The ‘Spring Citadel’: the beginning and end of David’s kingship

The "Spring Citadel" -- the original Jebusite fortress uncovered: Image Israel Antiquity Authority

The “Spring Citadel” — remains of the original Jebusite fortress uncovered: Image Israel Antiquity Authority

After the death of Saul, David officially became king of Israel. He had been anointed years earlier by the prophet Samuel, but never actually took the throne until much later.

David’s first order as king was to take the city of Jerusalem from the Jebusites who occupied the city.

However, the Jebusites were confident of their ability to withstand a frontal assault from David. Obviously, there was some negotiation before the battle as David tried to convince the Jebusites to surrender. (more…)

Can You Trust the Bible?

Hope Mission

Hope Mission

Scholars of the Bible are usually divided into two camps, liberals and conservatives. In the most extreme situations, these two groups despise each other. Conservative scholars generally believe that the Bible is historically accurate, and Liberals generally believe it is not.

Years ago I had an English professor at a university who identified himself as a church-going Christian. When I spoke to him in his office I mentioned that my family also went to church, and he politely asked me what church we attended. When I told him, his tone changed to a sneer, and he said “Oh, so you’re a literalist.” Apparently I was a fool who believed what the Bible said. It felt like I was the target of a racial slur.

That was my introduction to the mean streets of biblical historical criticism. (more…)

Second Chapter of Acts: The “Easter Song”

“The angel up on the tombstone said He has risen just as He said. Quickly now go tell the disciples that Jesus Christ is no longer dead.”

Second Chapter of Acts is one of my favorite Gospel groups. They were prominent during the 70s and 80s. They had a unique style that set them apart from many groups at the time.

There is not a lot of archival video footage of the band, so I was delighted when I came across video of live concert in California from 1987.

The “Easter Song” is one of my favorites by the band.

The group, which disbanded in 1988, is composed of two sisters Annie Herring and Nellie Greisen and brother Mathew Ward.

I wrote a previous article on the group, which you can read here if you are interested in a bit of their history.

Wess Morgan sings “You Paid it All”

Wess Morgan is a relatively unknown gospel singer. He serves as both worship leader and an associate pastor at Celebration of Life Church in Hendersonville, Tennessee. His parents Joseph and Yolanda Morgan pastor the church.

As a boy, John Wesley (Wess) Morgan traveled with his parents and two siblings in their singing ministry across the U.S..

However, things began to derail for Wess. He became involved in drugs and alcohol, discovering cocaine at age 15. He ended up in juvenile detention after police charged Wess with armed robbery at age 17 and was again jailed for threatening people with an axe. (more…)

Study shows even casual marijuana use affects the brain

Areas of brain affected by marijuana usage. Image Wikipedia/lecerveau.mcgill.ca

Two areas of brain affected by marijuana usage — n. accumbens and amygdale. Image Wikipedia/lecerveau.mcgill.ca

“The interaction of marijuana with brain development could be a significant problem.” Dr Han Breiter, Professor of Psychiatry and co-study author

A team of researchers has warned that even casual marijuana use can damage the brain.

Previous studies have shown that significant marijuana usage by teens can have a profound impact on the person’s brain even leading to serious mental illnesses such as  schizophrenia.

Now researchers from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Harvard University have found even casual marijuana usage by teens, as little as once a week, can affect their brain. The results of the study were published in the Journal of Neuroscience. (more…)

Is New York City discriminating against Christians?

Is liberty setting in New York City? Photo: Statue of Liberty Flicker/Mromega

Is liberty setting in New York City? Photo: Statue of Liberty Flicker/Mromega

While recent revelations suggest communist China may be marginally easing its persecution of Christians, New York City seems to be heading in the opposite direction.

A court has ruled that New York City can legally discriminate against Christians.

The case involved the New York City Board of Education’s (NYCBE) refusal to rent schools to Christian groups for worship services over the weekend, simply because they are Christian. Meanwhile, it allowed others to rent the same property. (more…)

Is China’s ‘underground church’ making Jesus more popular than Mao on Twitter?

Is the underground church in China ruling the Chinese twitter universe? Photo Tiananmen Square China Wikipedia/Derzsi Elekes Andor

Is China’s Underground Church ruling the Chinese twitter universe? Photo Tienanmen Square China Wikipedia/Derzsi Elekes Andor

Well it is not exactly Twitter, it’s Weibo which is the Chinese-sanctioned version of Twitter.

According to an analysis of activity on Weibo, by Tea Leaf Nation, Jesus is tweeted more times than Mao Zedong the founder of Chinese communism and famous for his “Little Red Book” of quotes, ready-made for Weibo.

It appears Chinese censors (estimated at 100,000) are now allowing more religious tweets on Weibo. In the past, censors deleted religious tweets. (more…)

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