Welcome to the May 30, 2007 Newsletter
Mini-devotional - Thank you for 1 John 1:9
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness," (1 John 1:9). There was this young man I used to know in my youth. I would like to speak to him again so I might rebuke him and correct his errant ways. I would like to talk sense into him and tell him how to avoid some serious sins and their consequent future anguish. But, that foolish young man is gone, never to be seen again -- I hope. He is a shadow now, a memory of self-centeredness and sin, a ghost from a past life.
Yet, that young man has left me with memories that I have tried to forget. But the Lord brought to surface a particular sin in a very sudden, unexpected, and profound conviction. So, I found myself struggling with a memory and suffering from it with a newfound pain and shame.
It hurt to remember what I was capable of doing in my youth.
Why did the Lord choose this day, after all these years, to bring this issue to light with renewed strength and guilt? I don't know. But, after hours of trying to ignore it, and avoid God in the process, I finally chose to confess my sins not only to God, but also to someone who I love and trust. You see, for some reason I needed to speak about it. I needed to confess it with audible words. I don't know why I needed to. I just did. So, I told my wife about that old sin and cried while confessing. This sin didn't involve her, but I needed her to hear it. I needed my wife to hear my words.
She touched me with a gentle hand, kind words, and spoke about forgiveness in Jesus.
But, the most important person I had to confess my sins to was the Lord. Of course, I know he is eager and willing to forgive. That is how he is. Therefore, it was with confidence that I finally approached him, yet again, in confession and, by his grace, was cleansed once more. I am so glad for 1 John 1:9 and its demonstration of love, commitment, and forgiveness that flows from the heart of God through the person of Jesus. God forgives because of Jesus. I am forgiven because of Jesus.
Are their sins in your life that you have suppressed? If so, has your suppression moved you further away from God and caused you to be uncomfortable when contemplating the things of God? If this is the case, confess your sins to the Lord and, if need be, to those whom you have offended. Receive forgiveness, kindness, grace, and peace from the Lord and only he can give. God is faithful, even when we are not.
Santa Cruz, CA Trip
Last week my wife and I drove down to Santa Cruz California to interview a pastor and check out his church. The pastor was Dan Kimball and he is the head of an emerging church called Vintage Faith. As I said in the previous newsletter, the emerging church seeks to reach the lost with the Christian gospel by adapting to present day culture. There are many critics of the emerging church as well as proponents. Some emerging churches are so liberal they aren't even Christian. But, others are very orthodox. As with most things, there is is good and bad.
It was Memorial Day weekend and there were over 200 people attending the 7 p.m., Sunday evening service. You have to remember that this is in Santa Cruz, perhaps the drug capital of California and is heavily situated within a surfing and new age type culture. The fact that 200 people, mostly young, chose to attend a service on Sunday evening was great to see.
Dan preached a message on the deity of Christ and I thought he nailed it very well.
In fact, I felt comfortable in the service and would have no problem attending it again in the future.
In a couple of weeks I hope to go to Seattle and, Washington, and attend to other emerging churches. One is quite orthodox and the other, well, I'm not sure where it stands. It should be interesting and I'll continue my research and writing on this.
Finally, we drove down on Saturday, attended two churches on Sunday, and came back on Monday. In all, I drove about 26 hours and traveled over 1600 miles (including a wrong turn that cost us two hours). Needless to say, I was quite tired when we finally got home. Why didn't my wife and I fly? Because CARM didn't have the money for airfare and car rental. It only cost about $150 in gas for the round trip since my car gets 33 miles per gallon. Whew!
Seattle, WA Sponsorship
As I mentioned in the last newsletter, I still plan to travel to Seattle, Washington during the weekend of June 9 through 12th. There are two emerging churches there and I would like to attend both of them. So, I'm looking for sponsors to cover the costs of gas and hotel.
This is the same as the last newsletter: Ryan Turner is a student at Norman Geisler's Graduate school who, Lord willing, will graduate next year with a Masters in apologetics. He has expressed a very strong desire to work with CARM. Ryan will be flying out to Boise on June 8 and will stay here for 10 days, in our home. This is so he can check us out to see if he wants to make a commitment to work with CARM by moving here next year. Anyway, I plan to drive from Boise to Seattle with Ryan and stay there for two, three, or four days while we check out two emerging churches and also, hopefully, the Discovery Institute that works with intelligent design theory. Again, if anyone would be willing to sponsor us for our trip up there (hotel and gas), please let me know. Or, if someone has a spare couple of rooms in their home for a few days, that would be fine, too. My car gets great gas mileage and has GPS navigation so directions aren't a problem, nor is traveling an hour (or less) to get to the churches should we find lodging at a distance. So, if you want to help out, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next weekend, I might also be going to the east side of Idaho to a city called Rexburg. The plan is to go Saturday night, get a hotel, and attend a church service the following morning. There is a Calvary Chapel opening up there in the midst of a very heavy Mormon population. I was told that cover Chapel had some difficulty with the Mormons during a preliminary "test" service in that area. I wanted to attend, take notes, and support this pastor and congregation in their difficult task. I'll let you know if and when I go and what happens
Man! researching video camera stuff is tedious. Is there anybody out there who knows enough about video cameras to be able to give me a recommendation? I need a camera (or two) that is high enough quality to produce DVD presentations, has an audio input jack, and will produce video that can be edited on a computer. Does anyone have any recommendations? Oh, one more thing. I have $2000 to work with to either get one camera or two. I would prefer to have two cameras to produce videos with different angles, not to mention to have a backup. However, it might be necessary to buy a single camera and work with that.
Again, I'm looking for somebody who has some expertise in this area and could make recommendations. By the way, which is better, 3ccd, cmos, or HD? And, I have concluded that I probably should use MiniDV for storage. I'm open to suggestions.
Are you interested in purchasing advertising space on CARM? If so, please let me know at email@example.com. CARM gets about 400,000 unique visitors a month.
One more thing, I'm new at the idea of having someone advertise on CARM. Of course, whoever did would have to be acceptable to CARM is a Ministry. Also, does anyone have any idea what would be acceptable rates for charging for advertising on CARM? If you know, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know. Thank you.
By way of reminder, if any of you are interested in perhaps one of the very best, if not the best, Bible programs available, please check out http://www.logos.com/carm. I use it all the time. If you purchase software through the CARM link, you can get a discount and it helps to support CARM as well.
If you get anything at Logos, use CARM as the coupon code during checkout.
Love and Hate Mail
Same as Last Newsletter
From the CARM Theological Dictionary
Be fishers of men, not keepers of the aquarium
Rev. Matt Slick, your missionary to the Internet. Equipping the church to defend the faith in a secular society.
Walvoord, John F., and Zuck, Roy B., The Bible Knowledge Commentary, (Wheaton, Illinois: Scripture Press Publications, Inc.) 1983, 1985.