Evangelism, The Church, and Early Christian Ethics

CAME ACROSS THIS TODAY AND FOUND IT TO BE AN OUTSTANDING ARTICLE!

In his book, The Patient Ferment of the Early Church, Alan Kreider makes the case that the substantial growth of Christianity from the resurrection of Christ through the 300’s was tied to the church’s emphasis on the patient ethical formation of believers. According to Kreider, there was no grand strategy of cultural influence nor any attempt to accommodate the worship service of the church to make outsiders feel more comfortable. Instead, the primary focus of church leadership was to see the habitus (habitual behavior) of Christ-followers formed so they were noticeably distinct in their moods, affections, and actions from their neighbors…

SOURCE: Evangelism, The Church, and Early Christian Ethics

Fallen Soldiers Memorial Torch Run

Mike “Hardcase” Poirier will be on the road once again (God willing*) beginning 03 July and returning to the Jackson area around the second week of August.

He will be participating as Chaplain and Medic with the Tribute to Fallen Soldiers Memorial Ride 2021 from Eugene, OR across the northern US the Northeast, and down into Arlington, VA.

Each summer all riders across the United States are invited to gather in Eugene, Oregon to participate in our annual Tribute to Fallen Soldiers Memorial Torch Motorcycle Ride.

This is our annual ( cross country ) tribute ride in which we escort the ‘Fallen Soldiers Memorial Flame’ from Eugene to Arlington National Cemetery in Washington D.C. to honor and pay tribute to America’s fallen service members.

TFS Website

For more information see the link HERE.

RIDE ONE LEG,…ONE DAY,…ONE WEEK,…OR THE ENTIRE CROSS-COUNTRY JOURNEY.

DEPARTS EUGENE, OREGON; Saturday, July 10, 2021

ARRIVES ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY; Sunday, Aug. 8, 2021

  • 17 States Traveled
  • 75 Fallen Service Members Honored
  • A Ride of Honor You Won’t Forget!
  • Join Us!

Mike’s route to Eugene can be seen here. If you are located along either route please contact Mike and make arrangements to say hello.

Also, if you, your group, or association would like to sponsor a fuel stop, snacks or hydration for the riders they would certainly appreciate it.

The nightly stops are scheduled for:

(*) Mike bike is still in the shop from the HHT trip awaiting parts. We are praying they arrive in time for his scheduled departure.

Addiction, Intervention, and Forgiveness

Dr. Gregory Jantz Appears on ‘Focus on the Family Broadcast’ to Discuss Addiction, Intervention, and Forgiveness

EDMONDS, Wash., June 24, 2021 /Christian Newswire/ — Addiction – in its many forms – has been widely considered a problem in the United States for decades. Throughout the years, it has been affecting families and communities by compromising health, lives, and relationships. According to CDC, it is a medical condition that needs an intervention that helps lead to recovery…

Source: Dr. Gregory Jantz Appears on ‘Focus on the Family Broadcast’ to Discuss Addiction, Intervention, and Forgiveness

A Pastor’s Prescription for Overcoming Victim Mentality

A Pastor’s Prescription for Overcoming Victim Mentality

“We weren’t calling for a hatred,” pastor James E. Ward Jr. recalls. “We weren’t calling for destruction. We’re calling for peace and speaking the love of God over the city. And it really went viral.”

More

Devotional Thought for Today – 06/12/2021

ITCHY EARS

What Does 2 Timothy 4:3 Mean?

2 Timothy 4

CONTEXT: In the final chapter of 2 Timothy, Paul writes about two major themes. The first is quite obvious the importance of preaching the Word of God (2 Timothy 4:1–8). The second section offers personal concerns and thoughts to Timothy (2 Timothy 4:9–22).

In order to understand our text, we need to understand the previous verse, the Command or Charge (v.2) from Paul to Timothy to Preach the Word! He must be ready when it is convenient (in season) and inconvenient or troublesome to preach (out of season). He, Timothy must be ready to JUDGE those in error and point out their errors (reprove and rebuke). Finally, Timothy is to encourage, support, aid, and comfort the church (exhort) by using sound Biblical teaching (doctrine) and patient leadership (longsuffering).

Now our Text for Today (v.3) makes more sense, especially in today’s churches. Far too many folks have itchy ears and want whatever they can get out of a “worship” service. Somehow their Theology and Doctrine (these are almost 4 letter words in some evangelical circles) are all screwed up. They have placed themselves and their needs above God. 😥

He is the best preacher, not that tickles the ear, but that breaks the  heart.

Paul makes it clear to Timothy and it should be clear to everyone who stands behind a pulpit (or wherever they stand or sit today) The object of Worship, the Object of Preaching is Christ and Him crucified, not the folks in the pew. Churches are not places to bring the world into they are the House of God, Holy Sanctuaries, and should be treated as such. It is far too easy today to walk into many churches and be confused thinking it is an amusement park.

” If a teacher fascinates with his doctrine, his teaching never came from God. The teacher sent from God is the one who clears the way to Jesus and keeps it clear; souls forget altogether about him because the vision of Jesus is the only abiding result. When people are attracted to Jesus Christ through you, see always that you stay on God all the time, and their hearts and affections will never stop at you.”

Oswald Chambers 


Other Resources:

What does 2 Timothy 4:3 mean by itching ears?

Devotional Thought for Today – 03/08/2021, Beware False Teachers

Seduced With Flattery

What makes a room or building a sanctuary?

The masses demand that which will soothe them in their sins and amuse them while they journey down the Broad Road!

If I Only Had One Sermon To Preach”

Who is Charles Spurgeon?

Prince of Preachers

One of many famous historical theologians we use for inspiration in our work is none other than the “Prince of Preachers,” Charles Spurgeon. Spurgeon is known for being one of the most influential ministers of his time, and furthering the spread of Christianity throughout England. This month, we’ll be examining his legacy and the role he played in contributing to reformed Christianity…

Read Full Blog

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Devotional Thought for Today – 04/27/2021

Comfort for the Grieving, Hurting, and Dying Series – Part XVII

Palliative Care Icon , Free Transparent Clipart - ClipartKey

Over the last 16 articles in this series, we have looked at a number of things dealing with Grief as they relate to Chaplains. Today I hope to summarize and close the series.

Psalm 34:18-19

Everyone will experience some form of grief at some point in their lives. From the beginning, we made it clear that we consider the primary mission of a Chaplain to be to provide Compassionate Care, Comfort, and Counsel (4 C’s) to those assigned to them.

We began by giving a few general thoughts on Chaplaincy and a list of some hotlines for crisis situations. Next, we began looking at grief itself by listing the traditional 5 Stages of Grief and spent the next 6 days looking at them and then the more modern 7 stages of grief.

The article in the series was one of the most important (in my opinion) it was a list of some dos and don’ts that I have gleaned over the years. Believe me when I say I made a lot of don’t in order to figure out the dos. Finally, we defined Chaplain’s duties and responsibilities in general and then in specific job settings over the remaining article.

We looked at many things but, we did not look at the individual, the patient, the victim, in whatever the situation the Chaplain finds themself dealing with. I remember studying or reading (I honestly can’t find the reference) a Client’s Bill of Rights, in reference to the Stages of Grief:

  1. Your grief is unique to you and you have a right to experience your way. – The grief process is different for everyone and we can not force someone into a mold or pre-designed recovery program.
  2. You can talk about your grief in your own way. – Some folks naturally open up and want to talk others tend to be more retrospective. Again we can not and should not force them. Good Chaplains are good listeners.
  3. You have a right to be very emotional. – Most folks experience a multitude of emotions when grieving and that is okay, as long as the emotions are not harmful to themselves or others. Another thing to be watchful for is emotional outbursts, crying and even anger are common. These emotions can be draining so listen to your body get the extra rest you need.
  4. You have the right to a Funeral – COVID really hurt many in more ways than one. The inability to hold traditional burial rituals denied people the ability to mourn. Even “non-religious” folks usually adhere to this ritual as a way to mourn. It is there right.
  5. Religion plays a big part in many grief situations. We mentioned this before, this is not an opportunity for Chaplains to push religion, but to practice their 4-C’s no matter the person’s beliefs.
  6. Why? – You have a right to search for answers this is common and sometimes healthy (I say sometimes because it can become an unhealthy obsession) by encouraging folks to seek answers many times we are encouraging them to open up to the simple truths.
  7. Remembrance You have a right to your memories especially of all the good times. It prepares us for moving on with the full grief process and life.
  8. Life – You have a right to move on with your life, no matter how crappy you feel initially there is hope and things can get better.

Although the above is more tailored towards the death of a loved one, it is applicable and adaptable to any situation. There is so much more that could (and maybe should) be written. There are of course limitless resources on Grief counseling available via the internet. As with any source (including this one) I encourage everyone to be a Berean (Acts 17:11) and do due diligence in verifying the truth and effectiveness of the material.

I pray that this series has somehow edified you and Glorified God.


I found the following perspective on Grief very interesting, I hope you enjoy reading or listening to it.

Trauma, Pain, and Loss: A Doctor’s Story of Faith and Healing

In this interview, Katie Butler discusses her work as a trauma surgeon working in the ICU and shares what it was like to be inundated with life and death situations day in and day out.

She explains how she coped with the stress of the job and eventually began to see God’s grace at work even in the midst of deep pain and tragedy. She also shares what she saw working in a hospital at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic

Devotional Thought for Today – 04/23/2021

Comfort for the Grieving, Hurting, and Dying Series – Part XVI

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As we come to the final job area of Chaplains, a reminder we started this with describing 14 specific jobs and then breaking that down into 5 job categories.

Today’s final job area for Chaplains that of Public Safety. This category encompasses:

  1. Law enforcement
  2. Fire and rescue
  3. Emergency medical services
  4. Emergency dispatch
  5. Jail/Prisons

Public Safety Chaplains like all the Chaplains we have discussed so far work for the most part, in high-stress situations. Whether they are riding along with Police, Fire, EMS, Border Patrol, Homeland Security or maybe it is the 911 dispatch of a major city things are happening at a fast pace. Of course, there are those who choose to serve behind locked gates. where the threat of violence is very real. Having served as a Police Officer (part-time) back in the 80s and more recently as a Prison Chaplain, I have some knowledge in this area.

Psalm 82:3-4

Their job/mission like all the others is to provide those 4-C’s, Compassionate Care, Comfort, and Counsel in those environments to staff and individuals (inmates, families, and friends of victims of traumatic events) In most cases Chaplains work quietly behind the scenes sometimes advising the on-scene commanders or warden of needs of the personnel. Public Safety Chaplains are dedicated to ministering to all folks no matter their religious beliefs and always respect the beliefs of those whom they serve.

Some of the things all these jobs can have in common are conducting services (worship funeral, baptism, retirements, etc.) prayer meetings, hospital visitations, family visitations, family counseling, and of course the catch-all, other duties as assigned 😀.

I could continue to ramble on, but I will instead give some examples of Chaplain Job descriptions:

Here are the duties of a Police Chaplain as listed by the International Association of Police Chaplains:

Duties of a Chaplain (Fire) from Sandoval County New Mexico

Prison Chaplaincy Careers (Duties) from Missioui Deptartment of Corrections

Why Prison Ministry?

Here is a tool I hope will be helpful, back when I was Sr. Chaplain at the County Jail I used this as a training aid for potential new volunteers. I figured if they could sit through a 6-hour block of instruction plus the slamming (and locking) of the prison doors (some never made it past that point) they might be candidates for the Sherrif to interview also:

Devotional Thought for Today – 04/21/2021

Comfort for the Grieving, Hurting, and Dying Series – Part XV

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Today we will look at the fourth job area for Chaplains that of the Military. Most Chaplains depending on their denomination are appointed, commissioned, or ordained. All military Chaplains are officers so they are Commissioned, some also ordained by their governing denominations. In addition, most commands above the company level (Amry, Air Force, and Marines, I assume the Navy and Coast Guard are much the same) have enlisted Chaplain assistants.

In the Army, the driving leadership motto was always “My Mission, My Men, Myself.” Meaning the success of the mission was paramount taking care of your men came a close second then worry about yourself. I mention this to note that along with Beans, Bullets and the like the Spiritual needs of the men was always a concern.

During my enlistment ’74-’94 I held many MOS’s (job specialties) but never Chaplain assistant. However, as a First Sergeant and Operations Sergeant, I worked closely with the Chaplains staff to ensure the spiritual needs of the men were being met.

Military Chaplains have big responsibilities and big shoulders. Not only do they have to be that person who can carry out the 4-C’s (compassionate Care, Comfort, and Counsel) for the service member, command, and families, they must also be ready to don the combat gear and go into harm’s way.

The U.S. Army recruiting Command in their literature says the following:

A chaplain’s mission is to bring Soldiers to God and God to Soldiers. America calls on our Army to fight and win our nation’s wars and Army chaplains are there every step of the way. Whether in training or operations, Army chaplains represent hundreds of American denominations and faith traditions and fulfill a sacred calling of service captured in our motto, “Pro Deo et Patria” (for God and country)

https://recruiting.army.mil/MRB_ReligiousServices/
A Soldier's Psalm 91 Prayer.

Instead of me rambling on any further about these brave service members let me share an article from one fellow soldier:

The Responsibilities of an Army Chaplain

Jonathan C. Gibbs III


Soldier’s Prayer Blog Post with downloadable links

One final note, maybe you would like to “serve” as a military Chaplain but you think the opportunity is gone due to age, or some other issue, consider checking with your local state militia.

David Brainerd “It might have convinced an atheist, that the Lord was indeed in the place!”

American Minute with Bill Federer

David Brainerd was born in Haddam, Connecticut, APRIL 20, 1718. His parents died while he was a young teenager…

Source: https://americanminute.com/blogs/todays-american-minute/david-brainerd-oh-how-precious-is-time-that-god-would-make-me-more-fruitful-american-minute-with-bill-federer

ALSO SEE: https://fsmandfsmwo.blog/2020/01/14/today-in-church-and-u-s-history-10/