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Archive for the ‘church’ Category

Bloodshed in Blacksburg: A Sign of the Times

Posted by thelamp on May 4, 2007

Horror and disbelief bewildered the nation Monday when a gunman unleashed his rage upon innocent students and faculty at Virginia Tech, turning the picturesque campus into the scene of the deadliest school shooting in American history.

Initial details as to what precipitated the massacre were sketchy and continue to unfold, but this much is known: when the rampage was over, 33 lives had come to an abrupt end. As the ripple effect of the tragedy spreads sorrow and anguish far beyond Blacksburg, a disquieting aura of deja vu hangs over the nation.

A Tech student being interviewed by a TV news reporter referred to the incident as “the college Columbine.” It’s tragically sad for America that this week’s violent outburst isn’t the first; it’s just the most recent, and for now – the most deadly.

In the eight years that have passed since Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 15 people and wounded another 23 at Columbine High School in Colorado, there have been at least 22 similar slayings on school grounds in 16 states. Prior to Monday, the death toll stood at 35, with 31 people among the wounded.

“It’s all too common that by the time young people reach the tender age of 16, they’ve already killed thousands of people or creatures ‘virtually’ with realistic splatter and gore. Keep in mind that studies in neuroscience have shown that the human brain treats vividly imagined events and real ones almost identically,” said Pastor Parsley. “Thus, when the time comes to level a real gun at a real schoolmate, any tendency toward remorse or conscience will have been eliminated. They will already have ‘been there’ many times before.”

America is in desperate need of prayer. Bible-believing Christians know that there is a way to restore the sacred value human life holds.

“If my people, which are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14.

People of faith hold the key to transforming classrooms and other public places into the peaceful places they once were. At this pivotal moment in history, God’s children must step forward and become agents of change. If Christians fail to extend His love and compassion, anger and violence will decimate the nation.



Posted in Anti-Christian attitudes, Center for Moral Clarity, christians, church, CMC, crime, guns, moral, moral values, murder, prayer, Recent News & Events, Rod Parsley, Virginia Tech | Leave a Comment »

United in Prayer

Posted by thelamp on May 4, 2007

Americans are an eclectic lot. Although rich diversity is among the nation’s tremendous assets, it also contributes to factions that unnecessarily alienate and divide the citizenry. The National Day of Prayer is an ideal opportunity to set those differences aside and come together with a collective, unified voice.

The 56th Annual National Day of Prayer took place Thursday, May 3. The theme for this year, “America, Unite in Prayer,” was based on 2 Chronicles 7:14, which states: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

“A prayerful spirit has always been an important part of our national character, and it is a force that has guided the American people, given us strength, and sustained us in moments of joy and in times of challenge,” President George W. Bush said in the this year’s proclamation from the White House. “On this National Day of Prayer, we acknowledge God’s grace and ask for His continued guidance in the life of our nation.”

Although the National Day of Prayer was established in 1952, when President Harry Truman signed it into law, the first request for such a day pre-dates the nation itself. In 1775, the Continental Congress asked the colonies to pray for wisdom in forming a nation. Roughly a century later, in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln, too, called for a day of “humiliation, fasting, and prayer.” In 1988, the law was amended and signed by President Reagan, permanently setting the day as the first Thursday of every May.

The National Day of Prayer has great significance for the United States as a nation. It enables contemporary generations to recall and to teach the way in which America’s founding fathers sought the wisdom of God when faced with critical decisions. National Day of Prayer stands as a call for everyone – across all walks of life – to humbly come before God, seeking His guidance for the leaders and His grace upon the citizens as a people.

Furthermore, the unanimous passage of the bill establishing the National Day of Prayer as an annual event signifies that prayer is as important to our nation today as it was in the beginning. This year’s “Prayer for Our Nation” was written by Dr. Charles R. Swindoll.

2007 Prayer for Our Nation

Almighty God, we pause to reflect on Your character as we seek wisdom for such a time as this.

In these unsafe days,
You remain all-powerful and able to protect;

In these uncertain times,
You remain all-knowing, leading us aright;

In the unprecedented events we’re facing,
You remain absolutely sovereign.
Our times are in Your hands.

Therefore, our dependence on You, is total, not partial
. . . our need for Your forgiveness is constant
. . . our gratitude for Your grace is profound
. . . our love for You is deep.

We ask that You guard and guide our President
and all who serve the people of these United States.
May uncompromising integrity mark their lives.

We also ask that You unite us as truly “one nation,
under God.” May genuine humility return to our ranks.

And may that blend of integrity and humility
heal our land.

In our Lord’s name we pray,



Posted in Center for Moral Clarity, Christianity, christians, church, CMC, day of prayer, prayer, Recent News & Events, Rod Parsley | Leave a Comment »

More Church Regulation Considered

Posted by thelamp on April 11, 2007

How much should local governments regulate social service activities conducted by churches? Some municipalities are talking about implementing rules to restrict distribution of food by charitable groups, including churches.

According to a recent article in USA Today (Cities set limits on serving food to homeless people), officials in Orlando, Dallas, Las Vegas, and Wilmington, N.C., began enforcing such ordinances last year.

City government has a legitimate responsibility to set standards that ensure safe food handling practices. No one would want a homeless family’s situation to worsen because of illness contracted from eating a contaminated meal. However, requiring volunteers to take a food-handling course – or face a $2,000 fine – may have unintended consequences, such as a dramatic drop in the number for people willing to give their time to help their less fortunate neighbors.

The restrictions under consideration also include limiting where food give-away distribution events can be held, and in some jurisdictions, a permit may be required.

Homelessness isn’t a crime, so those who are enduring hard times shouldn’t be treated like criminals. Public display of compassion ought to be a characteristic that cities promote and publicize rather than shamefully secreted on a quiet street.


Posted in Anti-Christian attitudes, Center for Moral Clarity, Christianity, christians, church, CMC, crime, food handling, Food/Health Related, Freedom of Religion, homeless, Mission / Evangelism, Recent News & Events, Religion, Religion/Politics, Rod Parsley | Leave a Comment »

What does God have to say?

Posted by thelamp on April 8, 2007

I was at a local dealership getting my vehicle repaired.  While talking to the Service manager, I noticed a quote on his desk from Joel Osteen.  I was very disheartened by what I read as it is totally unBiblical (I am willing to debate this issue).  The quote on his desk calendar stated, “It’s God’s will for you to live in prosperity instead of poverty.  God wants us to prosper financially, to have plenty of money, to fulfill the destiny He has laid out for us.”  I knew this was wrong…but I only kept it in the back of my mind, until I read something that–made me feel guilty for my many blessings (although I don’t have a lot)–and bothered me with what our buddy Joel said.  The following is quoted under permission of Voice of the Martyrs.  Just when you think you’re hot stuff in God’s eyes, just remember who He is really moving through.  It may be a bit long…but more worthwhile to read than the stuff you may hear tomorrow at your church.

“‘Salavat’, a pastor in the predominantly Muslim nation of Uzbekistan, has been detained and interrogated by police so many times he has lost track of the number.  He has been beaten and threatened with long prison terms.  When our VOM workers met with him, he had just been released from a six-month imprisonment.

‘While I was in prison, the eight other prisoners in my cell were ordered to beat me.  I thought they would kill me, but the Lord protected me.  They didn’t even touch me.’

While Salavat spent those six months in prison, there was no caring for his wife “Inez” and for their five children.  The Christians were too frightened to assit the family for fear they also would be arrested.  They were too frightened to get word to VOM or others in the outside world who would have been willing and able to help.  So, Salavat’s family barely subsisted, often going without.

When Salavat returned home, the situation was not much better.  None of the believers would come to Salavat’s church.  They were too afraid.  Salavat was discouraged, but preached anyway.  For two days Salavat praised the Lord in his empty church.  He says he remembered the verse in Hebrews 10:34, ‘for you had compassion on me in my chains, and joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in heaven.”  Salavat decided if his enemies wanted to take everything from him, he would joyfully accept their plundering. 

The imprisonment, the plundering of his goods, the abandonment by other believers–these he could accept.  However, the hardest to accept was his family’s suffering.  There was very little food and no help in sight.  The day finally came when there was no food left in the house.

“Dad, when will we have something to eat?” asked his oldest daughter, 7-year old ‘Rachel’.  Salavat did not have an answer.  Instead, he replied, “Let’s wait until morning.  We’ll have breakfast then.”

The next morning Salavat woke at his usual 5 a.m. time for his daily meeting with the Lord.  Rachel rose also, asking again, “When will we eat?  I’m hungry.”

Salavat prayed fervently that God would provide for his family, and after prayer told her, “Well have something to eat in a bit.  Let’s go out and work in the garden while we wait.”

They began to work, and heard a car approaching.  Two young men approached them and asked for Salavat by name.
“We were not supposed to be here today, but the Lord has sent us,” one of them said and handed Salavat an envelope.  Salavat looked inside and found the equivalent of $200–more than a month’s wages.  The two men turned to go, leaving Salavat in shock, looking at the envelope.  When he heard the car leaving, he and his daighter ran after the men to thank them.
Salavat reached the street, but there was no car.  There was no cloud of dust nor fading engine sound.  The sandy, narrow road revealed no tracks.  It was as if a car had not driven by for weeks. 

Rachel looked at her father, then at the envelope still in his hands.  “Dad,” she said fervently, “from now on your God will be my God.”

Posted in blessing, church, God, joel osteen, money, poverty, provision, Religion, VOM, wealth | Leave a Comment »