Showing posts from March, 2017


Read: John 18:26-33

    There are many variations to the origin of the carol Silent Night. All agree to the time, 1818, place, Obendorf, Austria, author, Joseph Mohr, and composer, Franz Gruber. In some accounts the hymn was only intended for a one-time performance. But when the tune’s composer played the hymn to test an organ repairman’s handiwork, the repairman so loved it that he sang it everywhere he went, planting the song in people’s hearts, as a sower sows seed, leading to its vast popularity.
    As John records the exchange between Jesus and Pilate, we find encouragement for our responsibility to share the Gospel. Pilate's question in verse 33 is foundational, “Are You the King of the Jews?” Although he had no intention of recognizing Jesus' true identity or the nature of His kingdom, still 50 days in their future, that did not discourage Jesus from answering in verse 36, “My kingdom is not of this world." We must be careful to not allow the world's seeming dis…

Reports of His Death

There are three dates you should keep in mind as you read this article: 1897, 1900, 2012.
    The first is the most debatable because the circumstances have, ironically, been exaggerated. One of the most popular versions has it that while Mark Twain was in London an American newspaper erroneously printed the humorist's obituary. When asked to comment on this mistake Twain reportedly replied, "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated." Twain would go on living for another 13 years.
    The second date, 1900, was the year that German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche passed away. He was 55 years old. He is perhaps best known for his observation, printed in various works, declaring that "God is dead." In intervening years his comment, and what various writers suppose he meant by it, have been widely debated.
    The third date is 2012. In that year American theologian William Hamilton died. Hamilton is perhaps best known for an article appearing in the April 8, …

The Wrong Orders

    Train wrecks. They don't happen that often, fortunately. But if you ever see an interview with a survivor of such a terrifying experience you will probably be able to STILL see the horror etched into their faces.
    A few years back evangelist G. F. Raines related the story of a terrible collision between two speeding trains. Both trains were barreling down the same track in opposite directions on a foggy, moonless night. Both engineers, realizing the danger, threw on their brakes in a futile attempt to stop their trains. As rescue workers systematically picked through the wreckage they discovered one of the engineers pinned inside his locomotive. Holding in his hand a yellow sheet of paper he pitifully explained, "Someone gave the wrong orders."
    In one of the final scenes ever written by inspiration the apostle John describes the final judgment (Rev. 20:11-15). With all of humanity gathered about the throne of God the books are opened and the dead will be judged.…

Why "Daylight Saving Time"?

    There are, based on how daylight saving time (DST) is currently implemented in the United States, two types of time. "Standard" is determined by our established time zones that stretch across the country while "daylight" time is the adjusted time in those areas where DST is observed (Hawaii and most of Arizona are excluded). Standard time was first established by the railroads in 1883 to regulate their schedules rather than having inconsistent times from one station to another. It would be another 35 years before standard time would be set by an act of Congress.
    The idea of DST was first introduced in the U.S. in 1909 by Andrew Peters, but the bill had only a short, unproductive life. It would not be until the U.S. involvement in World War I that standard time would be set by Congress. Included in that 1918 ruling on standard time was the first introduction of DST in America. Strong resistance to the annual time adjustment would lead to that part of the law …