Saturday, January 15, 2011

Zodiac Changes???

There has been a recent furor over possible zodiac changes. A scientist astronomer announced that over the last three thousand years the earth has wobbled on its axis enough that the star fields have moved in relation to the sun from the earth’s point of view. He dared to suggest that the zodiac was in need of adjustment with perhaps a thirteenth sign.

As you might imagine astrologers went nuts. They have tried to assure all their clients that nothing was wrong with the zodiac from their point of view.
We might note that astrology is not a science but a religion or at best an art form. It was invented in Babylon over three thousand years ago as a way of telling the future. The signs of the zodiac were also deities to be worshiped.

From a Christian point of view astrology is an ancient idol worship for when you put your faith in a horoscope reading, based on the sign of the zodiac, your are turning your back on faith in God. Even though astrology has remained popular over the centuries it is not allowed in the bible.  

Every now and then someone will open a conversation with me by asking, “What’s your sign?” and I know what they mean. My answer often confuses them. I say, “My sign is the cross.”  I usually get a blank stare and then they say, “No I mean your birth sign.” To which I reply, “I was born again under the sign of the cross and my faith in the future is in Jesus.”    

As a pastor I encourage all Christians to keep faith with Jesus and answer, “My sign is the cross!”

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Tradition of Epistles

The Roman orator Cicero began a process of writing letters that were instructive beginning the rise to prominence of the personal letter as a vehicle for oral instruction. The letters were meant to be read to an audience as though the author was speaking. Over a hundred years later Paul would use the same epistolary tool for teaching the young Christian congregations from a great distance.

The congregations Paul started loved his letters, saved them and had them copied and sent to other Christians. The first century Christian church continued to use this process even through times of persecution and thus providing us with the Bible we have today.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Cause and Effect

Sales people can often entice us to waste our money on something we don’t need. That new fancy gadget on TV looks like something I can’t live with out so I order it. When it arrives I discover that is does not live up to its advertizing and I am disappointed.

Temptation may lure us in to areas where we should not go and we get into trouble. At a party it is easy for a young person to be enticed to have a drink of beer or wine. More offers may follow and the decision process is blurred.   Once mental function is dampened other enticements, such as pills or sniffing white power, are more easily accepted. Actually this can happen at any age but our youth are more endangered.

The story of Eve’s temptation in the Garden of Eden is all about cause and effect for our actions. Can we learn a lesson without going through the pain of bad effects?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Political Violence

The past two years of political rhetoric has had a relentless escalation of calls for violent actions against the political left – read that democrats. I have viewed “Tea Party” videos calling for the death of our president and those who support him. It has been more than a difference of opinion. It has been hateful.

Is it any wonder that what happened in Tucson, Arizona is a reality? Are those radical right “news personalities” who spew hate against President Obama partly responsible for the actions of a deranged young man shooting a democrat congresswoman in Arizona?

Our freedom of speech carries with it the responsibility to be aware of the possible reactions of the fringe elements in our society who carry guns.