Film – Izvoarele Adincului Celui Mare

Studiu aspura cartii Genesa, inclusiv  ‘Arca lui Noe’ – O reconstruire moderna ne dezvaluie plauzibilitatea supravietuirii lui Noe si familiei lui in timpul Potopului care a schimbat lumea. The fountains of the great deep:

Izvoarele adancului celui mare – 1 of 5

Izvoarele adancului celui mare – 2 of 5

Izvoarele adancului celui mare – 3 of 5

Izvoarele adancului celui mare – 4 of 5

Izvoarele adancului celui mare – 5 of 5

Ben Witherington – The truth structure of reality and a poem

From Ben Witherington’s ‘Bible and Culture’ blog at

Have you ever noticed that there is a truth structure to reality itself?  What do I mean by this?  Well consider what happens when you tell a lie.  Go ahead, admit it, you’ve done that before.   What happens when the lie is challenged?  Well then you are confronted again with the truth of the matter and you have a choice either to admit the lie, orrrrrr  you have to make up another lie.   ‘Oh what a subtle web we weave….’ and indeed when you start weaving a web of lies and deceits, you have to keep going and try to be consistent with your previous lie, because there are always flaws with lies.  Lies, like the prince of lies, cannot stand the light of day and real scrutiny.  ‘Be sure your sins will find you out’.   Whereas when you tell the truth,  you don’t need to keep imaginatively inventing things, one story after another, one excuse after another.   The truth really does set you free, in so many ways,  free from having to cover things up, free from having to go on lying, freedom from having to live a lie.  One of the saddest truths about fallen human beings and lying is that after a while, a person is so enmeshed in their own web of lies, they begin to believe them, themselves.  Deception turns into self-deception, and all kinds of self-justification and rationalization.   But life was not meant to be this way at all.

Remember the story of the Garden of Eden, which turned out to be the Garden of Evil?  The down-fall began with a little lie, indeed as Jesus was to call it later ‘THE lie’— it was subtle, it was more of an insinuation than a frontal attack on the truth—- ‘did God really say?’   But in fact God had not prohibited eating from every tree in the garden, only one.   And the path from insinuation to a bold-faced lie is a short one— ‘you will not die’  lisps the snake.  The father of lies would make God out to be the liar.

An awful lot of discussion about sin forgets entirely that the most primal sin is lying.  Whether it is a little white lie, or a lie the size of an elephant, it is still a lie.  And any lie is a denial of God’s existence, not merely of his truth.  There is a reason why Jesus says  ‘I am the truth’.   If you want to be a saved person, then you have to face not merely truth in the abstract, you have to face the truth about yourself.   And the truth about ourselves is not entirely pretty.  There is something serpentine about us as fallen persons.  Like a snake that crawls along the ground, we are earthbound, though there is heaven in our hearts and dreams.   There is a reason why children aren’t named Judas in our culture, indeed probably a reason why really major sports teams don’t want to call themselves the ’serpents’.   Shoot, they will even call themselves the ‘fighting okra’ instead of that (check out Delta State U.).    There is a p.r. problem with the name ‘Judas’ or ’snakes’.  And part of it is that we realize deep down that there is something wrong with lying, which in part is a realization that there is something wrong with ourselves.

The truth structure of reality is such that it can be rather unforgiving.  I mean it is true that if you jump off a 10 story building with no parachute you will not merely experience a heavy bit of gravity, you will likely crash land. And it will hurt. Pain, as C. S Lewis once said is God’s megaphone reminding us we are living against the truth structure of reality.  God structured into reality accountability for words and deeds, at least in the long run.

There are always consequences to lies,  not the least of which is when you cry wolf too often and there is no wolf, you develop an air of unbelievability. No one trusts you.  And that brings us back to ground zero— truth.    Trust is grounded in truth and honesty.  Love is grounded in trust which is grounded in truth and honesty.  You cannot unconditionally love someone you don’t totally trust.   You may ‘lust them’  but you can’t totally love them.  And trust always presupposes that truth in reality structure—- always.    A relationship not based in truth cannot last ultimately.  The reason we call it true love is because it is a love based in truth and honesty and loyalty and devotion.  True love is not blind love because it always wants the best for the other person, wants them to be their best selves, their true selves.

Have you ever taken a lie detector test?  I did once, and I learned something about myself, namely I need to be more careful in what I say, and hew as closely as I can to what I know of the truth.   Of course you can pass a human lie detector test simply by being honest, and not necessarily telling ‘THE truth’  only telling honestly what you believe to be the truth.   But when it comes to God’s lie detector test,  the bar is raised considerably.   God does not accept an approximation of the truth, he wants the truth, the whole truth, and nothing  but the truth.  So much does he want that, that he has sent us the Holy Spirit as a constant early warning and internal warning system to remind us of the truth, especially the truth about ourselves, which often is painful.

And then there is the whole deal about the moment of truth, the crisis moment, when we have a chance to be our best selves.      Here is a little poem to meditate on, on that subject.    And while you are reflecting on that,  I would just say—- despite all the psychological literature that urges us to ‘be who we are’   and ‘be true to ourselves’  the Bible doesn’t really agree.  We are to be who God intends us to be, created in his image, and modeling his character, and above all we can only be true to our best selves, when we are true to God.  It is not enough to be honest with God, we have to be tried and true.  God doesn’t just want our honest selves,  though that’s a good start, he wants our true selves,  being conformed to the image of his Son, Jesus.  Are you suffering from some truth decay?   We all do from time to time, which is why we always need reminders about the truth, and how it sets us free to be all He wants us to be.


It sneaks up on you unawares
While you are preoccupied
It catches you quite unprepared
Enthralled as you are in your pride.
Blindsided, you flinch instinctively
When suddenly you are accosted
You realize in an instance ‘it’s now…’
Or else you’ve totally lost it.
All those years of pure preparation
All those long times of careful thought
Have arrived at this destination
So why do you feel you are caught?
Shocked by the sudden challenge
Your defensive reflex, a surprise
Call up the ‘the hope that’s within you’
And look them right in the eyes.
Like fumbling with keys in the doorway,
You find you’re at a loss for words,
Why suddenly this ineptitude
Your nervousness seems absurd.
And there is no graceful exit,
No quiet bowing out
No way to delay the inevitable
You’re in the ring, no doubt.
‘Speak now, or else forever
Forever hold your peace’,
The questioner is insistent
She seeks some sort of release.
When the moment of truth is upon you
And you have no time to prepare
Will you know what to say in that instant
Will you find out how much you care?
Will you call on the Spirit for guidance
Will you ask that the cup might pass
Will you be alarmed by your feeling
That the moment is here at last?
Will you feel like a total coward
A child without his homework
Will the force of the question flatten you
Will you turn your head with a jerk.
Will you say ‘I don’t know him’
Will you deny him multiple times,
Will you say ‘I must be leaving’
When recognized, turn on a dime?
When all your learning fails you
And all your bravado too,
When you have no cup of courage
And you don’t know what to do,
Will the moment of truth unmask you
And reveal the imposter inside,
Are you really his true disciple,
Or are you just along for the ride?
In the moment of truth you find out
Just exactly where you are,
Either someone whole-heartedly committed
Or someone who hasn’t gone that far.
Are you flirting with being his follower
Without fully embracing his grace
And when the road gets bumpy
Are you wanting out of the race?
The moment of truth reveals all,
It gives you a progress report
As to whether the truth is within you
Or is it still something you court?
But the moment of truth need not define you
It’s not a final exam,
Even Peter’s denials didn’t end things,
“It need not decide who I am”
And when you see another failing
Fumbling, falling down,
Don’t turn away in scorn,
It could be you on the ground.
But for the grace of God,
We all would come up short
When the moment of truth comes calling,
Christian faith is no spectator sport.

Think Hard, Stay Humble: The Life of the Mind and the Peril of Pride – Francis Chan at Desiring God 2010 National Conference Video

The preaching is extremely powerful at about the 20th minute when Francis Chan starts talking about his anguish for unbelievers.

FEREASTRA (via B a r z i l a i – e n – D a n)

O oglinda prin o postare – potrivita uneori …

(primita prin E_Mail) O pereche recent casatorita s-a mutat intr-un cartier foarte linistit.

In prima dimineata din noua casa, in timp ce isi savurau cafeaua, femeia observa, privind pe fereastra, o vecina care isi intindea cearsafurile in balcon. „- Ce cearsafuri murdare isi intinde vecina nostra in balcon…! Cred ca are nevoie de un nou sapun. Poate ar trebui sa o invat sa-si spele cearsafurile”, zise femeia.

Sotul ei privi si ramase tacut. Si asa, la fiecare doua sau trei zile, femeia isi repeta observatile, in timp ce vecina isi intindea rufele la soare. Dupa o luna femeia ramase surprinsa vazand ca vecina isi intindea cearsafuri mult mai curate, si ii spuse sotului ei:

„- Priveste, a invatat sa spele rufele! O fi invatand-o alta vecina?”

Sotul ei ii raspunse:
“- Nu, azi m-am trezit mai de dimineata si am spalat geamurile casei noastre!”

Si in viata este la fel. Totul depinde de curatenia ferestrei sufletului nostru prin care observam faptele. Inainte de a critica, potrivit ar fi sa ne verificam si sa ne curatam sufletul pentru a putea vedea clar puritatea sufleteasca a celor ce ne inconjoara.

“Daca stai sa-i judeci pe oameni, nu mai ai timp să-i și iubesti”

via B a r z i l a i – e n – D a n

Church History -Jan Hus (1369-1415) – predecessor to the Protestant movement of the 16th century (video)

(from Below – a 55 minute movie based on the life of Jan Hus, immediately followed by a 30 minute documentary (from the Christian History Institute) on the life of Jan Hus.

Jan Hus (1369-1415)

was a Czech priest, philosopher, reformer, and master at Charles University in Prague.

He is famed for having been burned at the stake for heresy against the doctrines of the Catholic Church, including those on ecclesiology (the branch of theology concerned with the nature, constitution and functions of a church), the Eucharist (the Christian sacrament commemorating the Last Supper by consecrating bread and wine), and other theological topics. Hus was a key predecessor to the Protestant movement of the 16th century, and his teachings had a strong influence on the states of Europe, most immediately in the approval for the existence of a reformist Bohemian religious denomination, and, more than a century later, on Martin Luther himself.

Between 1420 and 1431, the Hussite forces defeated five consecutive papal crusades against followers of Hus. Their defense and rebellion against Roman Catholics became known as the Hussite Wars.

The following biography information provides basic facts and information about the life and history of Jan Hus a famous Medieval character of the Middle Ages:

  • Nationality: Czechoslovakian
  • Also Known as: Johann or John Hussinetz, Johannes de Hussinetz or Huss
  • Lifespan: 1370 – 1415
  • Time Reference: Lived during the reigns of the English Kings – King Richard II, King Henry IV and King Henry V
  • Date of Birth: He was born in 1390 in was born at Hussinetz in Southern Bohemia
  • Early Life and Education: He studied at Prague and was an early follower of Stanislaus of Znaim
  • Career Timeline of Jan Hus:
    • In 1400 he was ordained priest
    • In 1401 he became a Dean
    • In 1402 Jan Hus became a rector and preacher of the Bethlehem Church in Prague
    • 1402 – Jan Hus was influenced by the theological writings and ideas of John Wycliffe
    • Hus began to attack the views of clerics
    • Jan Hus became the rector of Prague University and was received at court
    • In 1410 the Pope issued a decree against the ideas of John Wycliffe which were banned
    • Jan Hus continued to preach about the new ideas – his followers were called the Hussites, but was forced to leave Prague
    • 1414 – Three Bishops were appointed to investigate Jan Hus
    • He was imprisoned by Archbishop of Constance at his castle on the Rhine
    • 1415 Jan Hus was sent to trial and convicted as a heretic
    • He was sentence to burning at the stake
    • Jan Hus refused to recant and the terrible sentence was carried out
  • Date of Death: Jan Hus died on July 6, 1415
  • Accomplishments or why Jan Hus was famous: A cleric and religious reformer in Czechoslovakia who attracted followers called the Hussites. He was a follower of the English reformer John Wycliffe
  • Prophecy and Jan Hus Quote: “In 100 years, God will raise up a man whose calls for reform cannot be suppressed.”
    • Nearly 100 years later, in 1517, Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses of Contention on to the church door at Wittenberg

John Wycliffe – o scurta biografie

Biografia lui John Wycliffe de la ViataVesnica.Ro:
John Wycliffe, care a trăit în timpul domniei regelui Edward III, în 1372, a fost profesor la Universitatea din Oxford. Într-o vreme în care doar puţini oameni s-au bucurat de educaţie, Wycliffe a fost cunoscut pentru erudiţia sa în filozofie şi religie.În această perioadă creştinismul era într-o situaţie tristă. Deşi toată lumea cunoştea numele Cristos, putini îi înţelegeu învăţătura. Credinţa, mângâierea, folosul Legii,lucrările lui Cristos, slăbiciunea omenească, Duhul Sfânt, puterea păcatului, lucrările harului, mântuirea prin credinţă si libertatea creştinului nu au fost pomenite niciodată în Biserică. În schimb, Biserica era preocupată doar de ceremoniile vizibile şi tradiţiile omeneşti. Oamenii îşi petreceau toată viaţa îngrămădind ceremonie după ceremonie în dorinţa de a căpăta mântuirea, fără să ştie că o puteau primi doar cerând-o. Oamenii simplii, needucaţi, care nu cunoşteau Scriptura, se mulţumeau să cunoască ce le spuneau pastorii, iar aceştia erau preocupaţi să îi înveţe doar lucrurile venite de la Roma, majoritatea învăţăturilor fiind date spre folosul propriului lor ordin şi nu pentru slava lui Cristos.Văzând că Evanghelia lui Cristos este pângărită de greşeli şi invenţii ale acestor episcopi şi călugări, s-a hotărât să facă tot ce-i stă în putere ca să schimbe situaţia şi să-i înveţe pe oameni adevărul. S-a luptat mult ca să declare în mod public faptul că intenţia sa era doar să scape Biserica de idolatrie, mai ales în ceea ce priveşte sacrementele şi împărtăşania.

Image via Wikipedia

Acest lucru a înfuriat desigur pe călugări, ale căror ordine au devenit avute în urma câştigurilor intrate din oficierea cereminiilor şi plata serviciilor lor. În curând preoţii şi episcopii s-au alăturat nemulţumiţilor, urmaţi de arhiepiscopul Simon Sudbury, care a întrerupt salarizarea lui Wycliffe şi i-a poruncit să nu mai predice împotriva Bisericii. Când nici măcar acest lucru nu s-a dovedit eficient, arhiepiscopul a apelat la Papă. Însa Wycliffe a continuat să-şi expună gândurile în predicile adresate poporului; regele Edwar purta simpatie faţă de predicile sale dar s-a putut bucura şi de spijinil unor nobili ca John de Gaunt, Ducele de Lancaster, fiul regelui şi Lordul Henry Percy.

Învaţăturile lui Wycliffe pot fi sumarizate în următoarele puncte, preluate din predicile sale:

– Sfânta euharistie, după rugăciunea de consacrare, nu este chiar trupul lui Cristos;

– Biserica Romei nu este mai importantă decât orice altă Biserică, şi lui Petru nu i-a fost dată mai multă putere de către Cristos decât altor apostoli;

– Papa nu are mai multă putere decât orice alt preot;

– Evanghelia este suficientă fiecărui om, fără alte reguli adăugate de oameni şi fără adăugiri la Evanghelie;

– Nici Papa şi nici o altă faţă bisericească nu are puterea sau dreptul de a pedepsi pe păcătoşi.

În 1377 i s-a ordonat lui Wycliffe să apară în faţa episcopilor săi şi să răspundă acuzaţiilor aduse de aceştia, din moment ce el a continuat să predice despre aceste lucruri deşi i se interzisese. Wycliffe s-a înfăţişat înaintea lor în ziua de joi, 19 februarie 1377, însoţit de patru călugări învăţaţi, Ducele de Lancaster şi Lordul Henry Percy, care era Lord Mareşalul Angliei.

Catedrala Sf.Pavel a fost înconjurată de o mare mulţime care s-a adunat ca să ajungă la Capela Doamnei Noastre, unde autorităţile bisericeşti erau în aşteptare. După câteva minute, Ducele de Lencaster şi lordul Percy s-au implicat într-o discuţie fierbinte cu episcopul, cu privire la Wycliffe, dacă el ar trebui să stea în picioare sau să şadă în timpul audierilor. În curând cearta a lăsat loc ameninţărilor, toţi cei prezenţi s-au alăturat grupurilor antagoniste şi conciliul a trebuit să fie dizolvet încă înainte e ora 9. Wycliffe a scăpat astfel de pedeapsa pentru cazurile sale. În curând a murit regele Edward III şi tronul a fost ocupat de nepotul său, Richard al II-lea. Ducele de Lancaster şi Lordul Percy au renunţat la slujbele lor guvernamentale şi s-au retras din viaţa publică, dar Wycliffe încă se putea bucura de sprijinul multor nobili. În 1377 Papa Grigorie a trimis un mesaj la Universitatea din Oxford, în care o mustra pentru că a lăsat ca învăţăturile lui Wycliffe să prindă rădăcină şi cerea ca Wycliffe să fie redus la tăcere. Acest lucru l-a încurajat pe arhiepiscopul de Canterbury şi pe elţi episcopi, care s-au hotărât să se întâlnească şi să cadă de acord asupra modului în care va fi pedepsit Wycliffe.

În ziua în care acesta urma să fie audiat, un bărbat pe nume Lewis Clifford, care era un membru al Curţii, fără însă a avea prea multă putere, s-a dus la episcopi şi i-a avertizat foarte serios să nu îl condamne sub nici o formă pe Wycliffe. Episcopii au fost atât de uluiţi de această cerere încât nu au luat nici o atitudine împotriva lui Wycliffe în acea zi.

Secta lui (oamenii neaprobati de regele Angliei si episcopii Bisericii Anglicane) a început să creasca în ciuda opoziţiei Bisericii. Unele persoane autoritare de le Oxford au încercat să îl facă să tacă, alţii l-au sprijinit cât au putut, iar Biserica [Catolica] l-a declarat eretic şi i-a ameninţat pe partizanii lui cu excomunicarea. O perioadă de timp Wycliffe ori a stat exilat, ori a stat ascuns, dar s-a întors în parohia sa înainte de a muri in 1384.

În 1415 Sinodul de la Constanz l-a declarat eretic notoriu pe Wycliffe, care a murit în erezia sa [anti Catolica] şi s-a dispus mutarea oaselor sale din pamântul sfinţit. În 1425 ramaşiţele sale au fost deshumate, oasele i-au fost arse si aruncate în râu, Cuvântul lui Dumnezeu şi adevărul învăţăturii lui John Wycliffe nu vor fii nimicite niciodată.

Deşi regele Richard s-a lăsat influenţat de Papa Urban şi Papa Bonifaciu IX si a publicat câteva decrete împotriva doctrinelor protestante, nu exista nici o mărturie ca cineva să fi fost condamnat la moarte pentru doctrine în timpul domniei sale.

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