The goal of this bulletin is to keep you up to date with the International Bible Teaching ministry AND provide practical Bible study material through a report that you can read in 2-3 minutes.
25 February 2015

Hello from the Caribbean nation of Grenada! We're on the second stop on our tour. Here Vicki and I are sharing global Christian news, as well as principles from the surprisingly powerful epistle of Philemon. 

The last two newsletters featured a series on Judging. (If you missed this, take a peek in the previous newsletters.) This week we want to explore -- and explode -- a modern notion that muddies the waters of honest inquiry, and tilts the playing field decidedly against believers in God.

Many in our society find it hard to understand how a “loving God” would hold a "religious difference" against anyone. After all, aren’t we all worshiping the same God? In fact, a survey of 35,000 American adults shows that 70% believe there are many paths to God—all equally valid. Says Michael Lindsay of Rice University, “The survey shows religion in America is, indeed, 3000 miles wide and only 3 inches deep.” The problem is that people do not know why they believe what they believe, and certainly do not understand the uniqueness of the Christian system. Subscribing to such beliefs, they dismiss Jesus’ exclusive claim, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but by me” (John 14:6). Release by Eric Gorski, South Bend Tribune, June 24, 2008, page A3.


Religious persons are often accused of being judgmental, intolerant, and exclusivistic. What light does the Bible shed on the discussion? I invite you to listen to a podcast entitled Judging, Tolerance, Exclusivism.

Finally, I'd like to share a relevant quote from Edward John Carnell, in his inaugural address as president of Fuller Theological Seminary (1955). Carnell calls us to humble discernment. 

Whoever meditates on the mystery of his own life will quickly realize why only God, the searcher of the secrets of the heart, can pass final judgment. We cannot judge what we have no access to. The self is a swirling conflict of fears, impulses, sentiments, interests, allergies, and foibles. It is a metaphysical given for which there is no easy rational explanation. Now if we cannot unveil the mystery of our own motives and affections, how much less can we unveil the mystery in others? That is, as we look into ourselves, we encounter the mystery of our own, the depths of our own selfhood. As we sing things like “Just as I am, though tossed about with many a conflict, many a doubt, fightings within and fears without, O Lamb of God, I come.” And having recognized the mysteries that dwell in the very depths of our own being, how can we treat other people as if they were empty or superficial beings, without the same kind of mystery?
"More times"
This weekend we continue on to Trinidad, and then St. Vincent. We certainly appreciate your prayers for safe travel, as well as for the effectiveness of the ministry.

A Caribbean brother who lived in my university dormitory in London once taught me how to say "See ya later" in his own island culture. "We go sight breds." (We will see, brothers: go makes the verb [!] sight future; breds means brothers, or brethren.) A shorter saying is simply "More times."

May we see each other again, spend time together, connect again. "More times."

In Him,
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