Building the Masterpiece – My Journey into the Mind of Mark Twain

copulationI was deeply fascinated by what I discovered while researching for this book. Firstly, don’t be fooled by the title (it had to be softened for the Christian market). But this is a book is about sex.  It begins by stating that according to the Bible, God started the human race by creating a naked couple and commanding them to have sex.  That’s kind of embarrassing, but it’s true.

Although Mark Twain believed in God, he didn’t believe that the Bible was the Creator’s Word. In fact, he hated the God revealed in the Scriptures–the One who spoke against adultery and fornication. He bemoaned the fact that not being allowed to commit adultery was “cruelly hard.” Continue Reading →

The Next Step of My Journey: Finding Joy at AiG

 

In theU of SC Lancaster logo autumn of 1986, I began teaching astronomy and physics at the University of South Carolina Lancaster. USCL, as we affectionately call it, is one of the smaller campuses in the University of South Carolina system. During my time there, USCL increased in size tremendously, with a more than doubling in enrollment and a doubling in the number of faculty. When I went to Lancaster, I didn’t know how long that I might stay, but I quickly grew to love my colleagues, our students, and the wonderful Lancaster community, so it soon became home. USCL was a good environment for me: I rose to the rank of Full Professor, and in retirement I hold the title of Distinguished Professor Emeritus. It’s probably the first time that my name and the word “distinguished” have been used in the same context.

Faulknerclass1And I was able to pursue my passion about biblical creation while there. For instance, when my first book came out, Universe by Design, John Catalano, the USCL Campus Dean at the time, insisted on doing a book signing on our campus, something that he did for all faculty members who published a book. That evening, I think that he gave me the best introduction that I have ever received. Though not everyone at the University agreed with my belief in creation, they respected my performance in the classroom, my other scholarly work, and my service to the campus and the community. Continue Reading →

What Josiah Would Tell Us

What Josiah Would Tell Us

Josiah is Made King II KIngs 22:1He was the leader of a nation at eight years old. His administration was characterized by a fear of God that not only drove his personal life, but also transformed the nation under his rule. The lessons to be learned from his life are so important that God chose to record them twice in Scripture.

His name was Josiah, and you can read about him in II Kings 22 and II Chronicles 34. Josiah was one of the most godly kings Israel ever had the blessing of knowing. His story has some lessons that would serve us well today.

What Would He Say?

If godly Josiah could come back from the grave and speak to us today, what would he have to say to us? Of course we can only speculate, but some things about his example are so clear that I’ll risk drawing some conclusions.

First, I think Josiah would tell us that we can rise above the failures of previous generations. Josiah was the son of Amon and the grandson of Manasseh, two of the most rotten eggs ever to disgrace a throne. Manasseh repented of his abominations late in life, but Amon did not. He was so vile that God tolerated him as king of Israel for only two years before Amon’s own servants assassinated him. Yet Josiah turned to God with his whole heart at age 16 and never turned away.

That’s good news for the young people in our homes today. For a couple of generations, the love of the American church has waxed cold and we have become very much like the pagan society around us. Our cultural institutions have become contaminated with godless philosophies and the church has largely been silent. Continue Reading →

Sometimes Serving Jesus Stinks

I remember it like yesterday. One of the most profound, life-changing experiences of my life.

I was in my early 20’s and working two jobs. The flexible schedules were nice. My first job, managing a crisis pregnancy center, was my passion. The second job, working as an executive assistant, paid the bills.

On this memorable day I got a call from my second boss while I was at the Crisis Pregnancy Center. She asked if I could come to a last-minute event with a celebrity to mingle and represent the company. I gladly agreed, saying that I’d have to come straight from work with no change of clothes, so I might not look the most presentable.

Serving

That day was exhausting. It was busy. Clients in and out. Babies throwing up on me. Quick staff meeting where the conclusion was: Keep sharing the love of Jesus. One client, who lived on a park bench, broke down sobbing on my shoulder. She left her tears, and the smell of not having a shower, on me. As the day ended and I ran out the door to the celebrity event, I did my best to freshen up. But, there was no doubt about it. I was going to take the essence of the clinic with me. Continue Reading →

Ebola and the Genesis of Germs

ebola strainThe latest epidemic of hemorrhagic fever caused by the Ebola virus has captured the international news headlines. The Ebola outbreak is currently wreaking havoc in Africa and scares many in this country as two missionaries return back to the United States for treatment. The suspected cases approach 2000 and the confirmed deaths by August 8 have reached 921. The numbers of cases reported in West Africa this year are more than triple of any epidemic since the disease was first described in 1976. Ebola infection starts like many other tropical diseases like malaria, with fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and weakness; but then in about 10 days massive bleeding, hemorrhaging and destruction occur.

The spread of scary diseases like Ebola is a cause for concern and leads to questions such as:

  1. Where did all these germs come from, and how do they fit into a biblical worldview?
  2. How can something so small have such a huge deadly impart on the world around us?

Continue Reading →