THIS is Christianity

Mottel Baleston
check out this video (it will pop up in a new window)
     For many people religion is more of a cultural thing to appreciate and keep around like one does a family heirloom. It looks good on the shelf in the living room, but you don’t really use it all that much in real life.  For others, it’s just …foreign. At least, that’s often the impression given by the comments and reactions to religious expression we see from the talking heads of media and/or Hollywood.
     I’m probably being generous. Hollywood hasn’t understood Christianity or the Bible since the twelve apostles were still available to hire as consultants.
     And some of you… it’s okay to admit it…. won’t even get through the five-minute video above. After all, the Pew Research Center just informed us that Christianity is shrinking in America while the numbers of people with no affiliation with any religion, including atheists, and agnostics are growing. That’s especially true for anyone more youthful than 36 years of age.  So hey, if that’s you, then perhaps you don’t really care that some guy named Mottel Baleston decided to become a Christian after growing up Jewish.

     I understand. And I’m not posting this video to win any of these arguments. I’m posting this because THIS is Christianity.

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Why Bible Lessons Are Often Boring

I picked up my weekly reading material at the church today. It’s a magazine called the Lookout, which let me say, is often a wonderful read. It is the standard magazine for independent Christian Churches, along with its little brother “The Christian Standard.” Ministers and writers from Christian Churches and the independent Churches of Christ do most of the writing in these publications. It is often thoughtful, insightful, very deep and filled with (as we like to say in the ministry) “meat.”

If you’re a vegetarian, what would you use as a figure of speech? “That’s got a lot of …fiber… in it?” yeahhh, not sure veggies can substitute as well in a sentence…

At any rate, the Lookout has been running a 3 week series on the minor prophets. The minor prophets are the books of the Old Testament after Ezekiel, which would include Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. (Yes I did write those without looking.) They are called minor prophets simply because they are shorter books, not because they are less important. In fact, many of the Scriptures contained in these books are right smack in the middle of controversial topics such as those surrounding the return of Christ and the end of the world.

Which is why it strikes me as such a shame that we can so easily take these Scriptures and write boring articles about them. Continue reading