Archive for April 2015

Thinking about the Iran Deal

Apr 25th, 2015 | By

President Obama, the government of Iran, and other major nations including Britain, France and Russia, recently announced a framework for a deal to slow down Iran’s nuclear program and remove the sanctions that have somewhat crippled the Iranian economy. That it is controversial is an understatement. Even after it was announced, there was evident disagreement between Iran and the US over when and how the sanctions would be removed and over details about inspections and verification as the agreement is implemented. This is astonishing in its own right because the announcement is only about a framework; the specific details about implementing the framework are yet to be negotiated and this is to be completed by 30 June 2015.



1 Thessalonians 5:12-18

Apr 23rd, 2015 | By

We discuss Paul’s practical instructions for supporting church leaders & interacting with others, plus gives 3 commands for personal holiness.



The New Intolerance and Religious Liberty

Apr 18th, 2015 | By

In 1993, the US Congress passed and President Bill Clinton signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). Since the Supreme Court ruled in 1997 that the RFRA applied only to the federal government, some 20 states since then have passed their own RFRAs. Another dozen states have adopted RFRA-style protections in other ways. Probably the most important invocation of an RFRA, in a federal case, was Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, which reached the Supreme Court last year. Recently Indiana passed its own RFRA, which has created a firestorm. The law establishes that the state “may not substantially burden” a person’s free exercise of religion unless “it is essential to further a compelling governmental interest” and “the least restrictive means” of doing so.



1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Apr 16th, 2015 | By

Paul reminds the Thessalonians about the coming “Day of The Lord,” and explains how this can be a time of blessing & salvation, or that of judgement & wrath. To be “prepared” is the simple act of accepting the gospel of Christ.



The Waning U.S. Influence in Asia

Apr 11th, 2015 | By

Since World War II, three major international financial institutions have facilitated (and dominated) the world’s investment in development opportunities in roads, airports and other infrastructure issues throughout Asia (and much of the world)—the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank. The leadership of these organizations has been restricted to Europeans, Americans and Japanese; China has been excluded. But China has the world’s largest foreign reserves (an estimated $4 trillion) and is quite eager to invest these reserves overseas.



1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

Apr 10th, 2015 | By

Paul describes how Christ will fulfill His promise to come back for His people. Dr. Eckman discusses Biblical truth for this coming event, including details for the resurrection of the dead.



Why the Definition of Marriage Matters

Apr 4th, 2015 | By

On 17 March 2015, the Presbyterian Church (USA) [PCUSA] voted to change the definition of marriage within the PCUSA constitution to include same-sex marriage. The language of the constitution was changed from “a man and a woman” to “two people, traditionally a man and a woman.” The PCUSA thus joins other denominations/religious associations that permit their clergy to perform same-sex marriages: the Episcopal Church, the United Church of Christ, the Quakers, and the Unitarian Universalist Association of Churches, and both Reform and Conservative Judaism.