I mentioned in my last newsletter how the BBC was ‘singing the praises’ of Charles Darwin and his [still] theory of Evolution. I happened to catch coverage of a March debate in the House of Lords the aim of which was also to extol the praises and merits of Darwin and Evolution. One Lord Harries of Pentregarth, the former Anglican Bishop of Oxford, took the opportunity to magnify the supposed scientific basis of Evolution in contrast to those misguided Christians who still believe in Creation as outlined in God’s Word. Back in my June 2002 newsletter I quoted the following about this then Bishop – Dr Richard Harries, the Bishop of Oxford said on Radio 4’s Thought for the Day ‘It is therefore quite extraordinary that 140 years later, after so much evidence has accumulated, a school in Gateshead is opposing evolutionary theory on alleged biblical grounds. Do some people really think that the worldwide scientific community is engaged in a massive conspiracy to hoodwink the rest of us’? The reality is that he is being used by a certain malevolent source to hoodwink people. Paul refers to him and his ilk in 2nd Corinthians 11:13-14 “such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light”. Evolution has also been a ‘godsend’ to outright atheists – see page 3. Meantime let us all, as we are given opportunity, take our stand for our Creator God.
For most of the past year large swathes of the world have been engulfed by what has come to be known as the ‘credit crunch’. Supposedly prosperous nations in Asia, Australasia, Western Europe, the British Isles and North America have been brought financially to their knees. Some of these in times past would have been viewed as bastions of Christianity but they have been found to be not only virtually financially bankrupt but also to be spiritually bankrupt. In Deuteronomy 8:19-20 God issued a warning to His people as they were making their way to the Promised Land – “And it shall be, if thou do at all forget the Lord thy God, and walk after other gods, and serve them, and worship them, I testify against you this day, that ye shall surely perish…because ye would not be obedient unto the voice of the Lord your God”. The finances of many nations have been destroyed by corruption in high places – and so it has also been with their spiritual resources – they too have been corrupted. Much of this newsletter brings to light some sources of such present-day and popular corruption. May God be pleased to give His people discernment to preserve and prosper a faithful spiritual heritage amongst the nations that will bring true glory to Him, for that surely is one genuine biblical purpose that God has for His redeemed people.
Some years ago a local politician who was closely identified with one of the leading terrorist groups involved in what came to be known here as ‘the troubles’ famously said in a speech during a period of ceasefire – ‘they haven’t gone away you know’. He was stating plainly that although the terrorists were at that stage ‘lying low’ they had the capability to at any time restart their murderous campaign. In many ways Satan’s deceptions are like that – they rage and war against God’s truth for a period of time and then they appear to have ‘blown themselves out’ but the reality is very different, they are really just biding their time to perhaps re-invent themselves and then re-emerge with renewed devastating deceptive force. In the 1990’s 2 diabolical deceptions were the Canadian so-called ‘Toronto Blessing’ that was followed by the Florida based so-called ‘Pensacola Revival’. Attempts are being made to revive interest in them and present them as ‘moves of the Holy Spirit – a good example being the ‘Toronto’ articles in the April 2008 ‘Directions’ magazine of the Elim grouping (the front cover spread of this was also given over to the social/ecumenical HOPE ’08 initiative). Locally, one sister in Christ, after having sought information resigned from her church as it was attempting to rekindle Toronto-like activity. Again in Florida, this time in Lakeland, great claims are being made for manifestations at meetings hosted by Todd Bentley – this has all the makings of a rerun of the Pensacola deception. It was indicated to me that Todd Bentley may be lining up a visit to the UK – all I can say in relation to this and any attempt to revive ‘Toronto’ is “Take Heed”.
The quotation that I gave in our December newsletter from the article at the front of our gift Study Bible provoked some very favourable feedback and also stirred memories of some lines that tell of how God’s Word is like an anvil that over the centuries has resisted the hammers of error. These lines, written by someone unknown [but not to God] go as follows –
Last eve I passed beside a blacksmith’s door and heard the anvil ring the vesper chime:Then looking in, I saw upon the floor old hammers, worn with beating years of time.“How many anvils have you had,” said I, “to wear and batter all these hammers so?”“Just one,” said he, and then, with twinkling eye, “the anvil wears the hammers out,you know.”And so, thought I, the anvil of God’s word, for ages sceptic blows have beat upon;Yet though the noise of falling blows was heard, the anvil is unharmed . . .the hammer’s gone.One friend also shared these lines from the front of her father’s Bible –Prove all things by the Word of God….all ministers, all teaching, all preaching,all opinions, all practices — prove all by the Word of God.Measure all by the measure of the Bible. Test all in the crucible of the Bible.That which can abide the fire of the Bible receive, hold, believe and obey.That which cannot abide the fire of the Bible, reject, refuse,repudiate and cast away.
If professing Christians were more knowledgeable of ‘the anvil’ and used it to “prove all things” there would a lot less need for the cry of ‘Take Heed’ to go up. But the need is still there and so we do value your love and support of us.
In the latter part of 2006 one of the best selling books, worldwide, was ’The God Delusion’ by Professor Richard Dawkins. On his official website we read – ”Richard Dawkins is the Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford, a position he has held since 1995…With rigor and wit, Richard Dawkins examines God in all his forms…The God Delusion makes a compelling case that belief in God is not just wrong, but potentially deadly”.
A review of the book in the Daily Telegraph of 8 October 2006 by Kenan Malik, entitled ‘Why I don’t believe in Richard Dawkins’ stated “Dawkins is Britain’s most famous atheist and in The God Delusion he gives eloquent vent to his uncompromising views…Dawkins’s polemic against the need for religion is compelling, even if the arguments are not particularly new…So great is his loathing for religion that it sometimes overwhelms his reasoned argument…Part of the problem is Dawkins’s view that religion is not so much a set of beliefs as a mental illness. And moreover, a mental illness to which evolution has made the human mind particularly susceptible”.
It was recently drawn to my attention by a Christian friend that I was ‘listed’ on the ‘WHO IS WHO’ page of a website dedicated to promoting Darwinian Evolution and to refuting Biblical creation. I went to the website in question and downloaded the following about the organisation.
About the British Centre for Science Education
What is the BCSE?
The British Centre for Science Education is a single issue pressure group dedicated solely to keeping creationism and intelligent design out of the science classroom in publicly-funded schools in the United Kingdom.
Who is behind the BCSE?
BCSE is a co-operative, with a formal constitution, of like-minded people. It is run by a committee elected by its members
If ever a visit was providentially ordered then it was that of Roger Oakland. As you will know from the leaflet enclosure with our March newsletter Roger was here from 10-24 March and during that time he delivered 21 talks. The feedback has been positive and encouraging as the following extract from one email will demonstrate.
Dear Mr Andrews Just a short email to say how much I was blessed with the visit of Roger Oakland to the WORD Bible class last Saturday night. It was good to learn more about creation and to watch out for false teaching that can happen so easily…Thanks again and keep up the good work PMcW