Welcome to tomthinking.com Thursday, April 19 2018 @ 05:47 PM UTC

My Father My Regret

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Today, December 29th, is my biological father's birthday. He would have been 77. My father, Tom Olhausen, died in 2007 of emphysema. I haven't written about him since his death, but I think of him often. Knowing this day was coming, I've been thinking about him all month.

My father was a bad man. He was a criminal. He abandoned his children. He was a true narcissist. In a lawsuit he was party to in Miami the presiding judge referred to my father as, "A known miscreant." For some reason, when I read it, that description of him broke my heart. I am the son of a miscreant.

Creation Wasn't A Miracle: A Perspective On The Appearance Of Age

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I recently joined a Facebook group that explores evidences for creationism. The group is composed of members with many different views on creationism, but the two most vocal are Young Earth Creationism (YEC) and Old Earth Creationism (OEC).

The debates that take place are often acrimonious and based upon simplistic understandings of science and theology. In one such thread there was a discussion of God’s creative acts which, to put it simply, states that because God does miracles that are instant (healing the deaf, blind, and lame), then the creation of the universe was also instant or did not take a long period of time, as in millions or billions of years. Advocates of this view associate the miracles in the Old and New Testaments with God’s creative acts in Genesis 1, to make the case that God didn’t create over millions or billions of years. The creation of the universe is therefore deemed a miracle because it happened quickly. It could not be a miracle if it took millions of years. YEC advocates generally agree that creation has the appearance of age, but is actually young—in the 6,000 to 10,000 year range. OEC advocates say that the universe is ancient and looks old for no other reason than it really is old.

Why Should Atheists Consider Theism?

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Why should an atheist consider theism?

In Theism there is evidence.

Christianity is not a philosophy or a belief system without historical roots. Everything that a person is asked to believe about Jesus Christ is founded upon the evidences of witnesses. The Bible never asks a person to "Just have faith" without evidence to back it up. Jesus never asked anyone to believe in him without evidence. Evidence gives belief in Jesus its strength.

In Theism there is purpose.

Why Science Can Help Us Understand The Bible

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I recently joined a group on Facebook that discusses scientific evidences for creation. While the purpose of the group is discussion about how the natural world points to a Creator for all things, very often the group is engaged in heated discussions over young-earth and old-earth creationism. The debates can be heated, and even have a lot of venom, which is tragic. But there is one argument presented against scientific influence in Bible interpretation that I’d like to address. First, let me set up the position that is often taken against allowing science to interpret biblical discovery. The position is often stated that the person who uses science to guide or influence biblical interpretation is adding to the biblical text or allowing science to interpret scripture rather than scripture interpreting scripture. I have no doubt that the person or persons who hold such an opinion desire to trust and believe the Bible as the final authority on the Christian life. I actually admire people who hold the scripture in such high regard. However, there is a problem with this rule imposed on biblical interpretation. It forgets that we use a variety of extra-biblical disciplines to arrive at theological meaning all of the time, without regarding it as improper. For instance, we use the following extra-biblical sources to help us arrive at interpretation and meaning from scripture:

Five Truths About You & Satan

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Have you ever had an encounter with Satan himself? As far as I know, I have not. This is because, to put it bluntly, I don't rate that high. The chances are, you've never encountered Satan either. I say that because of a little passage in the book of Luke. Jesus had just finished 40 days of fasting in the desert with Satan trying to tempt him. It reads, "When the devil had finished every temptation, he left Him until an opportune time" (Luke 4:13).

The phrase to notice here contains two words, "Opportune time." It implies that there were many times where opposing Jesus was not opportune. In fact, I'd like to share five important truths about Satan and your relationship to him, from this passage.

Whether It's Tump or Hillary: Honor the Emperor

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How do you feel about President Obama?

What I see online and on Facebook: scumbag, ass, imbecile, idiot, complete moron, #$%^& traitor, etc.

Sometimes Christian conservatives repost what others say. Regardless if it’s a repost or something original, is this appropriate for Christians conservatives?

Bible Contradictions: Works & The Works Of The Law

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Why does the Bible contradict itself when Paul says we are not justified by works, but James says we are justified by works?

First, we must define what the writers mean by their use of the word, "Works." Paul and James actually use the word in a different way and in a different context than a cursory reading might reveal. In Galatians 2:16 Paul states, "Man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus." Here, an in all of the Pauline passages about justification by faith and not works, Paul is referring to the, "Works of the law." This is a reference to the Mosaic Law of the Old Testament. God gave Israel the law as a guide to their national identity.

It Won't Get As Bad As You Think

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I've never seen a more contentious election cycle in my short life as I'm seeing right now. Perhaps you feel the same way. As a Christian conservative I have great concerns for the future of America. I want to see our nation turn to God with a whole heart, weep over its sin, and humble itself in repentance. And being a Christian for nearly 33 years, knowing the history in the Bible, and always learning about the world, I know that its not presidents and lawmakers that bring about a nation's turnaround. Certainly, our leaders may have a hand in the legal things, as they should, but ultimately a country stands or falls on its culture, on it's worldview, on it's basic values and beliefs. It is from these foundational things that our politics spring.

Our Godly Heritage and The Political Expediency of Christians

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Why does the Christian Conservative engage in politics? To put it simply, to return America to its godly heritage. There is only one problem with this lofty motive. Godliness is never established through politics. "The anger of man does not establish the righteousness of God" (James 1:20).