Archive | May, 2008

More Important Than Spuds

30 May
BBC News has suggested that Genetically Modified (GM) foods could be the answer to the global food crisis. In Britain, whilst GM crops are not illegal, “the regulations mean it is a hostile environment for the agri-business brigade”. This creates the absurd situation that in the United Kingdom people are discouraged from experimenting on potatoes but the government has passed legislation allowing scientists to create human embryos for research. Human beings are being created to experiment on and recently our nation has plunged further down this research path by allowing the creation of “hybrid human-animal embryos after MPs overwhelmingly voted in favour of radical stem cell research” (Telegraph). Our nation allows humans to be experimented on without their permission before destroying these unborn children after just 14 days of life. I don’t know alot regarding the GM Food debate but surely this means that the people of Britain now value spuds over babies.

Part of the reason GM foods are deemed unacceptable is the effective work of pressure groups such as Greenpeace and well co-ordinated protests designed to place the issue on the agenda. Some of the most obvious examples are when some eco-protestors “chained themselves to the dairy aisle in a Sainsbury’s supermarket” in 2004 (BBC) and in 2001 when “Eight people were arrested and one injured during a protest against Wales’s only remaining GM crop trial. ” (BBC)

Is there not lessons that can be learned in the fight against abortion?

Why are people willing to take such action over fields of maize and there’s no-one picketing outside Downing Street 24-7 against the murder of unborn children?

I’m not calling for the extreme and immoral actions as seen in America as protestors blow up abortion clinics and murder doctors. These actions are wrong and they weaken the Pro-life case. But surely we should be taking some form of direct action, gaining media attention and placing the issue on the public agenda. If abortion is murder why does it not seem to bother us much? There is a genocide of the unborn in our own land and we are doing so little to stop it. Maybe GM Foods is an important issue but there can be no doubt abortion is infinitely more important. What are you doing about it?
23 week old baby inside the womb, one week under the legal limit for abortion in Britain

Do Muslims need converted?

26 May

A row has eurrupted in the Church of England over the campaign of a trainee-priest, Paul Eddy, “for the Church of England to work explicitly to convert Muslims to Christianity”(BBC News). The motion will be debated at the upcoming General Synod in York and has provoked angry reactions not only from Muslims but from within the Anglican church itself.

Bishop of Urban Life and Faith Stephen Lowe has said that the motion shows “no sensitivity to the need for good inter-faith relations. Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs are learning to respect one another’s paths to God and to live in harmony. This demand for the evangelisation of people of other faiths contributes nothing to our communities.”(Telegraph)

Rt Rev Stephen Lowe, the former Bishop of Hulme and the newly appointed Bishop of Urban Life and Faith
Lowe’s Bible (if he owns such an wildly insensitive book!) must be missing a few verses.
John 14:6
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”
Unless I’m reading incorrectly the verse says “the way” not “a way” and “No one” rather than “Everyone”. Lowe’s talk of “one another’s paths to God” is heresy. The Bible clearly teaches there is only one way for sinful man to be reconcilled to God, through Christ’s death on the cross. Not through Islam and not through our own efforts to get right with God.
Matthew 28:19
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
Matthew 10:34-36
“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn
” ‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law –
man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.'”
Doesn’t sound like Jesus was asking us to focus on building “good inter-faith relations” instead we’ve been given a life saving message to spread. Our message is offensive as it tells people they are sinners and need a Saviour and Jesus has warned us that this will bring division and hostility. However ultamitely living in harmony with God and our fellow man is only possible through the Gospel which and nothing can be more beneficial for a community than the conversion of sinners.
It’s really sad when professing Christians send out such mixed messages to the world. We have a responsibility and a priviledge to share the Gospel with the world and we should be making special efforts to tell the Good News to those under the delusion of Islam and not being afraid of offending people. In the past missionaries went out from Britain across the world, now the world is coming to Britain and we have a mutli-racial mission field on our doorsteps. Maybe it would help to think of it this way, if you saw someone drowning you wouldn’t hold back a life ring incase of embarrassing and angering a non-swimmer, would you?

May Quote of the Month

23 May

Yes, your eyes do not decieve you, its me……….Alastair! Sorry faithful readers and true believers, my commitment to the DMFWS cause has been lacking of late as exams are on at the minute but i’m here with this months quote (I resisted to change quote of the month to picture after James last post!)

After Answers in Genesis were recently at the Waterfront, Lorna came home with a DVD on Noahs Ark and after watching I came across a quote which after the latest appeal for GO Team members should gear you up for action this summer!

God has no fans…….we are all players……..get in the game!! Dr. Charles Ware

P.S Ryan Giggs told interviewers this week the Champions League Trophy was quite like a Chocolate Orange………..”its not Terrys, its mine…….”

John Terry

22 May

Careers and Empty Dreams

15 May

Every Thursday I have two periods of school for “Careers” lessons. Recently we were told the principle reason for going to university was those with degrees tend to earn more money, our teacher pointed to this article from the Guardian as evidence. Don’t get me wrong, I hope to go to university too but money isn’t the motivation. We can swallow the world’s philosophy so easily.

Here’s what the Writer to the Hebrews said of Moses:

“He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of
Egypt, for he was looking to the reward.” Hebrews 11:26

I don’t think Moses would have chosen a career based on money, he was looking to the reward beyond this life. Don’t buy into the world’s empty dreams.

A Tragedy In The Making

Major on the Minors

8 May
This is the fifth part of the series “How to be a Completely Ineffective Church Member” by Rev.McCullough which have previously appeared in the Messenger.

Communication from the dark side states that we do not need much counsel on this line of pursuit of ineffectiveness, it seems to come so naturally to us. There are several strands of thought that you simply must never pursue lest your slip sliding away into the vague mists of ineffectiveness come to an abrupt end: namely the glory of God in all you do, growing in Christian maturity, reaching the lost with the gospel and developing church life so that the world is aware what grace can do in people’s lives.

It is much more beneficial to give your time, thought and energies to dwelling on the minors of life. On a personal level when you read your Bible major on the minors: who the author of Hebrews is, was behemoth a dinosaur, did Adam and Eve have a belly button! On no account start any in depth Bible study with a good reading note or devotional commentary. Do not make any effort to get to grips with the central doctrines of who God is, who man is, what propitiation, justification and sanctification are, or grapple with the work of the Holy Spirit, or what the Bible says about heaven and hell. Stick to the focussing on the minors: should we use shortbread or pan loaf for communion; did the disciples drink alcoholic wine at the Lord’s supper or just grape juice; how far west did Paul actually journey. With regard to your minister major on his minors: he doesn’t wear a collar, he has a rather strange way of pronouncing certain words and of course that strange eye catching twitch. Don’t think about his faithfulness and compassion as he preaches the Word or his attentiveness to your great aunt Sally when she was dying in the nursing home.

In CY you want to ensure that your whole programme is based round minors and not majors. Each year have a good smattering of topics like: should we call it Sabbath or Sunday; should minister’s wear clerical collars or not; should Christians tithe their gross or net salary; should jeans be allowed in church; should God only be addressed by Thee and Thou. After a few years of such debates your young people will be ready for majoring on the minors in the wider congregational level. At a congregational level it is vital that whenever you get the opportunity drop in the Bible version debate. This discussion is excellent for clogging up the wheels of progress and even usually adds in a few grains of gravely disharmony. You want also to give a good deal of your time to considering the wording of the New Psalter. Spend hours pouring over each of the carefully translated psalms comparing them with the words you know from your past. Try and engage as many others as you can on these matters.

Whenever opportunity arises for discussion on the way forward for your congregation, again the minors are best for ineffectiveness. Stick to things like: should the psalm tunes be up on the board for visitors; what colour of paint will send out the best message to passers by. Avoid like the plague any discussion regarding how to enhance the spiritual life of the members, what could be done to foster family worship or how to help the elders in their Christ given task of oversight.
Try and help those in leadership to see that they should be focussing much of their thinking and energy on whether we should or shouldn’t use communion tokens, what dress style is appropriate for worship. If you hear of any straying unto topics like addressing the life threatening seeping away of our young people, helping ministers be better preacher and pastors; in service training for elders, plans for revitalising weak congregations and stimulating growth or even days of prayer, beware for all your efforts at ineffectiveness will come to naught.

Bible Bit to avoid: II Peter 1:3-11
Dromore RPC