(December 2021 Newsletter)
Dear Friends – Thank you for budgeting the time to read along for another year. If you are a Christian believer, I hope that your investment of 10-15 minutes twelve times this past year has served to fortify your faith. If you are not a believer I hope that your thinking has been challenged. If you were to say to me, “Well, I’m willing to read about what you believe, but to believe is not to know,” I might respond: “Okay, suppose you ask me for the address of a mutual friend and I said, ‘Here’s the last address that I have on file for him. I’m not absolutely 100% certain that this address is still accurate, but I have not heard that he moved, so I believe it is.’ Would you say, ‘Then just forget it?’ No! We all use the term believe for things that we’re confident about, but perhaps can’t always 100% prove.”
We hear a lot today about how important it is to “follow the science.” Well, why not follow the evidence when deciding what’s true about life? Juries often decide cases on the basis of a preponderance of evidence. So when I say “I believe,” what I mean is that I’ve become rationally convinced that the Bible is reliable, that Jesus lives, and that Christianity is true. My faith is an intelligent Bible-based faith, not a blind faith. Let me encourage you to get off the fence. Consider the evidence. Stake a thoughtful faith claim. Invite Jesus to rescue you from sin and insecurity and let Him be real in your life.
The above paragraph was written by Daryl Witmer of Maine, who is a Christian apologist. When I read his newsletter I said to myself, “That’s exactly what I want to say!” so I asked him if I could reprint it. “No probem,” he said. In fact, he quotes other folks in his letter. He printed the quote below from Frank Turek, also a Christian apologist. (An Apologist is“a person who offers an argument in defense of something controversial.”)
“Jesus of Nazareth is arguably the most influencial human being to ever walk the earth. If you’re going to call yourself a pursuer of truth, you have to at least read what He allegedly said and did. He’s the center of human history, and you’re not going to look into Him?!”
“The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” Jeremiah 8:20
The children of Israel were in captivity in Babylon. “...and we are not saved (rescued).” Charles Spurgeon spiritulized this verse to remind us and warn us to take stock of our lives and get our house in order. The end of the year is a great time to take inventory and make plans. Here is part of what he said about the above verse (Jer. 8:20): “Not saved! Dear reader, is this your mournful plight? Warned of the judgment to come, bidden to escape for your life, and yet at this moment not saved? You know the way of salvation, you read it in the Bible, you hear it from the pulpit, and yet you neglect it, and therefore you are not saved. You will be without excuse…”
Spurgeon goes on to plead with us to make sure that we have made things right with God. In the words of the old hymn that I learned from Johnny Cash: “The old account was settled long ago.”
May your accounts be settled! MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!