Friday, April 14, 2006

Check out this wonderfully useful message on evangelism in Japan!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

All-Star for God

St. Louis Cardinals 1999 All-Star pitcher Kent Bottenfield recently came to our church and school in Japan! I thought that he was simply coming to help out and minister to our baseball team (which he did for a whole week), but then I was surprised to hear that he is also a professional Christian singer - and a VERY talented one at that. It was a true joy to be able to personally talk with him after his "mini-concert" at our church. He took the time to talk with me personally for 15-20 minutes after the service and more later too. He reminded me so much of my brother Gary, so I told Kent that I miss my brother Gary so much being here as a missionary. He told me that he would send a CD and an autograph picture to my brother Gary, who was also a good pitcher (not All-Star level though!) and collects autographs. He ended up giving me a free CD too! Please listen to this very kind, very humble and very talented man of God on his website - Enjoy!

May God use each of our talents, big and small to show His love to others for His glory.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Freedom is of God

For about a year-and-a-half now I have been leading our college Christian group
in Bible study. It has been great to see them grow closer to God and each other.
Since many do not come from Christian homes and none come from any type
of Christian culture, it is understandably at times a real battle to get them to think
and live Biblically. We, including Americans, are often tempted to think that non-
Christians are have more freedom than Christians. This has motivated me to think
about what people need in order to find true freedom in life.

Have you ever watched the movie "King Arthur"? I don't recommend it! It basically
exalts the freedom of man and makes God look like a slave driver. What a wicked
concept. This is opposite of what is true, is it not? Through God we are given
freedom to escape the slavery of sin that keeps us from true life. (Rom.6)

Sometimes we as sinful people think that we can actually do better without God.
This kind of thinking ALWAYS leads us to sin and pain. Why? Because wrapped
up in the very definition of sin is doing anything without faith in God. (Rom. 14:23)

For those of you who have time please listen to the message below. Unlike
the heretical Pelagian view that led to the dark ages of the church, Augustine
was a man who was filled with the belief that true freedom can only be given
by God. "By grace you have been saved, through faith and this is not of your
own doing; it is a gift of God, not as a result of works, so that no one may boast."
(Eph. 2:8-9)

Had Augustine's theology prevailed over Pelagius there wouldn't have been a
need for the Reformation. Sadly, in the name of Christian freedom, we are again
submitting ourselves to our own idea of humanistic freedom. May we not again
be bound by ourselves. Let us be free and God-centered! The two cannot be

Click here to listen: