All posts tagged: Peter

Cappadoina home of the fairy chimneys. Photo: Benh Lieu Song/Wikipedia

Preaching the gospel among the fairy chimneys

When writing his first epistle, the Apostle Peter addresses it to the elect living in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia (1 Peter 1:1). The Apostle’s second letter was also written to these same groups of people (2 Peter 3:1). But in this list, there is one very strange place — Cappadocia, home of the fairy chimneys. Located in modern Turkey, the area is composed of a unique landscape made up of a thick layer of tufa, a soft stone made of volcanic ash from nearby volcanoes that mixed with mud and lava. Because the rock is soft, it is easily sculpted by wind, rain and water run-off forming a bizarre landscape more at home in a science fiction movie than on earth. With a landscape filled with an estimated 50,000 spires, turrets, cones and pyramids, Cappadocia is Turkey’s most famous tourist attraction. Some, because of their unique caps, have been given the name fairy chimneys. (At the end of the article there is a small slide show of the area.) Over the centuries people …

Launch of the Space Shuttle Discovery on April 5, 2010. Photo: Scott Kublin/Flickr/Creative Commons

Success despite failure

When the Atlantis Space Shuttle was returning from its space flight in 2002 a piece of insulation intended to protect the craft from the searing heat as it traveled through the atmosphere broke off on re-entry. It resulted in minor damage to a rocket booster. The crew and shuttle landed safely and because of this successful landing, the insulation issue received only a cursory inspection. The next year, insulation broke off the heat shield again. It happened during the launch of the Columbus space shuttle destroying the craft and killing all seven members of the crew. This time NASA suspended all flights and undertook a thorough investigation resulting in nearly 30 recommendations to increase shuttle safety. This story was highlighted in 2010 by two researchers — Vinit Desai, assistant professor of Management at the University of Colorado Business School and Peter Madsen a professor at BYU School of Management. They used this story as part of their study on failure as a learning tool. The said the difference responses were due to one flight being …

What really sunk Peter?

Español: Que realmente hundió al Apostol Pedro? In Mathew 14, we read the account of the Apostle Peter’s failed attempt to walk on water. After Jesus pulled Peter out of the water, the Lord said “You of little faith, why did you doubt.” Many believe Peter failed simply because he needed “more” faith. But was this actually the case? Did Peter need more faith or was there something else more sinister at work here? What does oligopistos mean? Faith was one of the important teachings of Christ. It was so important, that Jesus used an unusual word — oligopistos, commonly translated ‘little faith’ —  to describe the disciples’ faith (Matt 6:30; 8:26; 14:31; 16:8 and Luke 12:28). It’s unusual because of its rarity.  None of the other New Testament authors — other than attributing the word to Jesus — used oligopistos in their writings and surprisingly the word is not found in any Greek literature of this period. Oligopistos combines two Greek words, oligos and pistis. Pistis means faith and oligos is used to describe how small an …