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Easter: A case for the resurrection of Jesus

first_imgShare on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Please enter your comment! Support conservation and fish with NEW Florida specialty license plate I have been reading about the faithful followers of Jesus around the world, who have subjected themselves to the agony and brutal pain of the re-creation of Jesus being nailed to the cross, his lashings, the crown of thorns placed upon his head to show the world their faith. Photos of the pain on their faces they endure, as the cross is lifted up into the air, and put into place, with crowds watching and some making photos on their smart phones. In Spain, and Manila, Phillipines. I think I would pass out at the sight of actual nails being driven into someone’s palms and feet, and being lashed with a whip that cuts into their flesh. I can only imagine the incredible pain Jesus mother felt as she saw her son being treated that way and condemned to die a slow painful death as she stood their not being able to stop it. To me, it makes me think none of us are worthy of Jesus’s love for us, as to how he suffered, but he does love us, even as imperfect as we are, because we are the children of God, no matter how old we are, and Jesus sincerely forgives us and grants us an eternal wonderful life, if only we believe in him. So little to ask……. Inspiration   Free webinar for job seekers on best interview answers, hosted by Goodwill June 11 by Scott Sauls, Christ Presbyterian Church Jesus didn’t stutter when he said that he is the truth:“I am the way, and the truth, and the life,” he said, “no one comes to the Father except through me (John 14:6).”Why did Jesus claim to be the truth, versus one single truth among many other truths? Why did he say that he would not share his glory with any other God or any other religious leader? Why was he unwilling to accept the mere designation of Rabbi or of a good moral teacher or of an exemplary human being? Furthermore, why do his followers seem stuck on the idea that Jesus, in being the truth, is the singular path to God? CS Lewis, a secular atheist intellect turned Christian, answers this question as well as anyone in Mere Christianity:“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”But what is it, exactly, that has made Lewis so certain that Jesus is more than a great human teacher, but is instead the Son of God, the Word who has become flesh, the Incarnate Deity? I believe the answer to this question rests in a single word:Resurrection.Jesus, who was crucified, dead, and buried, rose again bodily from the dead.The man Saul of Tarsus was militantly opposed to the Christian religion and a leader in the first-century massacre against the followers of Jesus. Yet, Saul of Tarsus later became a follower of Jesus. The turning point occurred for Saul when he was on his way to Damascus to arrest more Christians. Jesus, having risen from the dead, met him on the road, temporarily blinded him, and asked him a question, “Saul, why do you persecute me?”The message to Saul was clear. In standing against Christians, he was standing against Christ, the risen Messiah. And in standing against Christ, the risen Messiah, he was standing against the truth.In an instant, Saul, once a big shot among the Jews, became small in his own eyes. Saul, a great teacher, and leader was at a loss for words.Instead of striking Saul down, Jesus forgave him.From that point forward, Saul of Tarsus was also Paul the Apostle, the inspired writer of approximately one-third of the New Testament. He later wrote these words:“I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly and in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life (1 Timothy 1:12-16).”How did Paul know that his words were “trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance?” How did Paul know that his belief in Jesus was a belief in the truth versus a belief in one of several legitimate, competing “truths?”He knew his words were trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance because Christ had risen from the dead. Because Christ had risen from the dead—a claim that cannot be made by any other religious founder or leader. And if Christ has risen from the dead, everything else that Jesus said and did can be accepted as true.But what if the resurrection of Jesus is actually not true? What if it is a myth? What if in the end, it turns out to be a cleverly made up hoax?If it is a hoax, Christians are the most pitiful people in the world.Paul wrote to the Corinthian church:“If the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most of all to be pitied. But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:17-20).”In fact…Christ has been raised.How can we be so sure? As Simon Greenleaf, distinguished professor of law at Harvard discovered, the evidence is overwhelming. Based on the evidence alone, it takes more faith not to believe that Jesus rose from the dead than it takes faith to believe it.As the Apostle Peter once wrote, “We did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty (2 Peter 1:16).Eyewitnesses. Of his majesty.What was eyewitness evidence to Jesus’ resurrection so convincing to the likes of Simon Greenleaf? There are several excellent books that have been written on the subject, including Who Moved the Stone? by an English journalist attorney named Frank Morrison. Also, The Case for Christ and The Case for Faith by Lee Strobel, More Than a Carpenter and Evidence That Demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell, and Tim Keller’s The Reason for God are excellent, more detailed treatments of the subject.It may be helpful to highlight a few of these so-called “evidences.”One such evidence is the Apostle Paul’s undisputed claim that there were over five hundred, real-time eyewitnesses to the resurrection of Christ in the first century, “most of whom (were) still alive” (1 Corinthians 15:3-11). Another evidence is the historical record of how each of the twelve disciples of Jesus died. Judas, the one false disciple, hanged himself over guilt related to his betrayal of Jesus. Ten of the others died as martyrs because of their unwillingness to recant their Christian faith to show ultimate allegiance to the Roman Caesar. The disciple John, exiled to the island of Patmos for the same unwillingness to recant, died of old age as a prisoner for Jesus. With this historic record in mind, Josh McDowell wrote the following in More Than a Carpenter:“If the Resurrection had not happened, obviously the disciples would have known it. I can find no way that these particular men could have been deceived. Therefore they not only would have died for a lie—here’s the catch—they would have known it was a lie. It would be hard to find a group of men anywhere in history who would die for a lie if they knew it was a lie.”Other evidence for Christianity includes the countless lives over the centuries that have been changed. In a candid interview about his Christian faith, Bono issued a challenge to his skeptical interviewer with these words:Either Christ was who He said He was the Messiah or a complete nutcase. I mean, we’re talking nutcase on the level of Charles Manson…This man was strapping himself to a bomb, and had “King of the Jews” on his head, and, as they were putting him up on the Cross, was going: OK, martyrdom, here we go. Bring on the pain! I can take it. I’m not joking here. The idea that the entire course of civilization for over half of the globe could have its fate changed and turned upside-down by a nutcase, for me, that’s farfetched.Bono’s point is that the best case for Christianity is the lives that have been changed by Jesus.Liars becoming more honest, crooks returning what they have stolen, anxious and dying people finding peace, cowardly and fearful people finding courage, hurtful people asking forgiveness from those they have hurt, bodies wasting away as the souls who inhabit those bodies become more alive, business people doing the less profitable thing because it is the right thing, aimless people finding meaning in their lives, spouses staying committed to each other through the hard and dry seasons, addicts becoming sober, adulterers becoming chaste, pregnant mothers continuing their pregnancies knowing that they are carrying a child with Down Syndrome, rejected and unappreciated parents persisting in unconditional love toward their straying, entitled children. These are only a few examples of how Jesus Christ changes people.The same power that Christians believe spoke the galaxies into being, that parted the ocean, that caused a blind man to see, that enabled a paralytic to get up and walk, and that raised Jesus from the dead—accounts for the billions of people who, having been brought into relationship with Jesus, have become better versions of themselves. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17).Perhaps you have been turned off to Christianity because of intellectual roadblocks. Perhaps, like Francis Schaeffer, you have been turned off by a “lack of reality” that you perceive in the lives and behavior of Christians around you.Amid your questions, doubts, and disappointments, are there any Christians in your life who have shown you glimpses of something different, something more beautiful and lovely, even something admirable? Have you ever seen in Christians something that gave you pause about your doubts, that led you to consider that perhaps there is something to this Jesus character? Something like forgiveness of a hurt, compassion shown to a sufferer, generosity toward someone in need, or perseverance in a hard marriage?If so, could this be Jesus reaching out to you, inviting you to consider, or perhaps reconsider, his claims?If there are no such Christians in your life and if there is no such longing, would you consider, as the Harvard student Jordan Monge did, investigating “the works of the masters” such as Augustine, Anselm, Aquinas, Descartes, Kant, Pascal, and Lewis? Better yet, would you consider reading through each of the four “Jesus biographies” in the Bible—the Gospels according to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—each written from the perspective of a first-century believer whose life had been made new by the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus?If you are not ready to open yourself to the possibility that Jesus is the truth, would you consider embarking on the journey that Simon Greenleaf once did? Would you accept the challenge, as he did, of attempting to prove that it is false?Perhaps in your quest to prove Christianity to be false, you might discover, as Greenleaf and Francis Schaeffer did, that there is only one reason to be a Christian: because it’s true. 1 COMMENT You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here April 16, 2017 at 9:26 pm Please enter your name here Reply LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply TAGSEaster Previous articleGuns & Hoses pits police officers against firefightersNext articleThe Easter bunny? Not! A tale of raisins gone bad Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Mama Mia The Anatomy of Fear last_img read more

Four netizens get jail sentences on lèse-majesté charges

first_img Follow the news on Oman December 27, 2016 Find out more RSF_en Organisation Read in Arabic (بالعربية) News Read in Arabic (بالعربية)Reporters Without Borders is dismayed to learn that a Muscat court passed jail sentences on four bloggers and online activists on 9 July on charges of insulting and defaming Sultan Qaboos bin Said. Three were given one-year sentences. The fourth was got six months.“On the pretext of punishing allegedly defamatory comments, the sultanate’s justice system is stifling dissent by urging its citizens to express their opinions in a ‘legal’ manner and in accordance with the ‘legal definition’ of free speech, which seems to leave little room for freedom of expression,” Reporters Without Borders said.“We call for this verdict to be overturned on appeal and we urge the authorities to end their abusive prosecutions of dissidents, who are just exercising their right to impart and receive news and information.”Hamoud Al-Rashdi, a writer, was sentenced to six months in prison and a fine of 200 rials (425 euros) for publicly insulting the sultan. The other three – the poet Hamad Al-Kharousi, the poet and activist Mahmoud Al-Rawahi and the activist Ali Al-Mikbali– were sentenced to a year in prison and a fine of 200 rials for insulting and defaming the sultan online.According to Muscat Daily, Rashdi was convicted under article 126 of the Criminal Law, which punishes “defaming His Majesty the Sultan or his authority publicly,” while the others were convicted under this article and articles 16 and 19 of the Cybercrime Law. Article 16 punishes using the Internet or other technological methods to defame, insult or invade privacy. Article 19 punishes using the Internet to spread or promote attacks on religious values or threats to public order.All four were released on bail of 1,000 rials (2,130 euros) pending the outcome of their appeal, which is due to be heard in September.Their convictions follow a wave of arrests in June and are part of a government campaign against netizens who are demanding political reforms.Rashdi and Kharousi were arrested on 8 June, on the same day as several other bloggers and writers who are still being held without being officially charged. According to a source close to the case, not all of them have been able to see a lawyer.The Dublin-based Front Line Defenders said it was thought that Al-Rashdi was arrested for carrying a banner critical of the authorities and that Al-Kharousi was arrested for writing a poem critical of the sultan.Al-Mikbali was arrested on 9 June for comments he had posted online, while Al-Rawahi was arrested two days later during a sit-in. Al-Rawahy is also charged – along with around 20 other activists – with participating in an illegal demonstration. The verdict is due on 22 July.The public prosecutor’s office issued a statement on 13 June deploring an increase in insulting and defamatory comments and calls for demonstrations and strikes. They were incompatible with the values and ethics of Omani society and the principle of free speech, and could threaten public order and the national interest, it said.The statement went on to announce that the main instigators had been arrested. An investigation would be carried out in accordance with legal procedures and those responsible would be brought to trial. The attorney-general’s office would continue to ensure respect for the laws and the rules of good conduct, it added.——-12.06.12 – Wave of arrests aims to stifle political and social protests Reporters Without Borders condemns the wave of arrests aimed at Omani bloggers since the end of May.“We are concerned about the crackdown on Oman’s bloggers aimed at silencing the protest movement that has resurfaced in the sultanate, as well as its websites,” the press freedom organization said.“We deplore the illegal and random nature of these arrests. We ask the authorities to release the bloggers immediately and unconditionally and to call a halt to arbitrary arrests.”The blogger Esmaeel al-Meqbali, a member of the Oman Group for Human Rights, together with two other activists, Habiba al-Hinai and Yaqoub al-Kharusi, were arrested on 31 May on their way to the Fohoud oilfield in the Omani desert, to check on conditions of oilfield workers on strike since May 24. When they appeared in court on 4 June, the prosecutor accused them of “inciting the crowd” to demonstrate against the government. Al-Hinai and al-Kharusi were released the same day but al-Meqbali was ordered to be held for a further week. He is reported to have gone on hunger strike.The blogger and activist Eshaq Al-Aghbari was arrested on 4 June. He became famous during protests in Oman in February last year, when he was placed in detention for several days. Two days later, it was the turn of Khalfan Al-Badwawi, an engineer and blogger who was one of the organizers of protests in the Western Sahara in 2011. Like the three activists arrested on 31 May, neither al-Aghbari nor al-Badwawi has been allowed to see their lawyers.Another wave of arrests took place on 8 June. Several writers and bloggers were held by the Special Department of the Omani police, including bloggers Nabhan Al-Hinshi and Hassan Al-Raqishi, the writer Humood Al-Rashdi, the poet Hamad Al-Kharousi and two poets and activists, Ali Al-Saedi and Ali Al-Hajji. All these arrests took place after a statement on 4 June by the attorney-general who spoke of “the recent increase in defamatory statements and calls for sedition by some people under the guise of freedom of expression” and expressed his intention to “take all necessary legal action against those uttering, circulating, encouraging or contributing to them”.The threat comes at a time when demands for political reform are growing on social networks, in parallel with calls for the release of the first three activists detained. According to various Omani websites, the bloggers and writers were believed to have been arrested for views they had expressed online. However, as with the other detainees, the charges against them are not known. In the last post on his blog on 5 June, al-Hinshi deplored the first wave or arrests and criticized the attorney-general’s statement.Lawyer Bassma Mubarak al-Kayoumi was quoted in the newspaper Gulf News as saying she believed the arrests violated several articles of the law which, among other things, stipulate that no one can be arrested without being given a reason and an arrested person “has the right to call whomever needs to be alerted about the arrest to provide assistance within the confines of the law”.Following the protests and demonstrations that shook the country last year, Sultan Qaboos announced some reforms in an attempt to quell popular discontent. Omanis are still waiting for these reforms to be carried out, which partly explains the revival of the protests. October 18, 2016 Find out more Appeal court lifts ban on daily, but confirms jail for two journalists OmanMiddle East – North Africa Newscenter_img News November 25, 2016 Find out more Oman: Court postpones verdict of “Azamn” journalists, in a trial held below international standards, according to trial observation report to go further Receive email alerts Help by sharing this information Joint letter to the Sultan of Oman on the right of press freedom and the targeting of journalists and human rights defenders News OmanMiddle East – North Africa July 13, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Four netizens get jail sentences on lèse-majesté chargeslast_img read more

Last Group of Second Course of INS Vikramaditya Crew Completes Training at Sevmash

first_imgBack to overview,Home naval-today Last Group of Second Course of INS Vikramaditya Crew Completes Training at Sevmash View post tag: Navy Training & Education View post tag: Naval View post tag: Vikramaditya View post tag: completes View post tag: crew View post tag: Second View post tag: Sevmash April 2, 2012 View post tag: Group Last Group of Second Course of INS Vikramaditya Crew Completes Training at Sevmash View post tag: last View post tag: News by topic The last group of the second course (7-th group, engineering department staff) received diplomas on March 28.According to the ship’s repair and modernization contract, Russia must train Indian mariners who are to serve on the carrier.As was reported by press service of JSC Sevmash, first 152-men course trained in Russia since March 14 till Nov 4, 2011. Second course (112 men) started training on Sept 1, 2011. Indian servicemen had been studying theory for 4 months in the Kuznetsov Naval Academy (St. Petersburg) and arrived in Severodvinsk on Jan 1, 2012.Among attendants of the graduation ceremony were chief of observation group Mr. Shrinivas, head of Sevmash training center Viktor Pustovalov, director of production training group Nikolai Zhirkov, and top specialist of state-led corporation Rostehnologii Stanislav Klimanov. All of them wished Indian sailors safe return home and reminded they would visit Russia again to pass shipboard practice.Trainees of the 3-rd and the largest (405 men) course are preparing to study theory. They will arrive in St. Petersburg late in April, reports Sevmash‘s press service.[mappress]Naval Today Staff , April 02, 2012; Image: sevmash Share this article View post tag: Training View post tag: INS View post tag: courselast_img read more