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Copyright © 2002
M. S. Thirumalai
Christian Literature & Living is a monthly online journal devoted to the worship of the Lord Jesus Christ through literature, and through living according to His Word. We wish to introduce our readers to the best Christian literature, Christian devotionals, counseling, and to the understanding of the relevance of the Word of God in our daily life, in popular language. Christian Literature & Living is a cross-cultural journal, focusing on Christian literature written in all the languages, and Christian living around the world. We learn by listening to and reading our brothers and sisters in Christ from all around the world. We believe that any creative writing with literary sensibilities that focuses on the presence and life-changing ministry of Jesus Christ is Christian literature. We believe that we all need the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ in order to live a life according to His Word. Christian literature and other writings anointed by the Holy Spirit help us to develop a personal relationship with Jesus as the Lord and Savior.
- JUST WAR, UNJUST WAR,
AND JUSTICE DURING WAR by Randall Smith, Ph.D..
I fear sometimes that pacifists oppose the just-war criteria not only because they consider it an "intellectual cover" for war, but also because they sub-consciously perhaps hope to create a self-fulfilling prophecy: war is so terrible, no one could ever engage in it. When war becomes less terrible and more humane, it seems somehow more acceptable. No, let's not fool ourselves with statements like "surgical strikes" and "precision-guided ordinance"; war just is a horrendous travesty against human-kind. It seems then that, to allow that the war is being waged with admirable - indeed even heroic - restraint, is to support further war. So it is often a strange thing about American political life that two opposing groups both oppose the just-war criteria: the supporters of "total war" on the far right, and the pacifists on the far left. Both sides, for their own reasons, find the "restrictions" unrealistic and absurd.
- JESUS AND UNBELIEF - John 2-12 by James Skeen.
The same sunshine, water, and soil that produce good plants also produce weeds, tares, and thistles. To put it in John's language, the same signs that are meant to provoke and strengthen faith strengthen unbelief. The wrong beliefs that have served to bolster rebellious unbelief become more deep-seated. For example, Pharisaic unbelief moved from religious and economic exploitation, legalistic Sabbathism, and hyper-criticalism to bearing false witness and murder. Why? So that they could maintain their power and status within Israel. Unbelief becomes hardened when truth is rejected (v. 40)!
- TEN COMMANDMENTS
FOR HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS by Chris Kaczor, Ph.D..
Far from undermining human freedom, these commandments support and indeed enable us to be free. What is freedom, after all, fundamentally for? Is it not for the sake of happiness, a deep, lasting, satisfying happiness? Insofar as this happiness cannot be had without a loving relationship with God, and insofar as a loving relationship with God is impossible without treating God as God (Commandments 1-3) and the image of God as the image of God (Commandments 4-10), the commandments help us attain that which we desire. Just as a soccer coach or violin teacher will give injunctions to help the players or the musicians achieve their goals, so too the commandments of God are not arbitrary hoops to jump through on the way to heavenly bill but are rather intimately connected without attaining this end. Health care professionals, like every conscious human being want this pure Life, pure Love, and pure Light. These commandments then help them and us achieve what we really want.
- THE NATURAL LAW IS WHAT WE NATURALLY KNOW
A Conversation with Professor J. Budziszewski.
"I wish you had not put it that way! Too many people think that acknowledging the claims of reason means denying the claims of revelation. I do not see it that way at all. Think of the matter like this: God has made some things known to all human beings; these are general revelation. He has also made additional things known to the community of faith; these are special revelation. Natural law is about general revelation, not special revelation. However, a Christian natural-law thinker will make use of special revelation to illuminate general revelation - and will use God-given reasoning powers to understand them both."
- ELIJAH AND ELISHA - GOD'S PROPHETS by Pastor Dave Strem and James W. Skeen
What did Elisha ask for? He asked for a double portion of God's spirit. As a child, how many of us knew all about Elijah but little about Elisha? Elijah was the well-known and fiery prophet who called fire down from heaven. Elisha was second in command, the servant, the assistant. He was not a showy character. But when you look at Elisha closely you see something fascinating. ... In the whole Bible there are 3-4 chapters that talk about Elijah's life. But there are 6-8 chapters that talk about Elisha's life. When you count the miracles of Elijah, you find 10-12 depending on whether you talk about the starting and stopping of rain as one or two miracles. How many do you think you find when you study the story of Elisha?
- WHAT IS THE CHURCH?
AND WHAT IS MY CHURCH? by Pastor John Meacham.
The church is here to help us conform our lives to God's will and not to seek God-like some genie in a bottle who grants all our wishes and dreams. Jesus made this clear to me when He embodied me and sang at Amity Presbyterian Church. The song was "Eternal God, Whose Power Upholds" by Henry Hallam Tweedy. I share this today, because I feel that the words of this song are a message from Jesus Christ to the church. ...Is my church a way to seek health, wealth and happiness for its members? Or is my church serving God's Kingdom, as Jesus Christ come down to earth to glorify the Father and save His children?
- THE LAW IN GENESIS by Mike Leeming.
Was there a law before the time of Moses? There was some form of law
that would have been known and understood before the time of Moses both
within the community of worshippers of Yahweh -- as the lives of such
people as Enoch, Noah, Abraham and Job attest -- and also outside of that
community of the worshippers of Yahweh-as we see in the code of Hammurabi.
We also see in the biblical record of Genesis, that people often did
not obey the Law of God, and suffered dire consequences for their disobedience.
The Fall, the Flood, the confusion of languages at the Tower of Babel,
and the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah are all episodes of God's judgment
for violation of His Law.
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