Monday, April 14, 2008

Pronounciation of Difficult Biblical Names

Have you every felt embarrassed having to read a passage of Scripture publicly when there are names which you have never heard pronounced and you, or no one you know, has any idea what the official pronunciation should be? Names can be troublesome, particularly when they represent transliterations from Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek with no equivalents in the English language.

The following link provides the reader with the capability of choosing a difficult name in the Bible (from an alphabetically arranged list) and with a click, hearing the name pronounced by a trained professional. A great tool which is free and capable of saving the oral reader from much fright and embarrassment:

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Internet Evangelism Day

I have heard and read about people/churches/groups using the internet as their springboard for evangelism for several years now, but always in the context of winning people to Christ from other religions. However, I am very interested to read more recently of a much broader movement to reach otherwise unreachable people with the message of the gospel... people who would never darken the doors of a church on their own but who spend a lot of time surfing the web.

I find this an exciting prospect and am eager to learn more about this newest evangelistic tool, especially since we hear so much about the bad side of the internet. I agree that the internet has had some really bad influence on our generation. And I have felt the usual frustration of many over the terrible ways in which this technology is being used for evil purposes. BUT I find it very exciting to read of a way in which we believers can "beat the devil at his own game" so to speak!

April 27 is INTERNET EVANGELISM DAY. Check out the idea... There is no doubt someone in just about every congregation who would love the challenge of sharing their faith via the Internet... a new way of service and evangelism, the lack of both of which many churches are suffering. why not challenge those Internet-savvy believers in your congregation with a new form of evangelism and put that Internet to good use!

Monday, March 17, 2008

What happens to infants when they die?

The eternal destiny of those who die in infancy remains a difficult question to answer, though it continually and unavoidably arises in pastoral sitautions. Two books which give very helfpul biblical and theological insight on this issue are (1) R. A. Webb, The Theology of Infant Salvation (1874; reprint, Harrisonburg, Virginia: Sprinkle Publicaitons, 1981) and (2) John MacArthur, Safe in the Arms of God: Truth from Heaven About the Death of a Child (Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, 2003).

Monday, March 3, 2008

Church attendance and avoidance

I was very interested to read a recent Barna report that listed the latest statistics on church participation at

Of most interest to me personally was the categories of attendees/non-attendees that Barna calls the Unattached: people who had attended neither a conventional church nor a house church or some other kind of "organic faith community" in the past year. The statistics say that 1 out of every four adults is "unattached" and one-third of them have never attended any kind of church at all any time in their lifetime.

Particularly telling to me were some of the characteristics of the Unattached. They are:
*more likely to feel stressed out
*less likely to be concerned about the moral condition of the nation
*less optimistic about the future.

There are several more characteristics, but this is enough to remind me of the challenge we have to reach our world with the good news of salvation and hope. We certainly do have our work cut out for us.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Valuable documents

Tax time is right around the corner and thinking of that reminds me of an article I recently read about the things a church treasurer should have on hand. It might be helpful to look through this list for your own church and make sure you and the church board know where each item is located:

Among the ten items listed in this article was one item that struck a cord with me as a layperson who has spent quite a number of hours assisting in a local church office: a list of members.

It reminded me of the day I was looking for the book that listed all the charter members of the church for use in a church history someone was attempting to write. I could not find the book although I knew it existed because I had been the one to enter the names originally.

After searching unsuccessfully for some time, I mentioned my quest to the pastor, who responded, " Oh, that book. I threw it away when I was cleaning out the office one day. I figured it was not of any value to us now."

Needless to say, the lesson here is DON'T TOSS ITEMS OF HISTORICAL VALUE!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

An Encouragement for Christian Living

The book entitled The Life of God in the Soul of Man, by Henry Scougal, was first published in 1677 but has been reprinted by Sprinkle Publicaitons (Harrisonburgh, Virginia) in 1986 through 2005. It is a sober, challenging, and very enlightening work on the life of the Christian, with both encouragements and exhortations for the pursuit of the true fear of God. The author speaks with brevity, clarity, simplicity, and power.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Free Wesleyan periodicals available online


There are three full-text Wesleyan Peroidicals available on line:

Pilgrim Holiness Advocate
Pentecost Herald
The True Wesleyan.

They are from the Archives and Historical Libary of the Wesleyan Church. Some of the articles available have great historical interest, being from 1843 up through the early 1900s.