Friday, September 28, 2012

A Most Unusual Surgery


A surgeon named Dr. Kane searched for a candidate to undergo surgery so he could prove that appendectomies could be done under local anesthetic. At last, a patient was found, who was prepared for surgery and wheeled into the operating room. A local anesthetic was applied, leaving the patient able to talk and respond as the surgery progressed.
           
As he had done hundreds of times, Dr. Kane located the appendix, skillfully removed it, and finished the surgery. During the operation, the patient complained only of minor discomfort. He was taken to a hospital room, recovered quickly, and was dismissed two days later. Dr. Kane had demonstrated that local anesthesia was a viable and sometimes preferable alternative, thanks to the willingness of a brave volunteer.
           
What I did not tell you was that the courageous volunteer for surgery by Dr. Kane—was Dr. Kane. He had performed surgery on himself and removed his own appendix! (The Voice of the Village, July/August 1996) 
               
Sometimes the surgery you need the most can only be performed by yourself, on yourself. Ephesians 4:31 (HCSB) says, “All bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander must be removed from you, along with all malice." No one else can remove your anger and bitterness for you. You have to remove it yourself. Today is the day that you are scheduled to perform self-surgery, to remove bitterness from your heart.

"Lord, I choose to forgive (the person) who hurt me because I know you died for that sin. Forgive me for my sin of refusing to forgive. Right now, I am removing this cancer from my heart. I choose to let it go and move on with my life. Thank you for setting me free!" 

Follow me on Twitter @KentCrockett  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Was Jesus Married?


The picture on the left is a recently published fragment of a fourth century Coptic manuscript which supposedly quotes Jesus saying that He had a wife. Of course, the Bible doesn’t teach this, so how do you explain its existence?  People living today write some crazy things, and so did people back then. Just because a fragment of a manuscript was discovered doesn’t make it true.

The first thing that jumps out is how messy it is, with letters written over other letters. The Scriptures were revered as sacred and would have never been written like this. They were carefully copied by scribes and if a mistake was made, the copy was destroyed. This fragment was written by someone who was making up a story about Jesus. 

Stephen Emmel, a professor of Coptology at the University of Muenster, questioned whether the document was authentic. "There's something about this fragment in its appearance and also in the grammar of the Coptic that strikes me as being not completely convincing somehow." Alin Suciu, a papyrologist at the University of Hamburg, said, "I would say it's a forgery. The script doesn't look authentic" when compared to other samples of Coptic papyrus script dated to the 4th century.

More than a century after the four Gospels were written, some unknown authors began writing counterfeit gospels, trying to pass them off as Scripture. These counterfeit manuscripts are known as the Gnostic gospels. They are forgeries, fraudulently written using the names of the apostles to give them legitimacy in the early church. 

These other writings were not included in the Bible because they didn't past the tests required to be included in the New Testament. The true Scriptures were written near the time of Christ by the apostles and those who were closely associated with them. These false gospels were written 100-300 years later. In addition, these forgeries are often confusing and make little sense, and clearly are not inspired by the Holy Spirit. The "Gospel of Thomas" was not authored by Thomas the disciple but someone else who lived a century later. The ridiculous verses highlighted below clearly explain why the false writings like the Gospel of Thomas were rejected as part of the Bible.
The Gospel of Thomas

 7 Jesus said, "Lucky is the lion that the human will eat, so that the lion becomes human. And foul is the human that the lion will eat, and the lion still will become human.

8 And he said, "The person is like a wise fisherman who cast his net into the sea and drew it up from the sea full of little fish. Among them the wise fisherman discovered a fine large fish. He threw all the little fish back into the sea, and easily chose the large fish. Anyone here with two good ears had better listen!"

11 Jesus said, "The dead are not alive, and the living will not die. During the days when you ate what is dead, you made it come alive. When you are in the light, what will you do? On the day when you were one, you became two. But when you become two, what will you do?"

19 Jesus said, "Congratulations to the one who came into being before coming into being. If you become my disciples and pay attention to my sayings, these stones will serve you.

21 Mary said to Jesus, "What are your disciples like?" He said, "They are like little children living in a field that is not theirs. When the owners of the field come, they will say, 'Give us back our field.' They take off their clothes in front of them in order to give it back to them, and they return their field to them."

22 Jesus said to them, "When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter [the kingdom]."

33 Jesus said, "What you will hear in your ear, in the other ear proclaim from your rooftops."

The above verses seem to have been written by someone who was trying to make fun of Christianity. Now do you understand why the Gnostic Gospels were not included in the Bible? So the next time you hear of "lost gospels" being discovered, remember that they were only written to deceive and confuse people.

Follow me on Twitter @KentCrockett  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com  

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Worried and Bothered


When Jesus and His disciples arrived in Bethany, Martha invited them into her home. Jesus goes into the other room and starts teaching, but Martha rushes into the kitchen and starts hurriedly preparing a meal for the crew. She’s running around the kitchen gathering ingredients, and it really bothers her that her sister Mary hasn’t lifted one finger to help her. Instead, Mary followed Jesus to the other room to listen to Him.

Let's think about this. God in a human body is sitting in her living room, revealing truths hidden from the beginning of time, but Martha is too busy to listen!  Meanwhile, Mary is taking in every word. Finally, Martha can’t take it anymore. She stomps into the living room, interrupts the Bible study, and tells Jesus to follow her orders. She says, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me." (Luke 10:40)

Martha is expecting Jesus to say, “Martha, you are so right! Doesn’t anyone here remember my teachings on being a servant? Take a look at my servant, Martha. Mary, you could learn a few things from her. Are you just trying to get out of work? Go help Martha set the table!” Instead of saying that, Jesus says something no one was expecting. "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part.” (Luke 10:41-42).

Martha was “worried and bothered.” Worry is the fear of every bad thing that might happen in the future. Being bothered means everyone and everything gets on your nerves. Does that describe you? What are you worried about?  What annoys you and gets on your nerves? The problem is not with the other people, but with you. Something is wrong inside your heart.

Martha was worried and bothered “about so many things.” That means Martha was constantly living stressed-out.  She was always worried about the future. She was continually bothered by the little things others did. As a result, she wasn't enjoying life. Her priorities were totally out of whack.

Jesus told her, “Only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part.” What was Mary doing that He wants us to see? It is so profoundly simple that it's simply profound. She made Jesus her highest priority. She hungered to hear what He had to say. And then she obeyed and followed His instructions. So if you were in the house that day, which one would you be like? Martha or Mary?

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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Dented Cans


While grocery shopping with her father, Janet picked up the last can of peaches on the shelf. She noticed the can was dented, so she put it back.
"Why'd you put it back?" her father asked.
"Because the can has a dent in it."
"The container doesn’t look good, but the peaches inside are fine," he said. "Don’t judge what’s on the inside by how the outside appears."

First Samuel 16:7 says, "For God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." Have you ever rejected someone because they weren’t physically attractive? It’s easy to forget that an eternal soul is living inside that body. On the outside, that individual looks like a dented can, but Jesus sees that person as someone He died for. In God's eyes, the homeless person lying in the gutter is worth every bit as much as the most admired movie star who just won the Oscar.

Your assignment today is to view everyone you encounter, not according to their attractiveness, but as a person who will exist forever in eternity. Paul said, “Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer” (2 Cor. 5:16).

Follow me on Twitter @KentCrockett  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com