Sophia’s Choice

We live in a world where there is a great deal of knowledge.  Indeed, some say the sum total of human knowledge doubles every 13 months.  Yes, we know a lot.  Is this is a good thing?  Yes.    But a better question is this, do we know what to do with this knowledge?  Another way to put this, are we wise?  You see, wisdom and knowledge are not exactly the same thing. Continue reading

Technology Bound?

Right now I am working from my home.  Unusual for me, especially on a Monday.  I did go into the office today for a couple of hours, but left.  The IT guy for ANM, Stan, is installing a new network server.  This is quite a job in itself, but when you have to link 65 individual computers together, and have them interface properly with the network, it is a monumental chore.  Kudos to Stan for all his hard work.  Anyway, what this means for me is that my computer was not quite up to par today.  I couldn’t access many files that I need, since they are stored on the network.  So work just got more and more frustrating.  So I came home, figuring I could get more work done here.

While driving home, the current situation at the office made me think of how dependent we have become on technology.  And what can happen without it.  Think about it.  Networks go down.  You lose internet access.  The power goes out.  Result?  Work stops.  We are largely technology bound in America today. Continue reading

After Death… Then What?

At Advancing Native Missions we are now in a period of mourning.  We have just recently lost one of the oldest members of our staff.  The Reverend Gordon Shira was a part of ANM from the very beginning.  Following a successful and varied ministerial career, he had spent the past 25 years doing volunteer work in our offices.  He served as the mission chaplain for decades.  He also did clerical work in our receipting department since the earliest days of this ministry.  He was a generous, kind-hearted and deeply devout man of God.  We will miss him greatly.

Being conscious of Gordon’s passing has made me aware of the issue of death, of the mortality that we all face.  And it prompts me to write about death itself, and what happens when we die.  May I tell you that this is an area where there is an abundance of myth and misunderstanding.  Even in the church I often hear Christians make assertions about those who have died that are simply not true.  We do not know everything about what happens when we die.  But we do know quite a bit.  The Scriptures are very clear on a number of things. Continue reading

The Trinity – A Foundational Doctrine

I am convinced that the doctrine of the Holy Trinity is foundational to all Christian truth.  This is a rather bold statement.  Indeed, it is rather controversial.  There are some Christian teachers who would adamantly disagree with this.  They may accept the Trinity as a biblical doctrine, but they argue that acceptance of the Trinity is not essential in order to be a Christian.  While I honor their privilege to believe as they do, I must differ with this position most stringently.

I have dealt with this issue in an earlier post.  You can read for yourself regarding the question of the necessity of belief in the Trinity.  Allow me to summarize my argument for you.  First of all, we understand that salvation is experienced in a person’s life by that person repenting of sin, accepting Christ, and coming into a personal relationship with the Lord God.  Thus, relationship is at the heart of the Christian experience.  In this light, it is important to note the words of Christ in John 17:3, where He declares that eternal life consists of knowing the true God and the true Son of God.  In other words, without a relationship with the true God, there is no eternal life.  And thus, whether or not God is triune in His nature is necessary for salvation.  You cannot have a relationship with a false god and have eternal life.  If God is a monarchial, monolithic deity—one God, one Person—then to assert that you have a relationship with a triune God is a false premise.  You cannot have eternal life if you have a relationship with a deity that doesn’t exist. Continue reading

Are Mormons Christians?

This is a common question.  Many Christians think that the Latter-day Saint Church is simply another denomination, just like Southern Baptists or United Methodists.  It is simply one branch of the Christian tree.  This is not surprising.  The LDS Church has spent a lot of money in the past several decades to promote this idea.  They changed their logo to emphasize the words “Jesus Christ.”  They promote the Book of Mormon as “Another Testament of Jesus Christ.”  They have TV ads and promotional materials that present Mormons as clean cut, family-oriented, conservative Christians.  And their marketing campaign has worked.  Many, if not most, people think that Mormons are Christians. Continue reading