for us. He says that we’ll hear His voice and know Him. What happens when you just snatch those two words out of this verse? You get a man-centered gospel that’s all about having an abundant life, healthy and wealthy, here and now.

It goes far deeper, and is much more sinful, than most realize. We expect the world to worship idols, and to hold all the glory for itself. However, when those professing to be followers of Christ make man the center they steal the glory due God. Christ did not die so you and I could have an abundant life, He died in our place to pay the penalty of our sin. He died to save us from the wrath that is to come. Suggesting otherwise is preaching a completely different gospel. Recall, dear friends, that wealth and power were the very things Satan tempted Christ with in the desert. Is it any surprise we see the same tactic being used today by false teachers?

Friends, the fuel behind the man-centered focus in our world today is emotionalism. We no longer ask what the Bible says, rather what does it say to you? Not what was done at the cross, but how does it make you feel? We’ve received this amazing gift by the grace of God, let us spend our time here on Earth glorifying God because of it. As always, brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Series on Plants Part I- Imbibition

Beloved I have to be honest with you all, I had absolutely no idea what I was going to write about on Mondays now that we’ve finished our trek through Noah’s Flood. In my morning readings I happened upon 1 Corinthians 15 and could not contain my excitement! I had to read it through a second time. If you take the amazing advice given by John MacAuthor and pick a certain section of Scripture to read daily until it becomes apart of you may I recommend this chapter? It’s so good that it’s started me off on a new Monday series!

Seeds! We’re going to work through the steps a seed goes through to become a full grown plant. The intricacies of Gods creation never cease to amaze me! Seeds are no different. As you may know, dry seeds can remain that way for years, some even for centuries, and still be able to grow when water is introduced. The process where the seed changes to draw in water is called imbibition, the clip below shows how very elaborate the mechanism is.

Granted, that clip is a little dryer than the usual videos I find, pun fully intended! However, the point is clearly made that there is much more to plant growth than meets the eye. Without imbibition a seed wouldn’t be able to be moved by the wind, Animals, or even humans, like they do now. The Creator has deliberately designed seeds this way so that they could spread. What a wonderful God we serve, brethren! I pray this series will bless you all, dear ones, and as always be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Hymns from the Past – By Grace I’m Saved

By grace I’m saved, grace free and bound-less;

My soul, be-lieve and doubt it not.

Why stag-ger at this word of prom-ise?

Has Scrip-ture ev-er false-hood taught?

No; then this word must true re-main:

By grace you too shall heav’n ob-tain.

By grace! None dare lay claim to mer-it;

Our works and con-duct have no worth.

God in His love sent our Re-deem-er,

Christ Je-sus, to this sin-ful earth;

His death did for our sins a-tone,

And we are saved by grace a-lone.

By grace! O mark this word of prom-ise

When you are by your sins op-pressed,

When Sa-tan plagues your trou-bled con-science,

And when your heart is seek-ing rest.

What rea-son can-not com-pre-hend

God by His grace to you will send.

By grace! This ground of faith is cer-tain;

So long as God is true, it stands.

What saints have penned by in-spi-ra-tion,

What in His Word our God com-mands,

What our whole faith must rest up-on,

Is grace a-lone, grace in His Son.

Christian L. Scheidt