Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Bridge...awesome!

You have to watch this video. Be prepared to cry.
Look at the faces of those who were saved....and they knew nothing of the sacrifice that bought their safety.
Amazing and heart warming: http://www.maximumreferrals.com/videos/bridge/bridge.htm

Monday, October 27, 2008

Read this before voting for Mr. Obama

OK, this election really seems to be whipping up the emotions, doesn't it?
For many Christians, the issues surrounding the fundamental right to life is paramount. Yet I hear of Christians who are willing to cast a vote for Obama and I am puzzled. How can we compromise on this issue and sacrifice the innocent in the womb? It is clear that God knows us and loves us even before birth. When we turn our eyes away from the slaughter of innocents and cast a vote for a pro-abortion candidate, we are cheapening life for all of us.
For this reason, I urge anyone contemplating a vote for Mr. Obama to read this short article before entering the voting booth. All I can say in response is, "amen."


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Choosing death over life

A drowning sailor claws at the surface of the water, gasping, fearful, crying out for help. A life line is deployed and is within easy reach, but the sailor turns away, preferring to fight on his own. Exhausted, he slips into the hungry darkness of the ocean.
Starving, a man is escorted to a banquet table laden with food. With life-saving nutrition within easy reach, he willfully and apparently happily, wastes away, dying with a concentration-camp physique, skin a translucent covering over sharp bone.
A woman parched with thirst, faints in the desert heat rather than sip from the cool water in her hand.
A prisoner on death row chooses to stay in solitary confinement, turning down a President’s pardon.
A cancer victim turns away from a guaranteed cure.
Survivors (and I am in their midst) stand on the sidelines, aghast at the deathly choices of the masses.

Imagine an offer so amazing that to walk away would be damnable. Inexcusably crazy.
But this is what is happening every day. Every second.
Our generation chooses to die. Yes, they freely choose death over life. Hell over heaven. Pain over everlasting joy.
To me, this is nearly unbelievable, and it points to huge problems facing today’s church.
My search for an adequate simile pales in light of reality. Is the perception of Christ and his church, rather than the reality of Christ, responsible for this understated tragedy?

As a church, we hold a treasure of inestimable worth. We serve an indescribably powerful God who launched a loving rescue plan.
Yet the world looks on in revulsion. I’ll never join the ranks of those hypocrites. If that’s what being a Christian means, count me out! They scoff at our offer, joking their way into eternity. I’d rather be in hell with my friends…
The drowning sailor prefers to fight on his own. The starving and thirsty turn away from food and water. The prisoner willfully chooses to stay in his cell, wearing sunglasses of damnable delusion. Freedom is here, he thinks, within these walls.


I've got my theories, but I want to hear yours. I spent several hours in a mall asking non-christians why they were not Christians. The answers may surprise you. But what do you think? Why aren't unbelievers flocking to our doors because of the good news?

Comment below or e-mail me from my contact page.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Check this out!

Just wanted to let my readers know about an interview that has appeared on Crossway Books' blog site. It's all about my newest non-fiction book, "The Cure." Check out this address: http://www.crossway.org/blog/2008/10/interview-with-author-and-surgeon-dr-harry-kraus/

Happy surfing!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Christian writers: What is our calling?

I was listening to a Christian teacher a few weeks ago. "Why did Jesus come?"

Many answers were given. "To save us." "To seek and save the lost." "To free those in bondage to sin."

All of these answers and more were rejected. They were good answers, to be sure, but not exactly what the teacher was getting at. The specific answer is found in Jesus comment to Pilate recorded in John 18:37:

"...For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world--to bear witness to the truth..."

Honestly, that wasn't the first thing that popped into my head as I attempted to answer the question. But as I considered it, and thought about the truth that Jesus came to testify about, I understood. And I considered that our calling as Christian writers can be distilled down to this important element: a testimony to the truth.

Jesus is inseparably linked to the word and to the truth. We understand from John 1 that Jesus is one with his message. He is called "the word." He is God. He is the message. He is the truth. (Remember, "I am the way, the truth, and the life...").

Not a truth. The truth.

In our post-modern culture, truth is under attack. Absolutes have given way to relativism. What is true for me may not be true for you. Is not this the beginning of a downward slide into an anything-goes lawlessness?

I was privileged to attend the Desiring God national convention this past week in Minneapolis. The theme was the Power of Words and the Wonder of God. It was an awesome time to soak up great teaching from John Piper, Mark Driscoll, Sinclair Ferguson, Bob Kauflin, and Paul Tripp. I was particularly interested in the way Mark Driscoll (teaching pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle) broke down the ministry calling of today's communicators:
1. Feed the sheep (the Christians).
2. Rebuke the swine (Christians who are not following the narrow path).
3. Shoot the wolves (he noted that pastors who stumble into the philosophy of loving everyone, not creating controversy will end up loving even the wolves and that the wolves will take over their congregations).
4. Bark at the dogs (these are the "religious" people who are legalists, threatening the gospel by their false teaching. Mark is busy calling sinners to repent of their sin and the religious people of our day to repent of their religions.
5. Pray for the shepherds. This is critical so they can distinguish the sheep from the swine/wolves/dogs.

I believe our calling as Christian writers is a clear presentation of truth (Jesus). No, I don't mean that each novel has to be laced with the four spiritual laws or the Roman's road to salvation or even have a conversion within the covers. But in some way, there have to be distinctions that set our writings apart. A spiritual message cannot be tacked on. It has to be woven into the story in such a fashion that to remove it will cause the whole theme to unravel. The truths that we present may come as an encouragement to the sheep.

Or they may come as a rebuke to the swine. Or as a sniper to the wolves.

When we present the truth, we are giving our readers a glimpse into some aspect of God. Faced with an image of God, three things happen. I've adapted this from a presentation called "The Truth Project" a seminar sponsored by Focus on the Family. Read Isaiah 6:1-8 When Isaiah saw the Lord, there were three results (and can we not predict that a presentation of truth would have a similar response along these three lines?): 1. He was exposed ("I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips.") 2. Our culture is exposed ("I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips...") and 3. We become world changers ("Here am I, send me.").

Christian writers, what is our calling? To testify to the truth!