religion, christianity, articles
Abilene Christian University, David Lipscomb University, Pepperdine University, Harding University, religion, Bible, Christianity, church, God, Christ, Holy Spirit, Holy Ghost, faith, salvation, baptism, Christian, Church of Christ, Baptist, Catholic, Non-denominational, Methodist, Pentecostal, Presbyterian, inspiration, agnostism, divorce, Calvinism, premillennialism, evolution, creation, morals, feminism, Southside Church of Christ, St. Pius X Catholic Church, Abilene Christian University, New International Version,
The Assault of Parenthood, book review, Uniform Bible Lessons,  Gospel Advocate, Heritage of Faith, Scripture Press, David Cook, Twenty-First Century Christian,
Emory University, mores, Princeton University, American Enterprise Institute, Slouching Towards Gomorrah, The Peaceable Kingdom, Lesbian

Potpourri, September 1997

religion, articles, christianity
WSJ C. Bare Again Quote
Opportunity Bible Study Pop Psychology
Puzzling Food for Though Transition
Jewel in the Crown More on Mores Funny
Good Whad-Ja-Say? Finally

Our many friends - God bless them everyone - continue to send accolades. Here is a sampling of some words of encouragement. "Please cancel - I do not want to renew ... keep up the good work ... I enjoy reading the Firm Foundation from cover to cover ... I have been fighting glaucoma and errors in the brotherhood, and I need the Firm Foundation ... I cannot read very good because of advanced age, please change my subscription to my son ... you people will never know how many church members are so appreciative of the good work you are doing but never get around to telling you ... I appreciate your stand for the truth ... I am very sorry I let my subscription run out on Firm Foundation, which I love to read very much. I want to renew today ... Glad some godly men are keeping us up-to-date on the happenings in congregations across the land ... I want to tell you how much the Firm Foundation magazine study guide has helped me ... Thank you so much for clinging so tenaciously to the truth. Please continue to denounce error ... we are strong supporters of your efforts to fight liberalism in the church. Keep up the good work."

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Charles Bare of Houston sent a clipping from the Wall Street Journal, which says, "Violence is not funny. Violence has been sensationalized and glorified in movies, television, radio, and the print media.

Violence is not entertainment. Violence is excessive proliferation of guns and illegal drugs. Violence is profit driven. Violence is greed. Violence feeds off low self-esteem. Violence can evolve from repetitive, indecent, and crude racial, sexual, and religious distortions that can shape hateful attitudes about one another ... I am asking you the public to not support, with your dollars, any media or other entities which honor needless violence."

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The Southside Church of Christ in Lubbock, Texas is making available one of its preachers, Gordon Brewer, without charge to any church that would like to use him in Gospel Meetings, Interim Preaching, or for any of the following workshops or Seminars:

  • Journeying With Those Who Grieve
  • Growing a Local Congregation
  • Making Worship Meaningful
  • Holding Successful Home Bible Studies
  • Understanding Angels
  • The Godhead: Roles and Functions
  • Before the I Do: Roles of Husband and Wife

Brother Brewer brings over 40 years of experience to this work. Paying his expenses would be the only cost for the sponsoring congregation. His phone number is (806) 745-4496. Personal references include Tommy Hicks (806) 798-1019, and Buster Dobbs (281) 469-3102.

The Firm Foundation knows brother Brewer well and is pleased to recommend him. He loves and knows the truth of the gospel. Give him a call.

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Judge Mike Schwille of Dallas is dead. According to the obituary in the Dallas Morning News, Judge Schwille was a member of St. Pius X Catholic Church, but was an assistant professor at Abilene Christian University at Dallas from 1970-1974.

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Jewel in the Crown

Mignon Doran, wife of Adron, was honored when the Commonwealth of Kentucky made this proclamation:

To all to Whom These Presents Shall Come; Greeting.

Know ye that Mignon Doran is recognized and honored for an exceptional life filled with achievements that resonate throughout the Commonwealth in the lives of those who have walked with her. As it can be said that the significant accomplishment of those who make a difference are found in the hearts of others, it is personified in the life of Mignon Doran ... on the motion of Senator Walter Blevins, Jr., hereby celebrate the generosity, commitment and humanity of said recipient.

The Firm Foundation extends its congratulations, Mignon.

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Zondervan has announced it will abandon its attempt to print a gender neutral edition of the NIV. This is a step forward.

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C. Bare Again

Brother Charles has faxed two recent items printed in the Wall Street Journal for our information and edification. The first is a review of a book, Faith or Fear, by Elliott Abrams, in which it is said that intermarriage for the Jew is a mixed curse. The cost is a loss of Jewish identify - and, more important, of Judaism itself. Mr. Abrams shows how most American Jews are the least religious group in America, and their non-Orthodox institutions have equated Jewish security with removing religion from American public life (Wall Street Journal, May 27, 1997).

Elliott Abrams is quoted in National Review (May 19,1997) as having said, "When American Jews abandon religion in favor of culture they disappear."

I reckon the same is true of the church one reads about in the New Testament. When professing Christians abandon pure an undefiled religion in favor of culture they are absorbed by society and cease to be lights in the world and the salt of the earth.

In a second communiqué, brother Bare sends another book review from the Wall Street Journal. This one is about the book, The Assault of Parenthood, by Dana Mack. Ms. Mack found that 700,000 families a year are falsely reported to the authorities for child abuse. She also says that increased cost of education in America is producing "education lite" or worse. Teaching the three "R's," she says, "takes a back seat to involving kids in life skills, rap sessions, support groups and other activities encouraging them to correct the narrow views they picked up from their parents at home." One Massachusetts teacher is quoted as saying that traditional arithmetic is unfair because it imposes a "right and a wrong" answer, which in turn foists a "white, Western" ethos on an increasingly multi-cultural student population. Ms. Mack nicely shows how the prevailing interpretation of the First Amendment enters in: "If it is the state that should raise children, upholders of this doctrine are determined that it be a secularist state that vacuums the public square clean of any reference to religion" (Wall Street Journal, May 8, 1997).

Thank you, Charles Bare.

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Bible Study

Insight magazine (June 30, 1997) in an article by Larry Witham says the Protestant Sunday-school movement is united by the Uniform Bible Lessons. These lessons are produced by the most radical liberals in the land, and profoundly influence most religious publishing houses, including David Cook and Standard. The Gospel Advocate Bible School series, Heritage of Faith, comes from Scripture Press, which has been swallowed up by David Cook. Standard is the source of the Twenty-First Century Christian (formerly, Twentieth Century Christian) material.

The article claims there is a hunger for solid Bible study in the nation. Some have started a Saturday Bible School, which demands 40 minutes of Bible reading every day and a two-and-a-half hour meeting each Saturday. One leader of this movement said, "We didn't realize the hunger that contemporary people have for Scriptures."

A word to the wise: Maybe you ought to try a Saturday Bible study school that emphasizes a study of the Word of God.

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Food for Though

World magazine (May 31) says, "Postmodernism favors form over content, images over truth, desire over reality. This is why contemporary educational theory is not much interested in teaching anything and why today's politicians can be so free and easy with the truth."

How very true, and we might add that religious leaders, some of them in institutions of higher learning, are likewise not as much interested in truth as they are in effect.

Another morsel for your mind is that "ninety-four percent of sex on TV is among people who aren't married to each other," reports researcher Marion Howard of Emory University. This contributes to children's widespread confusion about marriage. Everything they see on TV says, "Sex isn't only for marriage" (World, June 7, 1997).

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More on Mores

Lisa Schiffren wrote, "I did not abstain from premarital sex. I was raised in a secular, Upper East Side Manhattan liberal home and now I'm a quasi-religious conservative. I wish I could say that premarital sex was morally wrong. Sometimes I think its OK. It's very hard to send young women to college and tell them they are going to be investment bankers and lawyers, and yet they can't have sex. Plus, we don't want people to get married too, too early. More often than not, though, premarital sex is a bad idea" (U.S News & World Report, May 19, 1997).

Jennifer Grossman said, "I used to complain to my mother, who is a liberal, about how boyfriends seemed commitment shy. And she would say, 'Well, why buy the cow if milk is free?'" She went on to explain how moral she now is: "I didn't kiss the man I'm dating now until the seventh date. I didn't have sex with him until the seventh month. He respects and values me a lot more than the men I dated in college, when I was a lot more casual with my body" (U.S. News & World Report, May 19, 1997).

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A judge has thrown out Clifford Goldberg's $7 million lawsuit. Goldberg claimed that he lost his hearing after attending a particularly loud Motley Crue concert. The judge said Goldberg assumed the risk when he attended what he knew would be a raucous concert. Besides, anyone who thinks Motley Crue makes good music really isn't going to miss his hearing too much (Reason, July 1997).

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Dano Fernandez-Morera, American Academia and the Survival of Marxist Ideas, says: "In Prague, visitors have reported both cabbages and Marxist books on sale by the pound in shops near Charles University: 'A pound of cabbage costs more than a pound of Marx."

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Pop Psychology

Elaine Showalter, Princeton University English professor in her new book, Hystories, under the subheading, "Hysterical Epidemics and Modern Media," argues that Gulf War syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple personality syndrome, belief in recovered memory, ritual satanic abuse, and alien abduction share something besides a complete lack of credible evidence. They are, she says, latter-day hysterias, psychosomatic disorders whose roots lie not in organic causes but in psychological distress.

Showalter wrote: "There's an incredible externalization of problems going on. We have this image of our society as a therapeutic culture. It's true - there's been an incredible proliferation of therapy: You know the 12-step programs, the Recovery Channel, the friendly neighborhood hypno-therapist, and so on. But there's a much stronger hostility to the idea that the unconscious [mind] might be responsible for problems. If I'm unhappy as an adult, then my father must have molested me. If I don't fit my ideal of how I should behave, then obviously I'm a victim of a satanic cult."

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Ronald Bailey, Reason magazine (July 1997) in an article titled, "Origin of the Species," says Darwinism is dead. He wrote: "Darwinism is on the way out. At least that what Irving Kristol announced to a gathering at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington not long ago. Darwinian evolution, according to the godfather of neo-conservatism, 'is really no longer accepted so easily by [many] biologists and scientists,' Why? Because, Kristol explained, scientifically minded Darwin doubters are once again focusing on 'the old-fashioned argument from design.' That is to say, life in all its apparently ordered complexity cannot be understood in terms of chance mutation and the competition for survival. There must, after all, be a designer. So, exit Darwin; enter - or re-enter - God."

Kristol's friend and colleague Robert Bork claims the same thing: Charles Darwin and his theories are finished. In his new work, Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline, Bork pins his anti-evolutionary attack on Darwin's Black Box: The Bio-Chemical Challenge to Evolution, a recent book by biochemist Michael Behe. Bork concludes, "Religion will no longer have to fight scientific atheism with unsupported faith. The presumption has shifted, and naturalist atheism and secular humanism are on the defensive."

Kristol nailed it down when he wrote, "If there is one indisputable fact about the human condition it is that no community can survive if it is persuaded - or even suspects - that its members are leading meaningless lives in a meaningless universe."

Another nail in the coffin of evolutionism (the religion of accepting on blind faith that human life is evolved from a lower life order) is in the work of a Los Alamos lab scientist, the world's pre-eminent expert in the design of computer models for geophysical convection. His name is John Bumgardner, who believes God created the earth less than 10,000 years ago. His computer program is widely used and accepted by scientists around the world. It is called Terra. Bumgardner created Terra to prove the story of Noah and the ark. Bumgardner says the universe itself is only a few thousand years old.

Bumgardner, after getting a master's from Princeton in electrical engineering and a Ph.D. in geophysics from UCLA, join a college Sunday school class. "I'd never encountered people who were studying the Bible like one would study any other subject," he says. The class was studying from the gospel of John and focused on the question, Who is this person, Jesus Christ. "I had to admit that never in my life had I considered that question," Bumgardner admits. He turned to a study of creation, which brought him to the "conviction ... that indeed there had been a major catastrophe in the Earth's past that accounts for a large fraction of the geological features we observe at the Earth's surface today."

Based on a model fed into Terra, Bumgardner believes that around 6,000 ago "God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the Earth," and caused an enormous blob of hot mantle material to come rushing up at incredible velocity through the underwater mid-ocean ridges. The material ballooned, displacing a tidal wave of sea water over the continents. This, Bumgardner says, was the flood on which Noah sailed, the water covering the mountains and destroying "every living substance ... which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle." Then, after 150 days, the bubble retreated with equal speed into the earth, and the continents began re-emerging, sending the runoff back to the oceans at around 100 miles an hour. Bumgardner says that this runoff would have been sufficient to create the Grand Canyon and other massive geologic features and to deposit the various sedimentary layers in about one week.

Terra proves this could be true, provided one accepts certain assumptions. Run Terra one way, and you can watch Noah's flood take place before your eyes, mathematically calculated by a supercomputer. Run Terra another way, and you get the standard geological story of 4.6 billion years. The results obtained are dependent on the numbers fed into it in the first place.

Still, Terra, proves that it could have happened in the just the way the Bible says it happened. It is not conclusive. It is impressive (Source for information about Bumgardner: U.S News & World Report, June 16, 1997). Bumgardner, by the way, is a fundamentalist Presbyterian.

A growing number of scientists around the world are now saying that evolution as an explanation of the origin of the species is fatally flawed and ought to be rejected. The design and order we see in the universe demands an intelligent, deliberate Creator- just as the Bible says. Schools like Abilene Christian University, David Lipscomb University, Pepperdine University, Harding University, should be leading this parade, but they are not. Where is the professor in any of these schools who will stand up and say straight out that evolution is wrong? Instead they go along, by silent consent if not by plain statements (see The Peaceable Kingdom, by Carroll Osburn, ACU professor), with a high school biology textbook that compares the biblical account of the world's creation to astrology, fad diets, and other forms of pseudo-science. It makes us feel somewhat like the NYPD officer chasing a 100-pound calf that was running down the street. The policeman was yelling, "Stop cow! Stop!"

"How long, O Lord, how long?"

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Joseph Sobran, Teach Your Child About Politics, wrote that you can teach your child about the tax system in a way that is easy to grasp. "Offer him, say, $10 to mow the lawn. When he has mowed it and asks to be paid, withhold $5 and explain that his is income tax. Give $1 to his younger brother, and tell him this is fair. Also, explain that you need the other $4 yourself to cover the administrative cost of giving the money. When he cries, tell him he is being selfish and greedy. Later in life he will thank you.

Sobran, in explaining how to rear your child, says, "Lie to your child constantly. Teach him that words are continually 'evolving,' and may be tomorrow the opposite of what they are today."

If these techniques do not work in teaching politics, try them in teaching religion, like they do in deconstructionism, as recommended by Professor Darryl Tippens of ACU.

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"Essentially, this is sort of the final nail in men's coffins. Men are now totally irrelevant. If this [cloning] is in fact true and possible and becomes routine, men are going to have a very hard time justifying their existence on this planet, I think" (Lesbian columnist Ann Northrop, who writes for LGNY, a homosexual publication in New York, as quoted in World. April 19, 1997).

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Feature Book: Among the Scholars

by David W. Hester

Paperback, 167 pages
$7.99 + shipping and tax if applicable

Click here to order

H. A. (Buster) Dobbs