Accusations are necessary for justice, but false accusations are a miscarriage of it. It is increasingly easy to accuse in our modern American culture. The penalties are small, and the payoff often big. But false accusers must beware. In the fullness of time, they will pay for their lies. Meanwhile, those accused must forgive as they have been forgiven.
By Mark D, Harris
“Buy me another servant” the sultry wife told her wealthy, older husband. Within a few days, she noticed an unfamiliar young man carrying a large sack of topsoil in the garden. He tossed the sack to the ground as if it were filled with feathers. Over the weeks, she noticed that his tasks were always done quickly, imaginatively, and well, leaving time to help other servants with their responsibilities. Everyone liked and respected him, despite his youth. Her husband noticed too, and within months put him in charge of the other servants. Soon, the young man was the administrator of the whole household.
Continue reading “Accuse at Your Own Risk”
God exists. Or as a hard-bitten atheist might admit, at least something that transcends space and time. But how do we approach Him? Not through good works, fortune, fame, or power, but through Christ alone.
By Mark D, Harris
How can man approach God? People from the Aztecs to the Zulus have asked this since the dawn of humanity, and man has imagined thousands of answers. These answers boil down to three possibilities.
- Man cannot do anything to approach God, and therefore can never approach Him.
- Man does something, or a group of things, to earn the right to approach God.
- Man cannot do anything to approach God, but God in His grace brings man to Him.
These possibilities are exclusive, as each includes a world view that is inconsistent with the others. It is logically impossible to select 1 and 3, for example, or some other combination.
Continue reading “In Christ Alone”
The Holy Bible is the supreme authority in Christianity, as it reflects the person and power of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Most Christians take it far too lightly, and suffer confusion and powerlessness in life as a result.
By Mark D, Harris
The founder of the Hindu religion is unknown, but he bequeathed a political and cultural system entrenched in thousands of lives and dozens of cities to the residents in the Indian subcontinent. Moses granted his heirs a religio-legal system and a powerful nation on the brink of conquering its Promised Land. On his death, the Buddha left behind an oral tradition of teachings as well as a network of thousands of monks and lay followers, and many monasteries in northeastern India. Muhammad left a religion, a political system, and an empire for Muslims. Hindu, Jewish, Buddhist, and Muslim religious and political leaders ended their earthly lives with books, songs, people, cities, armies, land, money, and everything else befitting a mighty character in history.
Jesus Christ left behind little, at least by conventional historical standards. He wrote no book and sired no offspring. He controlled no lands, no cities, and no armies. He developed no political structure and did not establish a religious order. The Rabbi from Galilee did not even leave a building in His name. What did Jesus pass on to history? 120 followers (Acts 1:15), a little money, and His words and actions as recorded by others. With such a slim posterity, why is He the central figure in human history and the faith that He taught, Christianity, the largest religion on earth?
Continue reading “The Supremacy of Scriptures”
God transforms our hardest days, our “Good Fridays,” into the glorious victories of Easter. But He does so in His time and way, and we must trust Him.
By Mark D. Harris
“How was your day?” Nancy asked as I trudged in the door from work.
“Good,” I replied, with drawn face, slumped shoulders, and a shuffling gait.
Nancy frowned, “You look like it was awful.”
“No,” I said, “Every day above ground is a good day.”
“Mark, I am your wife. You need to tell me the truth – not just lies that you think that I want to hear.”
“Today was good, in the same way that Good Friday was good. Jesus died a horrific death, but God worked wondrous acts and eternal salvation from it,” I answered.
Nancy gave up the questions and followed me to the bedroom. I changed my clothes and laid on the bed where she gave me a back rub. Finally in a safe place with people who cared, the tension rolled out of my muscles. The gates to my heart, shut tight at work since I had to be, or at least appear to be, the perfect doctor and leader, cracked open. Soon Nancy brought love into my dark castle, and we began to heal.
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The world tells us that we are helpless against the insults of others. It insists that every hardship leaves a wound that will never heal. Our forebears thought differently, and better.
By Mark D. Harris
“Sticks and stones will break my bones but words can never hurt me.” I am old enough to remember a time when parents taught this pithy little rhyme to their children, and society at large believed it. We live in a new day, in which many Americans consider emotional injury as deadly, and more enduring, than physical injury. News accounts of emotional abuse, cyber bullying, and their mental health consequences such as depression, anxiety, and even suicide, pull at our heart strings. Girls, the lonely, and the young are at greater risk. Colleges, including those which my children attend, have safe spaces, trigger warnings, and strict rules against insensitivity and inflicting emotional trauma.
Continue reading “Sticks and Stones”