November 27th, 2013 | By admin
by Katt Anderson
Tomorrow those in the United States will be celebrating Thanksgiving Day. It’s a day we set aside to be thankful for what we have and to recognize those who fled religious indifference to come to the New World where they could worship God the way they wanted to, the way they believed right. We forget what they suffered and enjoy the day with food, parades, and football games.
It’s strange to believe that not everyone celebrated Thanksgiving Day on the fourth Thursday of November. That was made a law in 1941 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The day is set aside for us as a national holiday. In fact, the whole week-end is a holiday for some.
We talk about the first Thanksgiving in Pilgrim Rock, Massachusetts. In history books we’ve read about the difficult times the Pilgrims had that first year. Most of the people knew nothing about farming. They had to clear the land and build houses to live in. It had to be difficult, but they persevered and now over two hundred years later we have a wonderful country.
Should our thanks be only to those who went before us in this country? I’m reminded of the many blessings I have by living here in the United States. Although some are in need, most of us have more than we deserve. God has blessed us richly. We have food, clothing, and shelter. We have freedom to find a job we like, not one we are forced to do. We have freedom to move around in this country, live in different places, and visit many lands. We are blessed.
So tomorrow when you sit down to turkey, dressing, and all the other trimmings, remember God gave these gifts to you. Remember God loved you so much that He sent His Son to die so you might have forgiveness of sins.
At this time, I’m thankful to all of you who read this humble blog. Your encouragement is appreciated.
November 25th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
In Matthew 10, we have recorded what is often times called the “Limited Commission.” It is called the limited commission because it does not consist of the universal message, the universal plan, or the universal purpose. Today, we live under the “Great Commission,” because it was given to everyone for everyone (Mat. 28:18-20). However, we can still learn from this commission Christ gave to His twelve apostles. Consider these points…
Verse 8 – “Freely you have received, freely give.” We, as Christians, are recipients of the grace of God. At one time we were not. Someone presented us with the Gospel message, whether it was a preacher, our parents, friends, spouse, or someone else. We are saved to save. We may be the contributing factor to someone else’s salvation.
Verses 11-15 – “Whosoever shall not receive you, shake off the dust of your feet.” Christ said it another way in the Sermon on the Mount: “Neither cast your pearls before swine” (Matt. 7:6). Be careful not to discourage yourself by spending too much time on someone who is not interested or refuses to listen. There are too many souls at stake for us to spin our wheels. Perhaps someone else will be able to effectively pick up where you left off. It very often takes more than one person to convert a soul. “I panted, Apollos watered, God gave the increase” (1 Cor. 3:6).
Verses 16-29. “You shall be hated of all men, for my name’s sake.” Paul said it this way, “preach the word, be ready in season and out of season” (2 Tim. 4:2). It cost John his head in Matthew 14 because he preached the truth. Also remember, “friendship of the world is enmity with God” (James 4:4).
Verses 30-31. “You are of more value than many sparrows.” Is it not true that the angels in heaven rejoice over one sinner that repents? (Luke 15:7). Souls are valuable. Souls are dying. It is worth every ounce of our being to try and save those on the road to destruction.
Verses 40-42. “You shall receive the righteous man’s reward.” That’s why we’re in it. Heaven is our goal. Do we not love that goal enough to want to share it with others? Do we not love that goal enough to do as God has commanded? Remember, “Go ye” means “go me.”
November 20th, 2013 | By admin
By Katt Anderson
Lately I have been unable to write on this blog myself. I appreciate Paul Holland for allowing me to use his nice posts. Paul is a dedicated preacher of the gospel with two teen girls. He and his wife are special to us.
Since my surgery and recovery, I’ve become aware of how God’s children take care of each other. We have been fed royally. Gifts have been bestowed on us. I’ve wondered how people who have no church family exist when something happens to them and their family. Through the years, our church family has been there for us when we lost loved ones or there was tragic illness.
That’s how God planned it. He wants us to help each other. We are told in 1 Peter 5:6-7, “ 6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” That’s how a Christian deals with problems. We know He cares for us, if we care for Him.
How wonderful it is to be around Christians who love you with all their heart. We are truly blessed to have these acquaintances. We are truly blessed to be loved by so many.
Yes, things happen for good. We don’t understand it, but it does work out. God blesses us if we love and obey him.
November 18th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
Recently, our family watched the 1962 musical,The Music Man. It stars Robert Preston as a charlaton, Harold Hill, who travels from city to city conning people out of their money, pretending to prepare a boys band. Usually, he gets the music teacher on his side. This time, he does not anticipate falling in love with the town piano teacher and librarian, Marian Paroo, played by Shirley Jones.
At one point toward the end of the movie, when he realizes he is in love with her, they are talking and she tries to put him off until tomorrow. Hill responds: “Oh, my dear little librarian. You pile up enough tomorrows, and you’ll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don’t know about you, but I’d like to make today worth remembering.”
The Scriptures teach the same thing relative to tomorrow. On one hand, Jesus teaches us: “do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:34). Don’t borrow from tomorrow’s anxieties; handle today’s and that will be enough. We need to learn to live one day at a time and live it with enthusiasm for our service to Christ.
But Paul also encourages us: “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16). In this context, Paul teaches us to use our time the best we can, walking carefully and wisely. Procrastination is the thief of productivity.
In order not to have a “lot of empty yesterdays,” we should use today as wisely as possible. Seize the day and perform what you can get done today. My grandfather would say, “Why do today what you can put off until tomorrow because tomorrow you may not have to do it?” But that’s why he drove a car with poor shock absorbers – the shocks sat on his garage shelf for years. Dad would ask Grandpa why he hadn’t put the shocks on; Grandpa would respond, “They’ll last longer there.” But then, do they dry rot? Were they worth anything?
It takes decisiveness to make decisions today and follow through with them today. It takes faith that God will work all things together for our good. We ought not to do things rashly; we should do them saturated with prayer. But, don’t procrastinate! Do them. Make the most of your time. You can’t control tomorrow. You can control what you do today.
Do you need to show your love for someone? Do it today. Do you need to serve someone? Do it today. Do you need to stop a sinful habit and begin a healthy habit? Do it today. “If you pile up enough tomorrows, you’ll find that you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays.”
November 15th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
Two little boys were each given a box of chocolates by their grandfather. The first boy took the package into his bedroom, tore into it, and stuffed the candies into his mouth until he was one big mess of smeared chocolate. The other boy unwrapped his package there in front of his grandfather. He opened the box and looked at all the candies. Then he raised the box to his grandfather and said, “Thank you for giving me this candy. Here. You have the first piece.”
The little boy gave to his grandfather because his grandfather first gave to him. Today, we give because God first gave to us. I want us to consider our sharing with others in light of the “Open hands of God…”
Psalm 104 is “an extended celebration of the goodness and awesome character of creation” (Brueggman, 31). As you read through the psalm, you notice what God does. He “makes the winds His messengers” (vs 4). He “established the earth” (vs 5). He “sends forth springs” (vs 10). He “causes the grass to grow” (vs 14). It is evident that God brought the world into existence and He sustains the world continually by His power.
Jumping down to verse 24, God has made many works, in wisdom. The earth is full of His belongings. Among His works are: The sea and its swarms, animals (small and great) and Leviathan, which is arguably some type of dinosaur like creature (Job 41). All these animals depend on God for food – He provides with His “open hand” (vs 28). His power extends to extinguishing life (vs 29) and creating life (vs 30). So, God’s glory will last forever – vs 31.
I want you to underline in your Bibles that expression: “You open your hand.” God gives. Now…
Based on Psalm 104, we sing as long as we live – to praise God – vs 33. We meditate on Him and His greatness, His wisdom, His power – vs 34. We are glad in the Lord – vs 34.
But also, we give because God first gave to us. He is “open-handed,” therefore we ought to be open-handed. We share that open-handed generosity with others…
Jesus was concerned with the physical needs of others - Luke 7:11-17. So should we.
Jesus teaches us to be concerned about the physical needs of others - Matt. 25.
The church and Christians are to continue this “open-handed” benevolence of God - Hebrews 13:1-2; Galatians 6:10.
Churches can combine their contributions to help a larger work - 1 Cor. 16:1-3.
We are to help widows and orphans - James 1:27.
Be open-handed with others. God has been with you.
November 11th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
Last night on the way home, I told the girls about the invasion of Normandy. June 6, 1944. Operation Overlord. Pointe du Hoc is the highest cliff between Omaha Beach and Utah Beach. Two-hundred twenty-five rangers climbed those cliffs. Two days later, only 90 could still fight. Many men gave their lives during that invasion but it was a successful effort in the overall war to stop terrorism in the form of fascism and Nazism.
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan commemorated that invasion with a speech at Pointe du Hoc. Here is a few paragraphs from that speech:
“The men of Normandy had faith that what they were doing was right, faith that they fought for all humanity, faith that a just God would grant them mercy on this beachhead or on the next. It was the deep knowledge — and pray God we have not lost it — that there is a profound, moral difference between the use of force for liberation and the use of force for conquest. You were here to liberate, not to conquer, and so you and those others did not doubt your cause. And you were right not to doubt.
“You all knew that some things are worth dying for. One’s country is worth dying for, and democracy is worth dying for, because it’s the most deeply honorable form of government ever devised by man. All of you loved liberty. All of you were willing to fight tyranny, and you knew the people of your countries were behind you.
“…Something else helped the men of D-day: their rockhard belief that Providence would have a great hand in the events that would unfold here; that God was an ally in this great cause. And so, the night before the invasion, when Colonel Wolverton asked his parachute troops to kneel with him in prayer he told them: Do not bow your heads, but look up so you can see God and ask His blessing in what we’re about to do. Also that night, General Matthew Ridgway on his cot, listening in the darkness for the promise God made to Joshua: “I will not fail thee nor forsake thee.”
More than the words of President Reagan, the example of those courageous men is inspiring. Americans have not always done the right thing. But generally, our country has tried to do the noble deed. We were founded to be a free country, united by ideals, not enslaved by aristocrats. We have shed blood, not to conquer new lands but to free new people.
Our country believes that freedom is a gift given by God, not by the government. We believe every man, woman, and child should have the right to pursue life, liberty, and happiness. Whether Caucasian, Black, Arabic, or Chinese – all men are created equal. In Korea, Japan, Germany, Vietnam, Beirut, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, our men and women have fought, many of died, to give and to preserve our freedom to worship freely and evangelize openly, to practice our religion unhindered by the state, to criticize our government without fear of reprisal, to assemble with whom we will and where and why.
Thank you, veterans. May we, the free, remember the words of Providence: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth” (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
November 4th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
Towering 5,725 feet above sea level, Mount Rushmore memorializes four of our American Presidents – Washington, Jefferson, T. Roosevelt, and Lincoln. It covers over 1,000 acres. The heads of these four presidents are each sixty-feet high.
Rushmore was the child of a Danish-American immigrant who was so thankful for his adopted country. His name was Gutzon Borglum. The challenge for Borglum was that he wanted to begin Mount Rushmore during the presidency of Calvin Coolidge. Among the items Coolidge is most famous is cutting the federal budget. But Borglum would need federal support to pull off this memorial.
The summer before Coolidge’s final year in office, Borglum was able to persuade him to spend a summer vacation there. He had Coolidge give a dedication speech, having been able to persuade Coolidge to agree to the federal funding. Borglum even suggested that he would put an image of Coolidge up among the other presidents.
Amity Shlaes finishes her chapter on this event in the presidency of Coolidge with this sentence: “There was a case for monuments to other presidents. But the best monument to his kind of presidency was no monument at all” (386).
“And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood” (Luke 22:19-20).
For someone who also eschewed material things, it is appropriate, is it not, that Jesus also chose for a monument – no monument at all. Bread and fruit from the vine. We are amazed at the simplicity of Christianity as Jesus designed it. Elements that are available all over the world that can be consumed – at least in minute amounts – by nearly everyone.
To memorialize the Son of God. The greatest gift ever given. The most astounding blessing ever visualized by man. Bread and fruit from the vine. Let us serve Him with the same simplicity and singleness of heart (Rom. 12:8; 2 Cor. 1:12; 11:3; Acts 2:46; Eph. 6:5; Col. 3:22)K
Thanks to Paul Holland for allowing me to use his Daily Droplets while I am recovering from surgery. Paul is a wonderful Christian and friend. I appreciate him so much. Katt Anderson
October 25th, 2013 | By admin
By Paul Holland
Once upon a time, an associate minister and his wife took a hike in the beautiful Tennessee state park, Standing Stone. It was around 3:30 that Saturday afternoon. Entering the trail, they did not know how long it would take to walk it. As the time approached 4:30, they found themselves on the other side of the lake from where they began.
They knew the sun would be setting around 5:00 or so, and they had an hour hike and only thirty-minutes of day-light left! What could be done? The minister, being the experienced outdoorsman that he was, decided to abandon the trail, as it would be hard to follow in the darkness. He decided they would follow the edge of the lake around to the dam, which they could see in the distance. If the sun set before they arrived at their destination, the moonlight reflecting off the lake would be a guide.
So they set off, off the beaten path. They had to back-track a good distance before finding a fallen tree they could walk across to the other side. Once on the other side, however, the hike turned into a chore. The hill side was sloped to a great degree. The ground was covered with thick leaves and were slippery. The evening was quickly turning into night-time. But they trudged on.
Eventually, they turned the bend and could see the dam; thankfully, the Christmas lights were still lit and could be easily seen. But the hill side turned into a gorge with fallen trees laying every way and the sun had set about fifteen minutes earlier. So they started scrambling over the trees, tired and sore. But just overhead, they heard a car pass by. The road leading to the dam was only a short hike away; albeit straight up the hill side! But with a little extra effort, they found themselves in safe territory. It was only a short walk from that point to the safety of their familiar vehicle.
For a minister, there were lots of lessons to learn! First, don’t start on a path when you don’t know the destination! “There is a way which seems right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Prov. 14:12).
Second, when hiking in the dark, take a flashlight! “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psa. 119:105). Third, don’t get off the path because then it is hard to get back on! “Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matt. 7:14).
Fourth, along the hike, there will be sore muscles and bruises. “I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus” (Gal. 6:17). Fifth, if you do get lost, keep your eyes on the light, and you’ll find your way. “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2).
“If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them” (John 13:17).
Paul Holland is the minister of Paris church of Christ, Paris, KY.
This is used by permission from Paris church of Christ, Living Water blog, Copyrighted, all rights reserved.
October 23rd, 2013 | By admin
Macroevolutionists often point the proverbial finger at the laws of probability in a pointless attempt to traverse the gaping chasms which exist in the theory of evolution and Big Bang Theory and thereby substantiate them. However, the gaps that exist, such as the origin of matter (cf. Miller, 2013), the origin of life (cf. Miller, 2012), and macroevolution (cf. Brooks and Deweese, 2009), are many and cannot be traversed without violation of recognized scientific laws. In spite of this dilemma, many evolutionists have long cited the principles of probability in an effort to support their dogma, noting that as long as the required events do not have a probability of zero, they are inevitable, given enough time (cf. Erwin, 2000). As far back as 1954, George Wald, writing in Scientific American concerning the origin of life on Earth, penned the words:
However improbable we regard this event, or any of the steps it involves, given enough time, it will almost certainly happen at least once. And for life as we know it, once may be enough. Time is the hero of the plot…. Given so much time, the impossible becomes possible, the possible becomes probable, and the probable becomes virtually certain. One has only to wait; time itself performs miracles (Wald, p. 48, emp. added).
There are at least two problems with this assertion. First, several of the events that are necessary in order for the theory of evolution and the Big Bang Theory to be true, indeed, have a probability of zero. So, the question is not really one of improbability, butimpossibility. There is absolutely no scientific evidence that supports the contention that, for instance, matter could spontaneously generate or life could come about from non-life (i.e., abiogenesis). In fact, quite the opposite is true. The experimental results of renowned scientist Louis Pasteur forever killed the possibility of the spontaneous generation of life back in the 19th century, and the Law of Biogenesis drove the nails into its coffin (cf. Miller, 2012). This truth creates an impenetrable barrier for evolutionists—a gaping chasm that must be crossed in order for the theory of evolution to be plausible. So, according to the scientific evidence, there is a probability of zero that abiogenesis can occur. According to the laws of probability, specifically Kolmogorov’s first axiom, when the probability of an event is zero, the event is called an “impossible event” (Gubner, 2006, p. 22, emp. added). Since several events that are necessary in order for the theory of evolution and the Big Bang Theory to be true have a probability of zero, according to the laws of probability, these atheistic theories are impossible.
The second problem with this contention is that we are not “given enough time” for macroevolution to have occurred. We at Apologetics Press have documented this fact time and time again (cf. Jackson, 1983; Thompson, 2001). Years ago, in his article “The Young Earth,” Henry Morris listed 76 dating techniques, based on standard evolutionary assumptions, which all indicate that the Earth is relatively young (Morris, 1974). Donald DeYoung documented extensive, compelling evidence for a young Earth as well, in the bookThousands…Not Billions (2005). Of course, such information is not broadcasted widely due to its implications. If atheistic evolutionists were sincerely interested in the truth—if they were interested in giving all options a fair shake—they would hear the silent but forceful cry of the evidence: “Macroevolution is impossible! There is a God!”
Brooks, Will and Joe Deweese (2009), “A Response to the 21st Century Science Coalition Standards of Science Education,” Reason & Revelation, 29:41-43, June,http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/240161.
DeYoung, Donald (2005), Thousands…Not Billions (Green Forest, AR: Master Books).
Erwin, Douglas (2000), “Macroevolution is More Than Repeated Rounds of Microevolution,”Evolution and Development, 2:78-84.
Gubner, J. A. (2006), Probability and Random Processes for Electrical and Computer Engineers(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press).
Jackson, Wayne (1983), “Our Earth—Young or Old?” [On-line], URL:http://www.apologeticspress.org/rr/reprints/yng-old.pdf.
Miller, Jeff (2012), “The Law of Biogenesis [Part I],” Reason & Revelation, 32:2-11, January,http://apologeticspress.org/apPubPage.aspx?pub=1&issue=1018&article=1722.
Miller, Jeff (2013), “Evolution and the Laws of Science: The Laws of Thermodynamics,” Apologetics Press, http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=2786.
Morris, H. (1974), “The Young Earth,” Acts & Facts, 3, http://www.icr.org/article/young-earth.
Thompson, Bert (2001), “The Young Earth,” [On-line], URL:http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/1991.
Wald, George (1954), “The Origin of Life,” Scientific American, 191:45-53, August.
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