Adventures through the Holy Bible – Week of September 6

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God Knows…When I Wonder About the Future – Part 1
What will the world be like in the year 2030? Is this earth getting better? Or worse? Is it going to last forever? What can I look forward to?

Jesus knows all about the future. For some time He had been hinting that He would leave friends. He said, “I shall be with you a little while longer, and then I go to Him who sent Me” (John 7:33). Later on He told them, “If I go and prepare a place for you [in My Father’s house], I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:1-3).

One day Jesus and some of His disciples were leaving the beautiful Temple in Jerusalem. Jesus had been teaching in the Temple courts. Looking at the huge white blocks of marble, the disciples were shocked by a forecast Jesus made: “Not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down,” (Matthew 24:2). The minds of the disciples filled with questions. What would happen? They let their questions fly.

Q & A
Like most people, the disciples had their eyes more on the here and now than on the future. They looked at the Temple. It was so strong and well built. Some of the stones, history experts say, were huge—about 20 x 2 x 2.7 meters. When would it be destroyed? “Tell us,” they said, “When will these things be?” (Matthew 24:3)

Jesus didn’t answer their question. In fact, a few weeks later He told them plainly it was not for them to know the TIME. Instead, he gave them warnings, made promises, and then described the signs they wanted to know about. “When you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately.”

Nearly 40 years after Jesus spoke, Jerusalem and the beautiful Temple were destroyed, just as Jesus predicted. His disciples didn’t know that many hundreds of years pass between the destruction of Jerusalem and His second coming.

Jesus told the disciples of many signs that would take place before His return. Jesus told them that there would be great earthquakes in various places, arid famines, as well as signs in the sun and moon and stars. History tells us that many of these things have already occurred. We still look anxiously for His coming!

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The First 15

Blooms in the Desert

https://www.first15.org/02/01/blooms-in-the-desert/

by
Rachel Denison

I don’t think I’ve fully felt like myself in over a year. It’s hard to even know where to begin. Some seasons are so clearly beautiful and life-giving, but there are some seasons in life that can also look like a desert – less beautiful at first glance.

I recently came back from a trip to Tucson, Arizona. I had never been to the desert before, and had preconceived notions of what it would be like. My idea of the desert was barren, hot, lifeless and sparse (movies or cartoons often paint that sort of picture). We even catch glimpses of the effects of the desert in the Old Testament with Israel’s 40 years wandering, and in the New Testament when Jesus spent 40 days fasting alone. I simply didn’t picture the desert as a pleasant place or somewhere I’d ever want to find myself.

But here I am, in a desert – not physically, but spiritually. I can’t quite remember how I got here or how it started, and I wouldn’t say I’ve always been grateful in this season. My thirst for God is greater than it has ever been, but so is my weariness. Most of the time I feel tired, empty, numb and alone. But unlike in any other season, I am seeing the nearness and faithfulness of God, despite my own inconsistency and lack of drawing near.

As I walked around Tucson last month, I was floored by the beauty, life and growth all around me in a place where I thought growth could not be sustained. Nature had adapted to the place God had planted it, and by his mercy still found its way to water sources and all it needed not only to survive, but thrive. It felt like everywhere I looked, I saw some of the most beautiful plants, flowers and wildlife I have ever seen.

And so I am finding it is with me. Though I’m in a spiritual desert, I am almost constantly surprised by God’s merciful blooms popping up, and his water sources nourishing me in my time of need – satisfying and reviving my thirsty soul. I am seeing growth all around me in the very heart I’d labeled barren and dried up.

Blooms in the desert for me look like:

  •  My child sleeping in late allowing me time to sneak away to the secret place
  • Deep, rich, meaningful conservations with women in my community all pouring out our hearts together
  • A new worship song on repeat that hits me right where I’m at
  • Beautiful, unseasonal weather and time outside where the sun hits my face
  • Putting my phone away long enough to get quality time with my son and hear his deep belly laugh
  • And so much more…

Had I not been looking, I most certainly would’ve missed the blooms altogether. I easily would have stamped this desert season as barren, wasteful and dead. But just as the Lord took care of his people all those years ago in the desert, he is showing up and taking care of me now.

“He found him in a desert land,
and in the howling waste of the wilderness;
he encircled him, he cared for him,
he kept him as the apple of his eye.” –Deuteronomy 32:10

I can, by the grace of God, say with confidence that God has kept me as the apple of his eye, even in the midst of “the howling waste of the wilderness.” When I open my eyes and really look, I can see the delight of God. I can feel his love and care. And I want that for you too.

If you are in a season of wilderness or desert, I pray you are encouraged. He doesn’t waste one day. And he is in your midst, even if you don’t feel him. I pray we all have eyes to see the blooms in our deserts, and allow our hearts to be guided to the water sources he is providing.

Take hold of every moment. Instead of going numb, lift your eyes to see all that he is doing. God intends for our deserts to be places of growth, stretching, life and reaching out. May we not waste the season we’re in for lack of vision of what it could hold. May God bless you as you seek him.

Millions of Years Old DNA?

Millions of Years Old DNA?

1 Timothy 6:20
“O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called…”

While even many Christians feel obligated to accept millions of evolutionary years, evidence continues to build for a young creation. The evidence has mounted to the point that even many evolutionists feel they must find some explanation for it.

In a previous Creation Moments program, we talked about DNA and other cell material found unfossilized in what was otherwise a fossilized T. rex. Since then, a hadrosaur leg bone with intact blood cells has also been found. Then there is the mummified hadrosaur that was the subject of a television special. Even its internal organs were intact. According to evolutionists, we are supposed to believe that this mummy had not crumbled to dust in 77 million years. That claim is not credible, given our experience with the best preserved Egyptian mummies that are only a few thousand years old. Segments of DNA have also been found from Neanderthals, supposedly prehistoric mammals, plants and even bacteria. According to evolutionary dating, these samples range in age from 40,000 to 250 million years. Yet, we know that DNA is totally decayed in 10,000 years. Enough color pigment cells remain in a fossilized feather that you can still see the color pattern. Yet, it is supposedly more than 100 million years old.

While evolutionists have tried some explanations for this evidence, the simplest explanation is that they are young.

Prayer: Father, fill me with a greater hunger for Your Word so that, taught by You, I will not be misled by falsehood. Amen.

Author: Paul A. Bartz

Ref: Acts & Facts, 6/09, p. 17, Brian Thomas, “Fossilized Biomaterials Must Be Young.”

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