19 October 2012

This 'n' That

I've always loved opening the mailbox and getting mail. Once I became an adult and started receiving and paying my own bills, the mail became a lot less fun, but I still love mail. Except for those obnoxious perfume samples that always arrive in the Macy's ads, those are annoying. So okay, I like mail.

Yesterday I walked down to my mailbox to find only one lonely item: the latest catalog for Family Christian Store (FCS). Really? This is disappointing because every time I visit my local FCS, I'm treated poorly and left wondering if they even bother to hire people who at least profess Christ. Add to that the abysmal resources offered by this store and, well, you get the idea. I'm not a fan.

So, as is to be expected, I flipped through the catalog. The first few pages are filled with trinkets and Jesus Junk. My personal favorite (as in, I love to hate it) is the kneeling Santa figurine. You know, the one where Santa Claus is kneeling and praying over the baby Jesus? Yeah, now there's a biblical, orthodox expression of the Christian faith.

A few more pages in and you find some Roman Catholic resources. I mean, really, the "Christian" store is selling rosaries? Perhaps they ought to consider a name change.

I won't even get started on the books except to say that, upon a quick glance, I only saw one redeeming one, and that was MacArthur's Twelve Unlikely Heroes. Unfortunately, it's surrounded by Perry Stone, David Jeremiah, Charles Stanley, John Ortberg, Max Lucado and Wayne Cordeiro, among others. Apparently FCS's "Book of the Year" is Sarah Young's mystical and occult-esque Jesus Calling. Ah, don't you feel that your soul is safe just walking into this store?

Okay, as you struggle to find some item on which to spend your FCS 25% off coupon, please enjoy your week in review (kind of):
  • Make sure you're checking the home page of The Elephant's Debt for updates to the situation at Harvest Bible Chapel.
  • I appreciate that Victoria Jackson takes a strong stand for what she believes, but I wish she'd work on her approach to apologetics. "Because that would make God mad" is not a convincing argument for those who hate Him.
  • Is it just me, or does the Virgin Mary always show up in New Jersey? Anybody else wondering why she's being punished like that?
  • So, Oprah invites "America's pastors" Osteen and Warren onto her show, Lifeclass, then days later an interview is released revealing that she is inspired by Sufism. Hm. I wonder if Rick Warren is regretting affirming Oprah in her damning beliefs in a false god? 
  • In Scotland, girls as young as 13 are being given the morning-after pill without parents' knowledge.
  • Closet Calvinist reviews Dan Phillips' The World-Tilting Gospel.
  • This Christianity Today article on 50 Christian Women You Should Know maybe should read, 50 professing Christian women you should know because, let's face it, there are quite a few dangerous teachers on that list.
  • Pastor Mike Abendroth of Bethlehem Bible Church and No Compromise Radio preaches on 1 Corinthians 15, discussing resurrection and that passage about baptism for the dead.
  • This is a great story (except for the fact that a 12 year old has a Facebook page). Parents, be involved in your children's lives—and make sure you know what they're doing on the internet!
  • I know a lot of Christians like to say we have liberty when it comes to celebrating things like Halloween, but I have a really good reason why we shouldn't.
  • It was a sad week as charges were filed against C.J. Mahaney's Sovereign Grace Ministries for covering up instances of child abuse. Some 14,500 pages of files on the Boy Scouts covering up abuse also were released. Perversion abounds in this country, even in the "safest" of corners. How twisted man must be to think that it is more important to protect an abuser, and a group's image, than to protect our innocent children!
  • Billy Graham: The Man and His Message


  1. You're funny EBenz. I don't care for mail because most of the time it's offers for credit cards, or just junk mail and as you said bills.. I don't mind the bills so much..

    Christian book stores are dangerous nowadays. When I first became a Christian back in 1997,, the ONLY book I read and was interested in was my bible and then well, I began writing in it and found limited space on the sides so I went to the CBS and found me another bible. Then the other books were only books related TO the bible like a concordance, a Hebrew and Greek Vines Expository. Then I was really interested in books about the Occult..
    Well, even THOSE books were stuffed away in the back on an inconspicuous shelf..

    I haven't been in one of those stores in years. I imagine they are probably filled with WOF, New Age materials and just dreck..

    Sad that Christian bookstores are just a business to make money and not to remain true to the Christian faith anymore

  2. Thanks for posting the link to The Elephant's Debt. I don't think the people of Harvest Bible Chapel understand how serious the problems are and the damage that James MacDonald and the leadership have been concealing from the congregation.

  3. Hi EBenz,

    Thank you for the video on Graham. I watched it last night and Cecil does a great job of bringing out the issues, in love but in stark truth. I appreciated that video very much.

    I've got a question for you, not related to the post, if I can prevail on your patience for a minute. I saw a video not long ago. It was short, about 3-4 minutes. It featured a young man who received a phone call, and upon hearing some news, his shoulders slumped, and then he drove out into the rainy night looking for his wayward wife. She was a prostitute, but his love and pursuit of her was persistent. He showed up to the curbside where she sat in handcuffs but he hugged her and loved her anyway. There was no dialog, just cinematography and music.

    You and I travel in the same blog circles, and I thought I had seen the video on your blog, or Challies'. Did you post it at some point? I've looked in your archives back a few months and Challies all the way back to July, and I can't find it. If you're familiar with this video, would you please pass along the name of it or a link, if you have it on your blog and it is not too much trouble? Thank you.

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend and thanks again for all your work on This N That. I enjoy those each week.

    1. Hi Elizabeth,

      That video doesn't sound familiar to me, but it does sound interesting! I don't recall seeing it anywhere, but if I look and you look, one of us is bound to find it! (And if anyone else finds it, we'd greatly appreciate if you could share the link here.) :-)

    2. Okay, everyone, we found it. The video Elizabeth was asking about is 'Part 3' in this 6-part series: http://www.communicatejesus.com/2012/05/video-the-hosea-love-story/

      Please note that this is not an endorsement of this website, or of the church that produced the videos.

    3. That's so kind of you Erin to find that video for Elizabeth. Yay\o/

      That video on Billy Graham is powerful and sad. I've known that Billy Graham has said some very disturbing things from other videos but I did NOT know he went to such lengths as he did to praise the Pope and Islam.. I'm utterly appalled and disgusted. Christianity stands alone and is so diametrically opposed to all Religions- especially Catholicism and Islam

      There are so many people who will defend him and judge Graham by his huge crusades and all the people who walked the aisles as equivalent to good fruit. They will abdicate anyone who provides the evidence that says where he truly stands with Christ. A Genuine believer WILL NOT EVER compromise the Uniqueness of God's Son, His Grace, (T)he Faith once for all given to the saints. I don't know Billy Graham's heart neither but Jesus said we WILL recognize them by their FRUIT and I'm sure we will be surprised when we get to heaven who is there and who is not.

    4. meant to say repudiate not abdicate--

    5. Linda, I thought the video was sad too. The saddest pat for mew was when the preacher said he spoke to witnessing missions people who went door to door some years after the Crusade went thru, and the people responded that they came forward at Billy's Crusade and well, they haven't been to church in years or never cracked a bible but they are sure glad they are saved...

    6. EBenz, thank you for finding it for me, and so quickly too! I searched you and Challies for an hour, searched thru Google, and for the life of me couldn't dig it up. Thank you for taking the time.

    7. You're welcome - your description of the video had me intrigued, and I did enjoy watching it (even though I never pictured Hosea in skinny jeans). :-) It took no time at all to find - happy to help! That's what fellow bloggers are for, after all. :)

  4. Yes Elizabeth and also the part when after people who came forwards and said the "sinner's prayer" all who were of Catholic backgrounds were sent back to the Catholic Church to "grow". I thought that's so deceitful and wicked just like the parable Jesus told about the different soils when the enemy comes and steals the seed.. And I just LOVED the analogy he gave that when a person is saved you give them (pure) milk
    I'm sure there are a few people saved but not near the numbers as visualized..
    Btw, I looked at the web page where "Billy Graham site removes Mormon 'cult' reference after Romney meeting" and they're pictured sitting around with all smiles.. Makes me SICK to see them accommodating to a CULT. Their compromise is lending credence to Mormonism as "if" it were "Christian". How utterly shameful.

    Okay, I'm gonna have to watch that video now. You ladies have me very curios

  5. That is quite an amazing list of women: Held Evans, Winner, Schirer, Moore, Caine, Kay Warren......can't get much more sound than that, can you????

    Lord help us all when such as these are held up to women as role models.

  6. Ohh...I forgot about Voskamp. Great to see that her "prosetry" is "enriched with quotes from such notables as C.S. Lewis, Henri Nouwen and Annie Dillard" They left the word "questionable" out before the word "notables".

    1. Voskamp is a shocker.. Just goes to show the lack of discernment and that Christians are falling asleep. WAKE UP from your slumber.

      1Th 5:5-8 "You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled.For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night.But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet."

      Here's a very powerful video by R.C. Sproul called "Asleep in the Light" http://www.ligonier.org/rym/broadcasts/video/asleep-light1/

      Quote Phil Johnson-"True unity is achieved not by eliminating boundaries, but by eliminating error and deceit." –John 17:19-23.


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