Observations on life; particularly spiritual

Spiritual

Distant starlight and the biblical timeframe

The Bible makes it clear that the creation of the heavenly bodies was just as miraculous as the creation of the first peopleThis post comes from Dr Don Batten of Creation Ministries International.

The following question is often directed to Christians, ‘How can you believe in a straightforward biblical time-frame and explain distant starlight?’

The ‘problem’ is formulated thus:

  • The biblical time-frame is about 6,000 years since creation (“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”, Gen. 1:1)
  • There are stars that are millions and billions of light years distant that we can see. Travelling at the speed of light, the light from those stars would take millions or billions of years to travel to Earth, depending on the distance, so that we can see them.

(more…)


Natural selection is the opposite of Darwinian evolution

Natural selection can be proven to be true by the definition of the wordsThis post comes from Dr Jason Lisle of the Biblical Science Institute.

Natural selection is often claimed to be the mechanism by which Darwinian evolution occurs. And yet the scientific evidence shows that natural selection is actually the opposite of evolution.

What is Natural Selection?

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines natural selection as “a natural process that results in the survival and reproductive success of individuals or groups best adjusted to their environment and that leads to the perpetuation of genetic qualities best suited to that particular environment.” Other dictionaries and biology textbooks also support this definition. Basically, natural selection is the principle that organisms that have traits well-suited to their environment tend to survive and reproduce in greater numbers than organisms with traits that are not well-suited to their environment. In extreme cases, the organisms that are less suited to their environment are driven to extinction. (more…)


No one knows what tomorrow will bring

No one knows what tomorrow will bringHave you ever had to walk in the dark? I mean when it’s can’t-see-your-hand-in-front-of-your-face dark? For those of us not used to it, walking in the dark can be slow and scary. We may have an idea of a destination but we can’t always be sure we’re going in the right direction. We desperately search for something familiar or a sliver of light to guide us. (more…)


Love hurts

Love opens us up to grief and painDo you agree love hurts? Should it hurt? Is something wrong if it hurts? If we understand love as an unrelenting concern for another’s well-being, love does open us up to grief and pain in this broken world. When we love, we feel our loved ones suffering with them. When we love we are vulnerable to being hurt by our loved one’s words and actions. When we love we hurt. (more…)


The Lord’s Supper – until Jesus returns

General Douglas MacArthur wades ashore during initial landings at Leyte, Philippine Islands - 20 October 1944When General MacArthur was forced to leave the Philippines before Japanese forces conquered them in 1942 during World War 2, he said “I shall return”. On Oct. 20th, 1944 he fulfilled his plans and stepped ashore and said, “People of the Philippines: I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God our forces stand again on Philippine soil—soil consecrated in the blood of our two peoples. We have come dedicated and committed to the task of destroying every vestige of enemy control over your daily lives, and of restoring upon a foundation of indestructible strength, the liberties of your people.” (more…)


Prayer about Grandpop

Today Grandpop was buried at the Castle Hill cemetry in Sydney, Australia

A prayer given at my father-in-law’s funeral on 1 April 2022

Our God and Father, Creator of the universe, we give thanks for the life of Grandpop. We thank you that in the prime of life He trusted in Christ’s death for the forgiveness of his sins and eternal life in heaven (1 Th. 2:13). We thank you for the Christian faith and love evident in the remainder of his life (2 Th. 1:3).

We thank you that it’s not the end like it was for Shane Warne. Instead, it’s the beginning of life without the troubles of this world. Grandpop has left the building, left the planet and left the physical for the unseen spiritual world, which is far better for him (Phil. 1:23). It’s like being in an aircraft above the clouds where the sun is shining. (more…)


Just war principles

Civilians fleeing the Ukraine - more than 3 million fled the country after a month of warThis post comes from Bill Muehlenberg’s commentary on current issues, “Culture Watch”.

In a fallen world, war, the use of force, bloodshed, violence and aggression will always be with us. And that is because sin is always with us. So the believer knows that God established civil government to help curb violence and injustice, and maintain a modicum of peace and order. (more…)


War and evil

Russians attack UkraineThis post comes from Bill Muehlenberg’s commentary on current issues, “Culture Watch”.

With the Russian invasion of Ukraine, war is back in the news. Putin is an autocratic tyrant who loves power as much as any other dictator. He wants to invade and destroy an independent nation. Meanwhile, women and children are being cluster-bombed in their homes in Ukraine, and many thousands of Christians and others being rounded up in Russia as they plead for an end to this evil and madness. (more…)


Biblical geology

Channelized runoff from the Flood carved canyons & valleys - e.g. Spider Rock in Canyon de Chelly, Arizona. If these valleys formed over millions of years, this spire should not be there and there would be more tallus beneath the cliff.sThis post comes from a book by Oard and Carter (2021).

Biblical geology is much more sophisticated than skeptics both inside and outside of Christianity assert. Over 60 years of research, often published in technical journals as well as popular books and magazines, have produced an impressive body of evidence. Sloppy examination of creation science, and their biases, often cause secular scientists, old-earth creationists, and theistic evolutionists to grossly misrepresent the nature of the debate and the quality of evidence supporting the historic Christian view. (more…)


The Bible is for our time, but not about our time

The Bible was written for us, but not to usThis post comes from Michael Bird, a theologian who lives in Melbourne, Australia.

The Bible is for us. It is the principal source for how to believe and behave as disciples of Jesus Christ. The Bible exists for us to have a God-centered view of creation, to understand God’s providence in history, to hear God’s promises, to know God’s words of warning and encouragement, to have the words of Jesus, to hear the apostles’ testimony about Jesus, and to look ahead to the kingdom in all its future fullness. The private and public reading of the Bible is for us in the sense that it is for our training, our edification, our transformation, and our encouragement. The Bible is for us since the Bible enables God to speak to people across the tide of history, through our manifold cultures and languages, and in a way that truly transcends human differences. Whether you are a second-century Christian in Rome, a fifth-century Arab Christian in the city of Tikrit, or a twenty-first-century believer in Zimbabwe, the Bible is God’s word for you, for them, and for us today. The Bible is for us, yesterday, today, and until the end of the age. (more…)


Meet your maker

Meet your maker before you meet your makerThough we don’t live like it, death is a sure thing. I often take walks amongst the beautiful gardens and graves of the cemetery I live near. Thousands and thousands of headstones and memorial plaques lay quietly in various stages of abandon. Each represents another human who was once living and breathing like me. Right now death seems like something that happens to other people, but one day the sum of our lives will also be etched on a headstone for others to pass by. And then? (more…)


The Lord’s Supper – a visible sermon

 Toasts are generally offered at times of celebration, like wedding receptions or New Year’s EveA toast involves raising a glass and drinking in honor of or to the health (or goodwill) of a person or thing. It shows your appreciation of them or wishes them success. Toasts are generally offered at times of celebration, like wedding receptions or New Year’s Eve. A toast is a custom or habit that is part of our culture.

The Bible tells us that the Lord’s Supper is how we are to remember the death of Jesus Christ. The bread and wine symbolize the death of Christ. (more…)


Be encouraged, not discouraged

Protest to stop Russian aggression in UkraineWith war in Europe and floods in eastern Australia, there’s plenty to be discouraged about. But did you know that there is also plenty to be encouraged about?

In Thessalonica

The letter of 2 Thessalonians tells Christians how to face difficult times, in this case it was facing false teaching. The key verse is 2:15 which says, “stand firm and keep a strong grip on the teaching we passed on to you both in person and by letter” (NLT). That meant to follow the teaching given by the apostles, which is now in the New Testament. (more…)


Living for the Lord

The Israelies worshipped a golden calf An overview of Ephesians

In about 1445 BC during the exodus from Egypt, at Mount Sinai Aaron made a golden calf and the people said, “These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt” (Ex. 32:4, 8NIV). The calf may have been a pagan god or a symbol of strength. But the first commandment said, “You shall have no other gods before me” (Ex. 20:3). And the second said not to worship an idol. As they were disregarding or subtracting these commands from their Bible, about 3,000 people died. (more…)


Who are you trying to impress?

From Matthew 6:1-15

Don Bradman, 1948I spent my younger days on a farm near Forbes in central NSW, Australia. My mother had seven brothers who liked to play cricket. The eldest one played first grade cricket at St George Cricket Club with Don Bradman. When my mother and dad were young, they watched Don Bradman play at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). When I was young my dad took me to the SCG on a day when Neil Harvey scored 231 not out in his last Sheffield Shield game. I played cricket at Forbes and in the Protestant Churches Competition in Sydney. My 9-year-old grandson plays junior cricket for Lisarow-Ourimbah on the Central Coast. The club’s most famous player is Alan Davidson who died recently. On Saturday mornings I leave home at 6am to get him to the oval by 7:30am to be ready to play by 8am. (more…)


The command to keep the Lord’s Supper

Do this in remembrance of meThe best explanation of the Lord’s Supper is given in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34. It begins, “For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night He was betrayed, took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, ‘This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me’. In the same way, after supper He took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me’” (1 Cor. 11:23-25NIV). (more…)


Jesus is even better than Bluey’s dad

Jesus is even better than Bluey's dad“You’re as good as Bluey’s dad”. It is the highest compliment our young children can give my husband. I’ve given a similar compliment to one of our humorous friends and father of four. Bandit, more commonly known as Bluey’s Dad, is an animated Australian cattle dog daddy who has captured the hearts of children and parents the world over with his dry wit, playfulness and love for his two doggy daughters. The show has won an Emmy and Bandit has been declared a dad-idol by celebrities and dedicated fan groups. (more…)


Biblical evidence of the Trinity

Three angels that visited Abraham - Gen. 18:1-8 - Andrei Rublev 1411 or 1426I have been asked, “How do you know that there is a Christian trinity ? Where is the proof in the Bible?”

This post comes from CrossExamined.org

The doctrine of the Trinity has come under increasing attack over recent years from a variety of groups. Some of these groups (such as Muslims and Jehovah’s witnesses) deny that this doctrine is even found in Scripture. They are often quick to point out that the word “trinity” is to be found nowhere in the Bible. This is correct. While the phraseology is not found in Scripture, however, the concept most certainly is. (more…)


The Trinity is unique to Christianity

This post comes from Dr Tom Murphy who lives in Sydney, Australia.

What feature most differentiates Christianity from any other religion? What makes it special? Is it the crucifixion? The resurrection? The belief that Jesus was divine? Or something else?

What makes Christianity special? (more…)


Tyre reminds us that God keeps His promises

Roman ruins at Tyre in LebanonTyre was an island 800m (0.5 miles) off the coast north of Israel with two harbors, which was part of Phoenicia, an ancient civilization of the eastern Mediterranean, primarily located in modern Lebanon. It was noted for its wealth, pleasant environment and security (Ezek. 27:3-25; Hos. 9:13). Tyre was wealthy because it was a great trading center (Isa. 23:8; Ezek. 27:12-14; 28:4-5). In Semitic languages, the name of the city means “rock” after the rocky formation on which the city was originally built. (more…)


COVID anger

Anger can kill other emotions, like a very hot chilli can overpower all other flavors!

The changes, uncertainties and reductions in some of the freedoms we had taken for granted can lead to frustration, and sometimes even to anger.

This post comes from Philip Nunn who lives in The Netherlands.

How do you respond to the arrival of new COVID variants, rules and restrictions? How do you feel about the social and legal changes aggressively promoted by those with new ideas on sex, family and gender? Are you concerned? The issue that frustrates you may be more local, at your workplace, your church or in your family. (more…)


COVID fear

There is considerable fear and anxiety about COVID-19Yesterday there were 35,000 new cases of COVID-19 in New South Wales, Australia. And it was 38,600 today. The World Health Organization has warned of a “tsunami of cases” of COVID-19 (from Omicron and Delta variants) around the world.

This post comes from Tony Payne who lives in Sydney, Australia.

A lot of Christian pixels have been spilt over the past several weeks about vaccination, conscience, the weaker brother, civil obedience, the freedom to gather, the desirability of not excluding anyone, and more besides. (more…)


The Lord’s Supper is a memorial, not a transubstantiation

Christ the Redeemer monument, Rio de Janeiro, BrazilWe celebrate the Lord’s Supper as a memorial or a remembrance of what Christ did on the cross, but it can be different in some other churches.

According to the Roman Catholic Church, at the Lord’s Supper the bread and the wine mystically change into the actual body and blood of Christ. However, the outward characteristics of the bread and wine remain unaltered. This miracle (called transubstantiation) is believed to be brought about by the priest’s prayer. After this they believe that the bread and wine are holy and sacred. (more…)


You are welcome here

You are welcome hereIt was Christmas Day. I was in Kathmandu 10,000 kilometers from home. I knew no one. I didn’t understand the language everyone was speaking around me. The food, the gestures, the smells were all new and strange to me. Yet I clapped along to the songs, in which I understood only one word, with a sense of belonging. The word was Yesu – Jesus. Because of Jesus these strangers were also my brothers and sisters. They welcomed me. They shared their Christmas lunch with me. They invited me back to their homes with warm smiles and enthusiasm. (more…)