All posts filed under: z127

Book Release: ‘Captivating Creative Craftsmen and Study Guide’

We don’t normally do this, but Myrna Petersen, a popular author on opentheword.org, has just published a book on Christians and the arts and we decided to provide a bit of an overview of the book for those who might be interested in purchasing it. Inspirational stories behind Biblical artisans. As we draw closer to the Creator of the universe, we’ll be inspired to create new works. Written by Myrna Petersen with editing and graphic design by Open the Word’s Dean Smith, this is a great read for individuals or in a small group study. It is not how-to-instruction in the art of one’s choice but rather, a book to help crafts people, artists and musicians draw closer to the creator of the universe to release one’s creativity. When you know and work with the Creator of the human spirit, you’ll be inspired to create new works. In the beginning God created man in His own image. Since human beings are created in the image of our Abba Father, we should function as creators, making new …

Luxli's MRI revealing the tumor in the scan on the left and and then its miraculous disappearance in the scan on the right. Credit: Youtube screen shot KVUE-TV and USA TODAY

Texas doctors stunned as rare, deadly, incurable brain tumor miraculously disappears

For several months, the media has been following the case of, Roxli Doss, 11, a girl living in Buda, Texas who neurosurgeons diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in June 2018. It all started with Roxli’s complaints of head aches and double vision and after going to the doctor she was diagnosed with a very rare and aggressive form of brain cancer — Diffuse Instrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). According to doctors it was an incurable form of brain cancer that would begin to affect her breathing and heart rate and areas of the brain that affects how we “see, hear, walk, talk and eat.” Eventually it hindering your basic ability breath, eat and live. When news came out, the community rallied around the family. Fundraising events were held and a Gofundme page was set up for help to pay the medical bills. Though there was no hope for a cure, in an interview with KVUE TV back in August, Roxli’s father Scott said the family was turning to God and praying and believing for a …

Fireworks in Spain Credit: Ryan/Flickr/Creative Commons

“Now That’s Worth Celebrating!”

Now that’s worth celebrating! I remember those words being said on the very rare occasion I actually did something worth celebrating. I think one time was when I was managed to convince my wife to actually say I do and not run screaming back up the aisle! Of course the ten pounds of concrete I put in her shoes helped as well but I digress. Back in the day, whatever day you pick, let’s say Saturday. Saturday December 12, 1986, the day Stella married me. I married her too but I wasn’t the pretty one! That day we celebrated! There was food, music, dancing, and fun. We celebrated other life’s milestones and achievements. Whatever the reason, we always knew why we celebrated. Now I think the art of celebration is gone. We celebrate for the sake of celebration. We even celebrate Fridays! Or cheap wing nights! We don’t save it for significant milestones or events. Like the two greatest events of all time. Christmas and Easter are the birth and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. …

Credit: Mark Lehigh/Flickr/Creative Commons

Fake Christian Conversion and Migration

Sometimes a news organization will report that migrants are converting to Christianity, and it’s obvious that the conversion allows them to make a refugee claim, if they come from a country where Christians are persecuted. As new Christians, they can say they will be punished or even killed if they are deported to their home country, since they have converted away from the approved religion. In Iran, for example, the only religious conversion permitted, is to Islam, and I imagine that means to the approved sect of Shia Islam. Saudi Arabia has a similar policy, and conversion away from Islam, apostasy, can be punished by death. There are many places in the world where conversion away from the religion of the ancestors, and of the government, can bring severe punishment. Many of those countries are Islamic, but I’m sure a Buddhist in Myanmar (Burma) or possibly Thailand would cause an offense if they converted away from the national religion. I don’t know if they would be punished severely, but I’m sure they would be criticized. …

Credit: Adriana Lukas/Flickr/Creative Commons

Can Christians have an unhealthy fear of the demonic? An interview with Wayne Johnston: PODCAST

Audio Notes: Hi my name is Dean Smith and in this episode I am interviewing Wayne Johnston and asking the question: “Can Christians have an unhealthy fear of the demonic?” Wayne serves as an elder at Rock of the Valley church and also functions of the prophetic ministry and I’ve been wanting to interview him about an interesting experience that he had with both a demon and an angel of the Lord. Dean Smith: Welcome Wayne. Wayne Johnston: Thank you Dean: So how would you describe your prophetic ministry? Wayne: So I function in the area of the prophetic. God clearly gave me a gift of prophecy. It wasn’t my choice, but it came down to God wanting to encourage others through the gift just like any other spiritual gifts in the New Testament. Dean: I’ve seen people who have referred to you as a prophet. Do you consider yourself a prophet? Wayne: No. I just don’t think it’s my job to put a title on the gift. So it’s in the area of the …

Credit: ScrewJ/Flickr/Creative Commons

Look to the Mountains of Mercy

If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot disown Himself. (2 Timothy 2:13 NIV) We so easily fall into the trap of religion where we judge people by what they do or don’t do and the choices they make. The reason we judge others is it gives us a reason to not show mercy or kindness. Yet that is so contrary to how God treats us, who remains faithful even if we are faithless. We do not serve a pagan god who requires rules and regulations to please or appease him. God’s judgement towards us has been appeased by Christ’s blood shed on the cross. Whatever thoughts or struggles I may have with someone, I am learning to first look at myself and see if there is a personal message about my own shortcomings and poor choices. As I have dealt with my personal struggles in this area, I keep seeing a vision of God’s mountains of mercy that surround us. And as we walk through the valley that winds between the mountains …

Monument displaying Communism's hammer and sickle being installed in a park in China: Credit: Serpentaz/Youtube capture

The Communist revival and rising persecution of Christians

Two recent stories this Christmas season reveal Communism’s utter hatred for Christians and it is concerning because it may be a foretaste of what is coming in North America as some political parties seem to be taking a radical turn to the left. Writing for Faithwire, Vernon Brewer shared a story of what is happening in North Korea under its Communist despot Kim Jong-un.  Brewer regularly helps bring Bibles into North Korea that is not only dangerous for him, but those receiving them. On one of his journeys into the communist country, he shared a story told him by a young man who Brewer referred to as Eun to protect his identity. Eun was in the third grade when his teacher made an unusual request of her class: “When you go home, I want you to look for a book. Normally [the book] is black. Normally it’s hidden, and your mom or dad read it when you are asleep. If you look hard enough, you can find the book. And if you bring it, we …

Listening to God’s voice saved their lives

In an interview with Foxnews, two men on their way to a pastor’s conference stated that Jesus spoke to them saving both from imminent death. Jordan Cole and Kenneth Bryant were traveling the Ohio Turnpike on a trip from Montana to Philadelphia when the truck they were driving broke down. The men were in their Mudman Burgers (Food Truck), that is part of a nonprofit organization selling burgers in support of Potter’s Field that ministers to children around the world. Still in their stopped burger truck, Bryant was using the generator in the back to charge his cell phone while Cole remained in the cab. Suddenly both men were warned to get out of the vehicle. Cole said he heard a voice and Bryant received what he described as a vision. The two men immediately jumped out and seconds later a large semi truck veering out of control smashed into their vehicle, destroying it. Ohio State Police said that if both had still been inside, they would have undoubtedly died. In an interview with Fox …

Nativity scene in France Credit: (required by the license) © Guillaume Piolle / CC BY 3.0/Wikipedia

Did an ‘all-knowing’ God impregnate Mary without her consent?

Minnesota State University (MSU) professor Eric Sprankle recently received his 15 minutes of fame when he  tweeted that God impregnated, Mary, the mother of Jesus, without her consent. Similar to many provocateurs, Sprankle sent the tweet out purposefully during the Christmas season. In his tweet, Sprankle wrote: The virgin birth story is about an all-knowing, all-powerful deity impregnating a human teen. There is no definition of consent that would include that scenario. Happy Holidays. — Eric Sprankle, PsyD (@DrSprankle) December 3, 2018 Apparently, Sprankle considers himself as an expert on sexuality and leads the Sexual Health Research Team at MSU and now he claims to be an expert on theology and the Bible as well. Well, let’s take a closer look at Sprankle’s tweet. He describes God as “all-knowing,”  In theological terms, God is “omniscient” which mean He knows everything, past, present and future. So if God is all-knowing, would He know if Mary would consent to being impregnated? Obviously yes. And that is exactly what happened in the birth story found in Luke. An …

Rene Martinez walking in the streets of Nicauragua in lead up to a bare knuckles fight. Credit Rene Martinez/Fox News

The power of testimony: Former ‘Latin Syndicate’ gang leader now preaching Christ

It has been a remarkable transformation for notorious gang leader Rene Martinez, 44. Martinez, who has been in jail several times, has been behind bars for everything from  attempted murder to drug dealing, theft (including guns), and fights. In an interview with Foxnews, Martinez said: “I did some horrible things in my life that I know that it’s only by the grace of God and His mercy that I’m alive and free. I was gang affiliated from the 80s to 2012. I have seen a lot of people die in front of me and I’ve been through a lot.” It started early in life. Martinez said his mother, who was involved in Santeria, sacrificed an animal over him as a child and growing up he was literally seeing demons. 1n 1989, at the age of 14,  he joined the infamous Latin Syndicate on Halloween night. But when his mother became a Christian shortly after attempting suicide, she began praying for her son and in 2013, while Martinez was performing gangster rap in his garage, Jesus …