It is difficult to imagine the grief and raw emotion of a small Israelite child who had to watch the sacrifice of an innocent lamb which he considered his pet. The closest we could come to that would probably be when we had to watch a favorite pet being put down at the vet’s office. In both cases there would be a sacrifice, but without the blood in the latter one. Continue reading
As soon as the preschooler understands that symbols represent sounds that he already knows, he or she is introduced to the ABC’s. They are the basic beginning of the English written language and the building blocks of future learning. Step by step the student is introduced to the rest of the alphabet and the wonderful joy of reading and writing.
Satan also has his ABC’s that he wants any unwary “student” to master. Continue reading
During the last 60 years or so there have been a huge number of innovations in health and medicine with many more to come. With the advent of robotics the heavy and cumbersome prosthesis of past years will surely be replaced with lighter computer controlled arms and hands. The world marveled in 1954 when Richard Herrick received a kidney from his twin brother, Ronald, in Boston. This was the first successful organ transplant and was soon followed by other organ transplants like the liver. Lewis Washkansky was the world’s first successful Continue reading
Very early in my teaching career as I was struggling to make sense of everything new that was expected of me, a very wise principal told me, “Well, sometimes we just put ourselves in our own boxes.” I wasn’t sure what that meant then, but as the years went by I began to understand it more and more. Walt Kelley had his animal character, Pogo, say, “We have met the enemy and he is us.” Both of those quotes seemed to be saying that we are often our own worst enemy. Continue reading
We knew from conversations with our Mayan brethren that there were “catacombs” somewhere near our hotel in Tizimin, Yucatan. We also knew that these were not the tombs of first century Christians like those in Rome. They were underground passages with scenes of biblical events brightly painted, hand-made and carved out of limestone. Nevertheless, we were looking for an adventure that would give our hosts some respite from their efforts to be our constant guides. The citizens of Tizimin are gentle and helpful but few will admit they don’t know their city. However, after several failures, my son and I decided to inquire at the City Hall in the main plaza. The town officials searched for at least 30 minutes to find a city map before finding one. We tried to be gracious because of their efforts, in spite of being handed one sheet of paper with lines and spaces and NO words. The lines represented the streets which led to open spaces which we assumed were the plazas. We only laughed later at our futility and still lost condition. After inquiring of several locals, we finally found the hidden “catacombs.” They were worth all the effort and the small admission fee. They were located in the backyard of a nondescript house and the tour was self-directed. The neighbors and the owners all seemed bewildered to see foreign tourists at such an early hour. Tizimin is well off the beaten path and is based on agriculture not tourism.
In one sense some folks in Tizimin were street smart because they knew the names of the plazas and streets without a street sign or map. Others in their desire to help would seldom admit that they didn’t know the exact location (Mt 15:14) (Lk 6:39). Most people in today’s secular world are looking for a place of knowledge, truth, love, and peace but are trying to find it on their own. They expect spiritual truths from the wrong sources and are frustrated when given false or misleading answers. They ask the wrong questions of the wrong people who all seem to have conflicting answers. The wisdom found in any source but God’s word is much like the map the well-meaning officials gave us.
On very rare occasions someone might find a Bible, study it and discover the truths that God inspired. Much more often people need a guide who has “street smarts.” (Acts 16:10) (Rom 10:14-15) Any Christian who has traveled these “streets” should be able to guide the searcher to the correct location. Any honest searcher will not reject advice from the guide book nor the help of the guide. The reward will be a welcome to a wonderful and joyous arrival into eternal life (Rev 21:1-4).