Posts from the ‘truth’ Category

The Search for Truth and the Prejudice of the Heart

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The empirical question we can ask ourselves is this ;
“Do I really want to know the truth?”

But do we know ourselves?

Are we aware that the integrity of the mind can be easily compromised by that which the heart refuses to believe?

The answer to these questions can free us from self imposed restrictions to living life to the fullest now and can lead us to full assurance for all our tomorrows.

The intellect is most often subject to that which we desire to be true and false.

That is the prejudice of the heart.
We often consider something to be true or false based on more than intelligence.

So there must be a component in making the case for truth that appeals to our inner hunger for more than that which is tangible.

The message must contain resonance with our longings and then corresponding claims that cohere with reason.

Is it any wonder then that God initiates a relationship with us through an act of love?

He paid for our sins on the cross because He loves us.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. “
(John 3 :16)

His act of love is directed towards our hearts.

” With the heart man believes and is saved, by the mouth confession is made unto salvation. ” (Romans 10 :10)

When we come to truth we come to a relationship with Jesus, who says to us;
“I am the way the truth and the life. No man comes to the Father but by Me.”

True Christianity is a relationship that satisfies the deepest longings of the heart and the biggest questions of man’s intelligence.

When we believe and ask Christ to save us, we ultimately come to a person and a relationship with the personage of Jesus Christ.

Do you want to know the Truth ?
He is truth, and He is waiting for you.

Desire to Know Truth No Matter Where It Leads You

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My wife and I were sitting in the office of a marriage counselor as he gave us an, “interview”.

We had hit the proverbial bump in the road and had just agreed to seek counseling after two months of separation.

I asked the counselor what purpose an interview with him would serve towards the reconciliation of our marriage.
He told me the purpose of the interview was to determine if the two of us sincerely wanted to know the truth about our relationship with one another, and how to mend it, and whether or not he was willing to be our marriage counselor.

I was shocked.

He continued to tell us how most people don’t really want to know the truth in regard to what is wrong with their marriage.

“I estimate about 90 percent of the people who come to me for help don’t really want to know the truth about what’s wrong and how to fix it,” he said.

That was twenty years ago and I still remember the feeling of shock I had at the thought that most of us, more often than not, are reluctant to know the truth even when our very lives depend on it.

Yes, it has been tough at times. But we’re still married after 37 years.
And we owe a great debt of gratitude to a counselor who dared to be painfully honest with us even though we could have easily been offended and walked out of the office that day.

We have learned a great lesson;

The truth is often hard to take, but is always best for us.
We should always follow the truth no matter where it leads us.

C. S. Lewis reflected on his conversion to Christianity in a similar way in his book, “Surprised by Joy”.

“You must picture me alone in that room in Magdalen, night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England.”
~C.S.Lewis~

Consider what Jesus said in regards to the truth ;

And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
(John 8:32 NKJV)

“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
(John 14:6 NKJV)

The truth is that we all need Jesus as Savior before this life ends, reluctant as we may be to accept that He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

Follow Jesus.

Lost in Translation – Hebrews 4:2- The Essence of Believing the Bible – Faith or Intellect ?

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“For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.”
(Heb 4:2 NKJV)

18 inches is approximately the distance between the human heart and head.

It has been described as the longest distance we will ever travel.

And in the twenty first century western humanity is suffering from a pandemic of decapitation between our hearts and heads.

That is why this verse was very important to understanding the supremacy of faith in relation to how we grasp God’s truths from the Bible.

I remember how this scripture impacted me when I first realized that I was accustomed to filtering truth from error by intellect alone!

But God lives above this realm we live in. He created the natural realm with all it entails,but He is not subject to the laws of nature, for God is Supernatural.

Even our minds stumble at the thought of the miraculous.
But what is miraculous to us is quite simple to God.

Indeed, it is pure intellectual contempt and out right denial to even judge the possibility of the existence of an all powerful God by the laws of the natural realm that a true God could transcend in the first place.

God’s truths transcend the laws of logic and reason, just as God’s limitless power transcends the laws of physics ,nature and science in general.

All our science, truth, and natural laws coincide with God’s and even point back to Him as the single source of everything, but even science has repeatedly hit it’s head against the undeniable fact of the miraculous in all disciplines of nature from DNA to the Cosmos.

Our greatest science has only yielded greater questions that repeatedly defy scientific explanations and can only be explained by a transcendent miraculous being, the same being known for eons as God,Yahweh, Jehovah.

In light of the possibility of existence of a miraculous being, miracles make perfect sense.

Why has this verse been changed in so many new translations when it’s truth is so vitally important and needed?

The ESV, NIV 2011, and many others have caved to evolutionary science influences and a general Christlessness that has permeated western Christianity.

This can only attributed to the continued downward slide of western Christianity into the prophetic apostasy of the last days before Christ’s return.

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
(2Tim 3:1-4 NKJV)

Christ Centered Teaching hopes to serve as a reminder to both this teacher and all seekers of truth that Christ alone is the source of all truth, the way to live.
Jesus is the life everlasting, and the only way to an eternal destiny of all we ever sought and hoped for.

Jesus Christ is the Divine God, Creator, Saviour, and Lover of Lost Souls who died for them, was buried and in three days He rose in victory over death. He gives eternal life to all who believe by faith and ask Him to come into their hearts.

Christ fills those hearts to overflowing.

Simply ask and by FAITH receive the gift of eternal life from the all knowing , all powerful, miraculous Lover of our souls.

Christ is more than words can describe, but I will continue to try to give readers a glimpse of who He is, but the one absolutely essential ingredient in knowing Jesus Christ is faith.

Without faith we cannot know Him or hope to know God.
With faith, we become family of God.

Life, Creation and Wisdom – We See So Little of All That Really Is

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Men look up into the sky at night and marvel in wonder at the sheer number of stars and the vastness of the universe.

Yet with our most sophisticated telescopes today we can see that far more is actually there  than the unaided eye can see.

The voids of blackness begin to fill in with the light of discoveries previously unknown.

You may then realize that in a similar way that you can never know it all.

But rest assured you CAN know the one who does know it all, and He calls each of the heavenly host by name.

He is God, and has also promised;

as it is written:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,

Nor have entered into the heart of man

The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

(I Corinthians 2:9)

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed;

blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” 

(John 20:29)

Biblical Content in the Context of Biblical Emphasis is Our Biblical Imperative

Christ's Resurection from Death

Most of what Christians communicate has Biblical content. Subjects like predestination, grace,love,unity, God’s sovereignty are all typical examples of Biblical Content.

But any time we communicate Biblical Content but neglect Biblical Emphasis, we violate Biblical imperative.

What is Biblical Imperative?

“That in all things, Christ might be preeminent.”

“I am determined to know nothing except Christ and Him crucified.”

To put it another way,

Jesus said,”I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man comes to the Father but by Me.”

The entirety of Christianity begins with the redemption of mankind.
Jesus is the only way to the Father, He is the only truth that leads us to the Father, He is the only life we can obtain with the Father, for we are all already dead in trespasses and sins.

Even discipleship means nothing without Christ.

“I am the Vine and you are the branches, without Me you can do nothing.”

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Preacher.
What could you possibly have to say that would have more meaning or relevance aside from Jesus Christ ?

God’s Love is Unconditional but A Relationship with God is Conditional – All Close Relationships Come With Conditions

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We are saved by Grace. We know this as God’s unconditional  and unmerited love.

Some very wise people question, “How can God’s love be unconditional if I will be sent to Hell for all eternity if I reject Christ as my Savior.”

The answer is found in the realization of understanding the difference between God’s unconditional love to us,

(God so loved the World)

Christ’s having satisfied those conditions for us,

(That He gave His only  Son)

and our having met the only condition for the restoration of a relationship with God.

(that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.)

 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

God personally settled the condition for us to be restored to a relationship to Him.

He took responsibility for our debt on Himself.

All He asks is that we freely receive His offer.

He will also allow us to reject Him, 

But we must then accept responsibility for that decision

ourselves.

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The following link is to a half hour audio on this subject.

I gave it my own title because the audio actually covers a lot of theological ground , but covered this subject well here.

God’s Love is Unconditional but A Relationship with God is Conditional – All Close Relationships Come With Conditions.

“WHAT ANSWER FOR THE WICKED HUMAN HEART, PART 1 OF 2”

In this audio, the speaker reveals how he is often invited to speak with some of the world’s richest and most influential people.

On one occasion, the speaker was invited to go on a private yacht owned by a very wealthy man who had recently come to Christ through attending an event.

 Before the speaking event, this man told the speaker that he only came to fulfill a promise to his own wife that he would be there.

Ravi then told the man that having fulfilled his promise to be there, he could leave at any time while he is speaking if he chooses, and that would be okay.

Instead, the man accepted Christ as his Savior at the event.

This man then invited many of his own friends, and the speaker, to a private yacht cruise along the coast of Sicily.(perhaps in hope they would find new life in Christ as well).

This audio tells of a man on that cruise who also became a Christian when he finally understood true love and relationships all have conditions for them to exist.

Yacht

Yacht (Photo credit: WaterpoloSam)

Born the Way God Intended – A Scientific Examination of Homosexuality and the Futile Search for a Biological Cause

Immanuel

“He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created.”
(Genesis 5:2)
Dear friends,
No claim clearly stated in the Bible has ever been disproved, or ever will be. The science that supports God as Creator is always right, solid , and withstands testing.
The Theory of evolution,”Darwinism”, is erroding as the result of research centering on DNA ,”genetics”, archeological research, and more.
The same latest research is eroding the false assumption that Homosexuality is biological in origin.
Oddly enough, most articles that claim evidence for a developmental stage hormonal link will also rely heavily on evolutionary theory, and natural instincts of  animal species as evidence.
Bad science coupled to more bad science does not make good science.
Most articles on this subject will not provide credible resources to support their claims.
Most will not provide any support for their claims beyond vague references.
Don’t let public schools teach your children that being gay is natural.
 I believe society has many issues that will only become worse as we continue to mis-diagnose the sexual and psychological roots of homosexual behavior.
There is definitely a phycological issue, but also a growing sexual issue as more people see sex purely as a means of pleasure and escape, much as with a substance addiction.
Society is not even considering what we could become if we are wrong about homosexuality, and society is wrong.
What nature truly makes obvious about the difference between boys and girls is also supported by science,
and the Bible.
Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
(John 8:32)

The following article is written from the scientific standpoint. All claims are heavily supported by

solid,credible scientific research.

Any suppositions are stated as such.

A complete List of supporting references are provided at the end of this reprint.

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“This Is The Way God Made Me”

A Scientific Examination of Homosexuality 
and the “Gay Gene”

Brad Harrub, Ph.D. and Bert Thompson, Ph.D. and Dave Miller, Ph.D.
© 2003  Apologetics Press, Inc.  All Rights Reserved.
Reproduced by Permission from Apologetics Press, Inc.

he trumpets were left at home and the parades were canceled.  The press releases and campaign signs were quietly forgotten.  The news was big, but it did not contain what some had hoped for.  On April 14, 2003, the International Human Genome Consortium announced the successful completion of the Human Genome Project—two years ahead of schedule.  The press report read: “The human genome is complete and the Human Genome Project is over” (see “Human Genome Report…,” 2003, emp. added).  Most of the major science journals reported on the progress in the field of genetics, but also speculated on how the information would now be used.  The one piece of information that never materialized from the Human Genome Project was the identification of the so-called “gay gene.”Homosexuality has been practiced for thousands of years.  Simply put, homosexuality is defined as sexual relations between like genders (i.e., two males or two females).  It was Sigmund Freud who first postulated that parental relationships with a child ultimately determine the youngster’s sexual orientation.  But this “nurturing” aspect has effectively given way to the “nature” side of the equation.  Can some behaviors (e.g., alcoholism, homosexuality, schizophrenia) be explained by genetics?  Are these and other behaviors influenced by nature or by nurture?  Are they inborn or learned?  Some individuals believed that the answer would be found hiding amidst the chromosomes analyzed in the Human Genome Project.The human X and Y chromosomes (the two “sex” chromosomes) have been completely sequenced.  Thanks to work carried out by labs all across the globe, we know that the X chromosome contains 153 million base pairs, and harbors a total of 1168 genes (see NCBI, 2004).  The National Center for Biotechnology Information reports that the Y chromosome—which is much smaller—contains “only” 50 million base pairs, and is estimated to contain a mere 251 genes.  Educational institutions such as Baylor University, the Max Planck Institute, the Sanger Institute, Washington University in St. Louis, and others have spent countless hours and millions of research dollars analyzing these unique chromosomes.  As the data began to pour in, they allowed scientists to construct gene maps—using actual sequences from the Human Genome Project.  And yet, neither the map for the X nor the Y chromosome contains any “gay gene.”What is the truth regarding homosexuality?  Too often, speculation, emotions, and politics play a major role in its assessment.  The following is a scientific investigation of human homosexuality. 

Behavioral Genetics and Civil Rights

In an effort to affect public policy and gain acceptance, the assertion often is made that homosexuals deserve equal rights just as other minority groups—and should not be punished for, or forbidden from, expressing their homosexuality.  The fight for the acceptance of homosexuality often is compared to “civil rights” movements of racial minorities.  Due to America’s failure to settle fully the civil rights issue (i.e., full and equal citizenship of racial minorities), social liberals, feminists, and homosexual activists were provided with the perfect “coat tail” to ride to advance their agenda.  Using this camouflage of innate civil liberties, homosexual activists were able to divert attention away from the behavior, and focus it on the “rights.”

The argument goes like this: “Just as a person cannot help being black, female, or Asian, I cannot help being homosexual.  We were all born this way, and as such we should be treated equally.” However, this argument fails to comprehend the true “civil rights” movements.  The law already protects the civil rights of everyone—black, white, male, female, homosexual, or heterosexual.  Homosexuals enjoy the same civil rights everyone else does.  The contention arises when specific laws deprive all citizens of certain behaviors (e.g., sodomy, etc.). We should keep in mind that these laws are the same for all members of society.  Because of certain deprivations, homosexuals feel as though “equal” rights have been taken away (i.e., marriage, tax breaks, etc.).

Skin color and other genetic traits can be traced through inheritance patterns and simple Mendelian genetics.  Homosexuals are identified not by a trait or a gene, but rather by their actions.  Without the action, they would be indistinguishable from all other people.  It is only when they alter their behavior that they become a group that is recognized as being different.  If we were to assume momentarily that homosexuality was genetic, then the most one could conclude is that those individuals were not morally responsible for being homosexual.  However, that does not mean that they are not morally responsible for homosexual actions! Merely having the gene would not force one to carry out the behavior.  For instance, if scientists were able to document that a “rape gene” existed, we certainly would not blame an individual for possessing this gene, but neither would we allow him to act upon that rape disposition.  Neil Risch and his coworkers admitted:

 

There is little disagreement that male homosexual orientation is not a Mendelian trait.  In fact, a priori, one would expect the role of a major gene in male homosexual orientation to be limited because of the strong selective pressures against such a gene.  It is unlikely that a major gene underlying such a common trait could persist over time without an extraordinary counterbalancing mechanism (1993, 262:2064).

Evan S. Balaban, a neurobiologist at the Neurosciences Institute in San Diego, noted that

 

the search for the biological underpinnings of complex human traits has a sorry history of late.  In recent years, researchers and the media have proclaimed the “discovery” of genes linked to alcoholism and mental illness as well as to homosexuality.  None of the claims…has been confirmed (as quoted in Horgan, 1995).

Charles Mann agreed, stating: “Time and time again, scientists have claimed that particular genes or chromosomal regions are associated with behavioral traits, only to withdraw their findings when they were not replicated” (1994, 264:1687).  It appears that the gay gene will be added to this category of unreplicated claims.

The real issue here is homosexual actions that society has deemed immoral and, in many instances, illegal.  Since no study has firmly established an underlying genetic cause for homosexuality, arguments suggesting “equal rights” are both baseless and illogical.

 

Real Statistics

Anyone who has tuned into prime-time television within the past few years has observed an increasing trend of shows featuring characters who are homosexual—and proud of it.  It seems as though modern sitcoms require “token” homosexuals in order to be politically correct.  The perception is that these individuals share the same apartment buildings, offices, clubs, etc., with heterosexual people, and that we need to realize just how prevalent homosexuality is.  So, exactly what fraction of the population do homosexuals actually represent?

The famous Kinsey Institute report often is cited as evidence that 10% of the population is homosexual.  In his book, Is It a Choice?: Answers to 300 of the Most Frequently Asked Questions About Gays and Lesbians, Eric Marcus used the Kinsey studies to demonstrate that one in ten people is homosexual (1993).  In truth, Kinsey never reported figures that high.  The Kinsey Report clearly stated that: “Only about 4 percent of the men [evaluated] were exclusively homosexual throughout their entire lives….  Only 2 or 3 percent of these women were exclusively homosexual their entire lives” (see Reinisch and Beasley, 1990, p. 140).  However, there is good reason to believe that the real percentage is not even this high.

While no one has carried out a door-to-door census, we do have a fairly accurate estimate.  Interestingly, these statistics came to light in an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court on March 26, 2003, in the Lawrence vs. Texas case (commonly known as the Texas sodomy case).  On page 16 of this legal brief, footnote 42 revealed that 31 homosexual and pro-homosexual groups admitted the following:

 

The most widely accepted study of sexual practices in the United States is the National Health and Social Life Survey (NHSLS).  The NHSLS found that 2.8% of the male, and 1.4% of the female population identify themselves as gay, lesbian, or bisexual (Laumann, et al., 1994).

The study also found that only 0.9% of men and 0.4% of women reported having only same-sex partners since age 18—a figure that would represent a total of only 1.4 million Americans as homosexual (based on the last census report, showing roughly 292 million people living in America).  The resulting accurate figures demonstrate that significantly less than one percent of the American population claims to be homosexual.  The NHSLS results are similar to a survey conducted by the Minnesota Adolescent Health Survey (1986) of public school students.  The survey showed that only 0.6% of the boys and 0.2% of the girls identified themselves as “mostly or 100% homosexual.”

The 2000 census sheds even more light on the subject.  The overall statistics from the 2000 Census Bureau revealed:

  • The total population of the U.S. is 285,230,516.
  • The total number of households in the U.S. is 106,741,426.
  • The total number of unmarried same-sex households is 601,209.

Thus, out of a population of 106,741,426 households, homosexuals represent 0.42% of those households.  That is less than one half of one percent!

But since most people are not mathematicians, we would like to make this point in a way that most individuals will be able to better comprehend.  If we were to start a new television sitcom, and wanted to accurately portray homosexual ratios in society, we would need 199 heterosexual actors before we finally introduced one homosexual actor.

And yet modern television casts of three or four often include one or more homosexual actor(s).  The statistics from the 2000 census are not figures grabbed from the air and placed on a political sign or Web site to promote a particular agenda.  These were census data that were carefully collected from the entireUnited States population, contrary to the limited scope of studies designed to show a genetic cause for homosexuality.

 

Is Homosexuality Genetic?

It is one of the most explosive topics in society today.  The social and political ramifications affect the very roots of this country.  But is the country being told the truth concerning homosexuality?  Is there really a genetic basis for homosexuality?

Former democratic presidential candidate and Vermont Governor Howard Dean signed a bill legalizing civil unions for homosexuals in Vermont.  In defending his actions, he commented: “The overwhelming evidence is that there is a very significant, substantial genetic component to it.  From a religious point of view, if God had thought homosexuality is a sin, he would not have created gay people” (as quoted in VandeHei, 2004).  Dean is not alone in such thinking.

Homosexual Population Pie ChartMost people are familiar with the idea that research has been performed that allegedly supports the existence of a gay gene.  However, that idea has been a long time in the making.  Almost fifty years ago, the landmark Kinsey report was produced using the sexual histories of thousands of Americans.  While that report consisted of a diverse sample, it was not a representative sample of the general population (Kinsey, et al., 1948, 1953).  In 1994, Richard Friedman and Jennifer Downey published a review on homosexuality in The New England Journal of Medicine.  In reviewing Kinsey’s work, they noted:

 

Kinsey reported that 8 percent of men and 4 percent of women were exclusively homosexual for a period of at least three years during adulthood.  Four percent of men and 2 percent of women were exclusively homosexual after adolescence (1994, 331:923).

With this “statistical information” in hand, some sought to change the way homosexuality was viewed by both the public and the medical community.  Prior to 1973, homosexuality appeared in theDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the official reference book used by the American Psychiatric Association for diagnosing mental disorders in America and throughout much of the rest of the world.  Homosexuality was considered a sickness that doctors routinely treated.  In 1973, however, it was removed as a sexual disorder, based on the claim that it did not fulfill the “distress and social disability” criteria that were used to define a disorder.  Today, there is no mention of homosexuality in the DSM-IV (aside from a section describing gender identity disorder), indicating that individuals with this condition are not suitable candidates for therapy (see American Psychiatric Association, 2000).

Physicians treating patients for homosexuality (to bring about a change in sexual orientation) frequently are reported to ethics committees in an attempt to have them cease.  Robert Spitzer lamented:

 

Several authors have argued that clinicians who attempt to help their clients change their homosexual orientation are violating professional ethical codes by providing a “treatment” that is ineffective, often harmful, and reinforces in their clients the false belief that homosexuality is a disorder and needs treatment (2003, 32:403).

Thus, the stage was set for the appearance of a “gay gene.”

 

Simon LeVay—Brain Differences

The first “significant” published study that indicated a possible biological role for homosexuality came from Simon LeVay, who was then at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in San Diego, California.  In 1991, Dr. LeVay reported subtle differences between the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men (1991).  LeVay measured a particular region of the brain (the interstitial nuclei of the anterior hypothalamus—INAH) in postmortem tissue of three distinct groups: (1) women; (2) men who were presumed to be heterosexual; (3) and homosexual men.

 

LeVay’s Reported Findings

LeVay reported that clusters of these neurons (INAH) in homosexual men were the same size as clusters in women, both of which were significantly smaller than clusters in heterosexual men.  LeVay reported that the nuclei in INAH 3 were “more than twice as large in the heterosexual men as in the women.  It was also, however, more than twice as large in the heterosexual men as in the homosexual men” (1991, 253:1034).  This difference was interpreted as strong evidence of a biological link to homosexuality.  LeVay’s assumption was that homosexual urges can be biologically based—so long as cluster size is accepted as being genetically determined.

 

Diagram showing INAH area
Diagram showing INAHarea.  LifeART images copyright © 2004 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.  All rights reserved.  Used by permission.

Problems with LeVay’s Study

When looking at the methodology of the LeVay study, one of the key problems is that the study has never been reproduced.  As William Byne noted, LeVay’s work

 

has not been replicated, and human neuroanatomical studies of this kind have a very poor track record for reproducibility.  Indeed, procedures similar to those LeVay used to identify nuclei have previously led researchers astray (1994, 270[5]:53, emp. added).

Additionally, of nineteen homosexual subjects used in the study, all had died of complications of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).  AIDS has been shown to decrease testosterone levels, so it should be expected that those who suffered from that condition would have smaller INAH.  Byne continued his comments on LeVay’s work.

 

His inclusion of a few brains from heterosexual men with AIDS did not adequately address the fact that at the time of death, virtually all men with AIDS have decreased testosterone levels as the result of the disease itself or the side effects of particular treatments.  To date, LeVay has examined the brain of only one gay man who did not die of AIDS (270:53).

Furthermore, in a scientific environment where controls and standards are a necessity, LeVay did not possess a complete medical history of the individuals included in his study.  He therefore was forced toassume the sexual orientation of the non-AIDS victims as being heterosexual, when some may not have been.  In addition, bear in mind that he had no evidence regarding the sexual orientation of the women whose brains he examined.  LeVay has admitted:

 

It’s important to stress what I didn’t find.  I did not prove that homosexuality is genetic, or find a genetic cause for being gay.  I didn’t show that gay men are born that way, the most common mistake people make in interpreting my work.  Nor did I locate a gay center in the brain (as quoted in Byrd, et al., 2001, emp. added).

Many have argued that what LeVay discovered in the brains of those he examined was only a result of prior behavior, not the cause of it.  Mark Breedlove, a researcher at the University of California at Berkeley, has demonstrated that sexual behavior has an effect on the brain.  In referring to his own research, Breedlove commented: “These findings give us proof for what we theoretically know to be the case—that sexual experience can alter the structure of the brain, just as genes can alter it….  [I]t is possible that differences in sexual behavior cause (rather than are caused by) differences in the brain” (as quoted in Byrd, et al., parenthetical item in orig.).  Considering this type of research, it makes sense that a homosexual lifestyle (and/or the AIDS condition) could alter the size of the nuclei LeVay was measuring.

What exactly did LeVay find?  In actuality, not much.  He did observe slight differences between the groups—if you accept the method he used for measuring the size of the neuron clusters (and some researchers do not).  When each individual was considered by himself, there was not a significant difference; only when the individuals involved in the study were considered in groups of homosexuals vs. heterosexuals did differences result.  Hubbard and Wald commented on this lack of difference:

 

Though, on average, the size of the hypothalamic nucleus LeVay considered significant was indeed smaller in the men he identified as homosexual, his published data show that the range of sizes of the individual samples was virtually the same as for the heterosexual men.  That is, the area was larger in some of the homosexuals than in many of the heterosexual men, and smaller in some of the heterosexual men than in many of the homosexuals.  This means that, though the groups showed some difference as groups, there was no way to tell anything about an individual’s sexual orientation by looking at his hypothalamus(1997, pp. 95-96, emp. added).

Being homosexual himself, it is no surprise that LeVay observed: “…[P]eople who think that gays and lesbians are born that way are more likely to support gay rights.” In a Newsweek article, LeVay was quoted as saying, “I felt if I didn’t find any [difference in the hypothalamuses], I would give up a scientific career altogether” (as quoted in Gelman, et al., 1992, p. 49).  Given how (poorly) twisted LeVay’s data are, and his own personal bias, his abandonment of science may have ultimately been of greater service.

 

Brain Plasticity—A Fact Acknowledged by All Neuroscientists

Today, scientists are keenly aware of the fact that the brain is not as “hard-wired” or permanently fixed as once thought—an important factor that LeVay failed to acknowledge.  One of the properties of plastic is flexibility—many containers are made out of plastic so that they will not shatter when dropped.  In a similar manner, the brain was once considered to be rigid, like Ball® jars used for canning—but we now know the brain is “plastic” and flexible, and able to reorganize itself.  Research has shown that the brain is able to remodel its connections and grow larger, according to the specific areas that are most frequently utilized.  Given that we know today that the brain exhibits plasticity, one must ask if the act of living a homosexual lifestyle itself might be responsible for the difference LeVay noted?  Commenting on brain plasticity, Shepherd noted:

 

The inability to generate new neurons might imply that the adult nervous system is a static, “hard-wired” machine.  This is far from the truth.  Although new neurons cannot be generated, each neuron retains the ability to form new processes and new synaptic connections (1994).

Interestingly, since Shepherd’s textbook was published, additional research has even documented the ability of neurons to be generated within certain areas of the brain.  This information must be considered when examining comparative anatomical experiments such as LeVay’s.  These cortical rearrangements that occur are not as simple as unplugging a lamp and plugging it into another socket.  The changes observed by researchers indicate that if the brain were represented by a home electrical system, then many of the wires within the walls would be pulled out, rewired to different connections in different rooms, new outlets would appear, and some would even carry different voltages.  Due to the colossal connectivity that takes place within the brain, any “rewiring” is, by its very nature, going to have an effect on several areas—such as INAH3.  Scientists understand these things, yet LeVay’s work is still mentioned as alleged support for the so-called gay gene.

 

Bailey and Pillard—
The Famous “Twins” Study

One of the most frequently cited studies used in promoting the genetics of sexual orientation is a 1952 study by Kallmann.  In this famous work, he reported a concordance rate (or genetic association) of 100% for sexual orientation among monozygotic (identical) twins (1952, 115:283).  This result, if true, would prove nearly insurmountable for those people who doubt the biological causation of homosexuality.  However, Kallmann subsequently conjectured that this perfect concordance was an artifact, possibly due to the fact that his sample was drawn largely from mentally ill and institutionalized men (see Rainer, et al., 1960, 22:259).  But Kallmann’s research opened the door to twin studies in regard to sexual orientation.

Michael Bailey and Richard Pillard, researchers at Northwestern University and the Boston University School of Medicine, carried out a similar experiment, examining 56 pairs of identical twins, 54 pairs of fraternal twins, 142 non-twin brothers of twins, and 57 pairs of adoptive brothers (1991, 48:1089-1096).  Bailey and Pillard were looking to see if homosexuality was passed on through familial lines, or if one could point to environmental factors as the cause.  Their hypothesis: if homosexuality is an inherited trait, then more twin brothers would be expected to have the same orientation than non-twin or non-biological brothers.

 

Their Reported Findings

  • 52% of identical (monozygotic) twins of homosexual men were homosexual
  • 22% of fraternal (dizygotic) twins were likewise homosexual
  • 11% of adoptive brothers of homosexual men were homosexual
  • 9.2% of non-twin biological siblings reported homosexual orientations (Bailey and Pillard, 1991, “A Genetic Study of Male Sexual Orientation”)
  • 48% of identical twins of homosexual women were likewise homosexual
  • 16% of fraternal (dizygotic) twins were likewise homosexual
  • 6% of adoptive sisters of homosexual women were likewise homosexual (Bailey and Benishay, 1993, “Familial Aggregation of Female Sexual Orientation”)

 

Problems with Bailey and Pillard’s Study

While the authors acknowledged some of the flaws with their research, they still were quoted in Science News as saying: “Our research shows that male sexual orientation is substantially genetic” (as quoted in Bower, 1992, 141:6).  However, the most glaring observation is that clearly not 100% of the identical twins “inherited” homosexuality.  If there was, in fact, a “gay gene,” then all of the identical twins should have reported a homosexual orientation.  And yet, in nearly half of the twins studied, one brother was not homosexual.  In a technical-comment letter in Science, Neil Risch and colleagues pointed out: “The biological brothers and adoptive brothers showed approximately the same rates.  This latter observation suggests that there is no genetic component, but rather an environmental component shared in families” (1993, 262:2063).  In fact, more adoptive brothers shared homosexuality than non-twin biological brothers.  If there was a genetic factor, this result would be counter to the expected trend.  Byne and Parsons noted:

 

However, the concordance rate for homosexuality in nontwin biologic brothers was only 9.2—significantly lower than that required by simple genetic hypothesis, which, on the basis of shared genetic material, would predict similar concordance rates for DZ [dizygotic] twins and nontwin biologic brothers.  Furthermore, the fact that the concordance rates were similar for nontwin biologic brothers (9.2%) and genetically unrelated adoptive brothers (11.0%) is at odds with a simple genetic hypothesis, which would predict a higher concordance rate for biological siblings (1993, 50:229).

A more recently published twin study failed to find similar concordance rates.  King and McDonald studied 46 homosexual men and women who were twins.  The concordance rates that they reported were 10%, or 25% with monozygotic twins—depending on whether or not the bisexuals were included along with the homosexuals.  The rates for dizygotic twins were 8% or 12%, again, depending on whether bisexuals were included (King and McDonald, 1992).  Byne and Parsons commented: “These rates are significantly lower than those reported by Bailey and Pillard; in comparison of the MZ[monozygotic] concordance rate, including bisexuals (25%), with the comparable figure from Bailey and Pillard (52%)” (p. 230).  They went on to observe: “Furthermore, if the concordance rate is similar forMZ and DZ twins, the importance of genetic factors would be considerably less than that suggested by Bailey and Pillard” (p. 230, emp. added).

Another factor that may have had a drastic affect on the results of this study (and other similar studies) centers on methodology.  Bailey and Pillard did not study a random sample of homosexuals.  Instead, the subjects were recruited through advertisements placed in homosexual publications.  This method can be deemed questionable because it is highly dependent on the readership of those publications and on the motives of those who respond.  Thus, it may lead to skewed results—for example, inflated rates of concordance in identical twins owing to preferential participation (see Baron, 1993).  Hubbard and Wald observed:

 

The fact that fraternal twins of gay men were roughly twice as likely to be gay as other biological brothers shows that environmental factors are involved, since fraternal twins are no more similar biologically than are other biological brothers.  If being a fraternal twin exerts an environmental influence, it does not seem surprising that this should be even truer for identical twins, who the world thinks of as “the same” and treats accordingly, and who often share those feelings of sameness (1997, p. 97).

In summarizing their findings, Byne and Parsons stated: “Critical review shows the evidence favoring a biologic theory to be lacking” (50:228).  Commenting on Bailey and Pillard’s report, researchers Billings and Beckwith wrote:

 

While the authors interpreted their findings as evidence for a genetic basis for homosexuality, we think that the data in fact provide strong evidence for the influence of the environment (1993, p. 60).

When evaluated scientifically, twin studies fail to provide any valid support for the longed-for “gay gene.”

 

Dean Hamer—The Gay Gene
on the X Chromosone

Two years after Simon LeVay’s report, a group led by Dean H. Hamer of the National Cancer Institute allegedly linked male homosexuality to a gene on the X chromosome.  His team investigated 114 families of homosexual men.  Hamer and his colleagues collected family history information from 76 gay male individuals and 40 gay brother pairs as they searched for incidences of homosexuality among relatives of gay men.

In many families, gay men had gay relatives through maternal lines.  Thus, they concluded that a gene for homosexuality might be found on the X chromosome, which is passed from the mother alone.  They then used DNA linkage analysis in an effort to find a correlation between inheritance and homosexual orientation.

 

Their Reported Findings

Because many of the families with a prevalence of homosexual relatives had a common set of DNAmarkers on the X chromosome, Hamer’s group assumed a genetic etiology.  Of the 40 pairs of homosexual brothers he analyzed, Hamer found that 33 exhibited a matching DNA region called q28—a gene located at the tip of the long arm of the X chromosome.  In summarizing their findings, Hamer and colleagues noted: “Our experiments suggest that a locus (or loci) related to sexual orientation lies within approximately 4 million base pairs of DNA on the tip of the long arm of the X chromosome” (1993, 261:326, parenthetical item in orig.).  This discovery prompted Hamer and his colleagues to speculate:

 

The linkage to markers on Xq28, the subtelomeric region of the long arm of the sex chromosome, had a multipoint lod score of 4.0, indicating a statistical confidence level of more than 99 percent that at least one subtype of male sexual orientation is genetically influenced (261:321, emp. added).

It is important to note that Hamer did not claim to have found a “gay gene,” or even the set of genes, that might contribute to a propensity for homosexuality.  According to Chicago Tribune staff writer, John Crewdson, what Hamer claimed to have found was “statistical evidence that such genes exist” (1995).

 

Problems with Hamer’s Study

One of the most significant problems with Hamer’s approach is that he and his colleagues did not feel that it was necessary to check whether any of the heterosexual men in these families shared the marker in question!  Would it not be useful to know whether or not this “gay gene” is found in heterosexuals?  Even if only a few of them possess the gene, it calls into question what the gene or the self-identification signifies.  Additionally, Hamer never explained why the other seven pairs of brothers did not display the same genetic marker.  If this is “the gene” for homosexuality, then one must assume all homosexual individuals would possess that particular marker—and yet that was not the case in Hamer’s study.

In a letter to Science, Anne Fausto-Sterling and Evan Balaban pointed out some of the additional problems with Hamer’s study.  They noted:

 

Despite our praise for aspects of Hamer, et al.’s work, we feel it is also important to recognize some of its weaknesses.  The most obvious of these is the lack of an adequate control group.  Their study demonstrates cosegregation of a trait (which Hamer, et al.  have labeled “homosexuality”) with X chromosome markers and the trait’s concordance in homosexual brothers.  This cosegregation is potentially meaningful if the mother is heterozygous for the trait.  In this case, segregating chromosomes without the markers should show up in nonhomosexual brothers, but Hamer, et al present no data to that effect (1993, 261:1257, emp. added).

Fausto-Sterling and Balaban continued:

 

This sensitivity to assumptions about background levels makes Hamer, et al.’s data less robust than the summary in their abstract indicates….  Finally we wish to emphasize a point with which we are sure Hamer, et al would agree: correlation does not necessarily indicate causation (261:1257).

In other words, Hamer’s methodology leaves something to be desired.  One also should keep in mind that Hamer’s sampling was not random, and, as a result, his data may not reflect the real population.

George Rice and his colleagues from Canada looked intently at the gene Xq28.  They then observed: “Allele and halotype sharing for these markers was not increased over expectation.  These results do not support an X-linked gene underlying male homosexuality” (1999, 284:665, emp. added).  Rice, et al., included 182 families in their study.  They noted:

 

It is unclear why our results are so discrepant from Hamer’s original study.  Because our study was larger than that of Hamer et al., we certainly had adequate power to detect a genetic effect as large as was reported in that study.  Nonetheless, our data do not support the presence of a gene of large effect influencing sexual orientation at position Xq28 (284:667).

That is a tactful way of saying that any claims of having found a “gay gene” were overblown, if not outright false, and that Hamer’s results are dubious at best.  Commenting on the study of Rice and his colleagues, Ingrid Wickelgren remarked: “…the Ontario team found that gay brothers were no more likely to share the Xq28 markers than would be expected by chance….  Ebers interprets all these results to mean that the X linkage is all but dead” (1999, 284:571, emp. added).

In June of 1998, University of Chicago psychiatrist Alan Sanders reported at the meeting of the American Psychiatric Association that he, too, had been unable to verify Hamer’s results.  Looking for an increase in Xq28 linkage, Sanders’ team studied 54 pairs of gay brothers.  As Wickelgren indicated, Sanders’ team had found “only a weak hint—that wasn’t statistically significant—of an Xq28 linkage among 54 gay brother pairs” (284:571).  Commenting on the validity of Hamer’s study, Wickelgren quoted George Rice: “Taken together, Rice says, the results ‘suggest that if there is a linkage it’s so weak it’s not important’” (1999, emp. added).  Two independent labs failed to reproduce anything even remotely resembling Hamer’s results.

 

Changeability of Homosexuals—
Evidence Against Genetics

An individual born with diabetes has no hope of changing that condition.  Likewise, a child born with Down’s syndrome will carry that chromosomal abnormality throughout his or her life.  These individuals are a product of the genes they inherited from their parents.  Homosexuality appears to be vastly different.  Many people have been able to successfully change their sexual orientation.  [Truth be told, some individuals experiment with a variety of sexual partners—male/female—often, going back and forth.  One might inquire if the bisexuality denotes the existence of a “bisexual gene?”] Ironically, however, the removal of homosexuality as a designation from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Psychiatric Disorders by the American Psychiatric Association has kept many physicians from attempting to provide reparative therapy to homosexuals.

Robert Spitzer conducted a study on 200 self-selected individuals (143 males, 57 females) in an effort to see if participants could change their sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual (2003, 32:403-417).  He reported some minimal change from homosexual to heterosexual orientation that lasted at least five years (p. 403).  Spitzer observed:

 

The majority of participants gave reports of change from a predominantly or exclusively homosexual orientation before therapy to a predominantly or exclusively heterosexual orientation in the past year (p. 403).

In summarizing his findings, Spitzer declared: “Thus, there is evidence that change in sexual orientation following some form of reparative therapy does occur in some gay men and lesbians.” He thus concluded: “This study provides evidence that some gay men and lesbians are able to also change the core features of sexual orientation” (p. 415).

Six years earlier, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) released the results of a two-year study stating:

 

Before treatment, 68 percent of the respondents perceived themselves as exclusively or almost entirely homosexual, with another 22 percent stating that they were more homosexual than heterosexual.  After treatment, only 13 percent perceived themselves as exclusively or almost entirely homosexual, while 33 percent described themselves as either exclusively or almost entirely heterosexual (see Nicolosi, 2000, 86:1071).

The study also reported:

 

Although 83 percent of respondents indicated that they entered therapy primarily because of homosexuality, 99 percent of those who participated in the survey said they now believe treatment to change homosexuality can be effective and valuable (p. 1071).

These data are consistent with the ongoing research project of Rob Goetze, who has identified 84 articles or books that contain some relevance to the possibility of sexual orientation change (2004).  Of the data reported, 31 of the 84 studies showed a quantitative outcome of individuals able to change sexual orientation.  These are not studies that merely speculate on the ability to change; they actually have the numbers to back it up!  All of these data come on the heels of warnings from the Surgeon General, The American Academy of Pediatrics, and all of the major mental health associations, which have issued position statements warning of possible harm from such therapy, and have asserted that there is no evidence that such therapy can change a person’s sexual orientation.  For instance, the 1998 American Psychiatric Association Position Statement on Psychiatric Treatment and Sexual Orientation noted:

 

…there is no published scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of reparative therapy as a treatment to change one’s sexual orientation….  The potential risks of reparative therapy are great, including depression, anxiety, and self-destructive behavior (see American Psychiatric Association, 1999, p. 1131).

Thus, physicians are caught in a quandary of a double standard.  On the one hand, they are told that it is “unethical” for a clinician to provide reparative therapy because homosexuality is not a diagnosable disorder, and thus one should not seek to change.  Yet, they contend that not enough studies have been conducted to determine the effectiveness of reparative therapy.  The message is loud and clear: “Do not do this because it is unethical to ask a homosexual person to change.  However, truth be told, we have not collected enough data to know if a person can safely change his or her sexual orientation.”

In situations where sexual orientation is being measured, studies face serious methodological problems (i.e., follow-up assessment, possible bias, no detailed sexual history, random sampling, etc.).  But even given these serious shortcomings from behavioral studies such as these, there are sufficient data to indicate that an individual can change his or her sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual—something that would be an impossibility if homosexuality were caused by genetics.

 

Conclusion

Consider the obvious problem of survival for individuals who allegedly possess a gay gene: individuals who have partners of the same sex are biologically unable to reproduce (without resorting to artificial means).  Therefore, if an alleged “gay gene” did exist, the homosexual population eventually would disappear altogether.  We now know that it is not scientifically accurate to refer to a “gay gene” as the causative agent in homosexuality.  The available evidence clearly establishes that no such gene has been identified.  Additionally, evidence exists which documents that homosexuals can change their sexual orientation.  Future decisions regarding policies about, and/or treatment of, homosexuals should reflect this knowledge.

 

References

American Psychiatric Association (2000), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders,(Washington D.C.: American Psychiatric Association), fourth edition, text revision.

Bailey, Michael J., and Richard C. Pillard (1991), “A Genetic Study of Male Sexual Orientation,”Archives of General Psychiatry, 48:1089-1096, December.

Bailey, Michael J. and D.S. Benishay (1993), “Familial Aggregation of Female Sexual Orientation,”American Journal of Psychiatry, 150[2]:272-277.

Baron M. (1993), “Genetics and Human Sexual Orientation [Editorial],” Biological Psychiatry, 33:759-761.

Billings, P. and J. Beckwith (1993), Technology Review, July, p. 60.

Bower, B. (1992), “Gene Influence Tied to Sexual Orientation,” Science News, 141[1]:6, January 4.

Byne, William (1994), “The Biological Evidence Challenged,” Scientific American, 270[5]:50-55, May.

Byne, William and Bruce Parsons (1993), “Human Sexual Orientation,” Archives of General Psychiatry, 50:228-239, March.

Byrd, A. Dean, Shirley E. Cox, and Jeffrey W. Robinson (2001), “Homosexuality: The Innate-Immutability Argument Finds No Basis in Science,” The Salt Lake Tribune, [On-line] URL: http://www.sltrib.com/2001/may/05272001/commenta/100523.htm.

Crewdson, John (1995), “Dean Hamer’s Argument for the Existence of ‘Gay Genes,’ ” Chicago Tribune, News Section, p. 11, June 25.

Fausto-Sterling, Anne and Evan Balaban (1993), “Genetics and Male Sexual Orientation,” [technical-comment letter to the editor], Science, 261:1257, September 3.

Friedman, Richard C. and Jennifer I. Downey (1994), “Homosexuality,” The New England Journal of Medicine, 331[14]:923-930, October 6.

Gelman, David, with Donna Foote, Todd Barrett, and Mary Talbot (1992), “Born or Bred?,”Newsweek, pp. 46-53, February 24.

Goetze, Rob (2004), “Homosexuality and the Possibility of Change: An Ongoing Research Project,” [On-line], URL: http://www.newdirection.ca/research/index.html.

Hamer, Dean H., Stella Hu, Victoria L. Magnuson, Nan Hu, and Angela M.L. Pattatucci (1993), “A Linkage Between DNA Markers on the X Chromosome and Male Sexual Orientation,” Science, 261:321-327, July 16.

Horgan, John (1995), “Gay Genes, Revisited,” Scientific American, 273[5]:26, November.

Howe, Richard (1994), “Homosexuality in America: Exposing the Myths,” American Family Association, [On-line], URL: http://www.afa.net/homosexual_agenda/homosexuality.pdf.

Hubbard, Ruth and Elijah Wald (1997), Exploding the Gene Myth (Boston: Beacon Press).

“Human Genome Report Press Release” (2003), International Consortium Completes Human Genome Project, [On-line], URL: http://www.ornl.gov/TechResources/Human_Genome/project/50yr.html.

Kallmann, F.J. (1952), “Comparative Twin Study on the Genetic Aspects of Male Homosexuality,”Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases, 115:283-298.

King, M. and E. McDonald (1992), “Homosexuals Who are Twins: A Study of 46 Probands,” The British Journal of Psychiatry, 160: 407-409.

Kinsey, A.C. W.B. Pomeroy, C.E. Martin (1948), Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (Philadelphia, PA: W.B. Saunders).

Kinsey, A.C. W.B. Pomeroy, C.E. Martin, P. H. Gebhard (1953), Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (Philadelphia, PA: W.B. Saunders).

Laumann, Edward O., John H. Gagnon, Robert T. Michael, and Stuart Michaels (1994), The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press).

LeVay, Simon (1991), “A Difference in Hypothalamic Structure Between Heterosexual and Homosexual Men,” Science, 253:1034-1037, August 30.

Mann, Charles (1994), “Behavioral Genetics in Transition,” Science, 264:1686-1689, June 17.

Marcus, Eric (1993), Is It a Choice? (San Francisco, CA: Harper).

NCBI (2004), “Human Genome Resources,” [On-line], URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/genome/guide/human/.

Nicolosi, Joseph, A. Dean Byrd, and Richard Potts (2000), “Retrospective Self-reports of Changes in Homosexual Orientation: A Consumer Survey of Conversion Therapy Clients,” Psychological Reports, 86:1071-1088, June.

Rainer, J.D., A. Mesnikoff, LC. Kolb, and A. Carr (1960), “Homosexuality and Heterosexuality in Identical Twins,” Psychosomatic Medicine, 22:251-259.

Reinisch, June M. and Ruth Beasley (1990) The Kinsey Institute New Report on Sex (New York: St. Martin’s Press).

Rice, George, Carol Anderson, Neil Risch, and George Ebers (1999), “Male Homosexuality: Absence of Linkage to Microsatellite Markers at Xq28,” Science, 284:665-667, April 23.

Risch, Neil, Elizabeth Squires-Wheeler, and Bronya J.B. Keats (1993), “Male Sexual Orientation and Genetic Evidence,” Science, 262:2063-2064, December 24.

Shepherd, Gordon M. (1994) Neurobiology (Oxford: Oxford University Press), third edition.

Spitzer, Robert L. (2003), “Can Some Gay Men and Lesbians Change Their Sexual Orientation?,”Archives of Sexual Behavior, 32[5]:403-417, October 5.

VandeHei, Jim (2004), “Dean Says Faith Swayed Decision on Gay Unions,” The Washington Post, p. A-1, January 8.

Wickelgren, Ingrid (1999), “Discovery of ‘Gay Gene’ Questioned,” Science, 284:571, April 23.

 


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The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and the Foundation of a Free Society

800px-All_men_are_created_equal

“It has been said that when human beings stop believing in God they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse: they believe in anything.”

Malcolm Muggeridge

 

Our Declaration of independence reads,”We hold these truths to be self-evident”…

So what happens when a previously free society no longer accepts Absolute Truth?

If; “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free,” then to deny the truth means you will loose your freedom.

Government becomes a kind of god because selfish people no longer behave responsibly with their freedoms.

Government gets big.

Government takes more and more.

The people stop providing for themselves and become slaves to the government.

Totalitarianism is inevitable to those who deny truth and the personal responsibility that comes with knowledge of the Truth.

Freedom cannot survive as our one and only truth.
Freedom is the result of acceptance and application of Truth.

Truth sets us free.
Without it we are slaves.

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”
(John 8:32 ; 36)

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)

The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and the Arts

image

“Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12)

Imagine a painter throwing away half of his or her color palette.

Or imagine a black and white photograph without white, only shades of dark gray.

Whether the subject is painting,photography,theater, or literature, all the above involve using contrasts to make images or tell stories.

Painters use colors ranging from light to dark.

image

Photographers use bright sunlight to dark shadows.

Theater and literature use contrasts in good and evil, peace and conflict, justice and injustice, love and hatred,truth and falsehood.

Now imagine a World that no longer accepts or believes in Absolute Truth, where the contrasts between right and wrong are no longer clear, and men stumble in the darkness because they cannot see.

God of Truth – He is the Rock of Absolute Truth

An Absolute Firm Foundation

An Absolute Firm Foundation

 

“He is the Rock, His work is perfect;
For all His ways are justice,
A God of truth and without injustice;
Righteous and upright is He.
For I proclaim the name of the Lord:
Ascribe greatness to our God.”

Deuteronomy 32:4,5

 

The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and Creativity – The Loss of Inspiration and Innovation

Demolition

Demolition (Photo credit: hoskarsson)

“In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” 
― George Orwell

“Truth is so obscure in these times, and falsehood so established, that, unless we love the truth, we cannot know it.”
― Blaise Pascal

Deconstructionism of truth is prevalent in today’s society.

“There are no absolutes”, is the theme of Deconstructionism.

(also known as Relativism,Existentialism and Postmodernism)

The negative effects are broad and damaging to society, industry, and politics.

No facet of society is left unharmed by the denial of truth.

Until we believe there are truths that we can believe in, we will have nothing in which we can invest belief, for truth is the subject,and belief is the action.

Conversely, to the degree that we are sure of that which we believe, to that same degree we will have confidence, courage, and willingness to take risk.

Truth gives solid ground for the activation of belief, and belief attempts things that doubt ignores.

Belief is as essential to innovation as water is to life.

Truth, belief and innovative creativity are interdependent.

Truth inspires us to believe we can achieve new possibilities.
Truth is called,”light”, in the Bible, enabling us to see possibilities.

Without belief that something came be done that has never previously been done, nothing new would become reality,

because we would not believe it can be done, and would therefore not attempt to do it.

That is how truth fosters belief ,creativity and innovation.

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32)

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)

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The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and Belief in the Bible – The Biggest Threat to Any People

A bible from 1859.

A bible from 1859. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“It is impossible to enslave, mentally or socially, a bible-reading people. The principles of the bible are the groundwork of human freedom.” 
― Horace Greeley

“Have I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth?”

(The Apostle Paul – Galatians 4:16)

The vast majority of modern Americans believe everything is relative and there are no absolutes.

Deconstructionism of truth, and the growing sceptisism regarding the authority ,accuracy and relevance of the Bible as the source of all truth, is creating a generation of people who feel lost and alone.

In this environment, anyone who has absolute faith and belief in a given truth, and states it as such, will likely be considered rude, pushy ,over bearing ,and judgemental.

The inevitable degradation of society will follow any people who abandon truth.

Without truth as a basis for what can be known, we cannot hope to solve the problems we face because we cannot build upon what is known since we deny that anything can be known!

“Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.”

(John 17:17)

The source of truth is the Bible. The living , breathing Word of God is Jesus Christ.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.”

(John 1:1-5)

 “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:  who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”

 (John 1:14,15)

May the light of truth of Jesus Christ the Savior, shine in our hearts and minds.

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The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and Unity – The Reason Society Can No Longer Reason

 

Brumidi, Constantino - Apotheosis of Washingto...

Brumidi, Constantino – Apotheosis of Washington, detail E Pluribus Unum – 1865 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them:

“Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.”

(Matthew 12:25)

 

E pluribus unum

E Pluribus Unum, (Out of  Many ,One), is part of the history that made us a great nation and that made the world a better place for many.

We need an anthem of basic truths that inspires us to live in unity again.

These basic truths once formed a general basis for consensus,unity, and resolve for improving our society.

Without a clear definition of right and wrong, truth and error, everything will be a blend of gray without clear meaning.

~Reasoning is based on what is known, such as truth and facts~

To solve problems, reach solutions, make a diagnosis,theory, hypothesis, create, and improve anything, we need known truths to build upon.

(Educated guesses if you will, things we can say we are confident we know).

And the more sure we are, the bolder we will be in our attempts to make solutions to problems.

And the more of us who agree on basic truths, the more frequent and soon we will come to consensus on issues that demand our solution.

But without basic fundamental truths to unite us, we will remain divided, and will fall.

Without a basic assumption that anything can be known, we cannot hope to begin to reason solutions to our problems

by building educated guesses upon known fact and truth

because we deny that truth even exists!

 (such as presuppositions, ideological underpinnings, hierarchical values, and frames of reference)

Truth activates belief, and belief attempts things that doubt ignores.

This is the heart of realizing new realities and achievement.

Related terms are postmodernism, existentialism, and deconstructionism, but what all of these terms have in common is the abandonment of surety in truth.

Without the ability to say with can be confident of anything, we will likely lack the confidence to do or achieve anything.

This is also true in our attempts to create art or theater, be it novel or feature-length movie.

Is it any wonder that good theater seems more miss than hit?

Is it any wonder that the great art, theater and literature is in the past, or is based upon older literature or re-made movies ?

Is it any wonder that the overall approval ratings of government and officials is at an all time low?

Is it any wonder that the greater portion of change our politicians bring is for the worse?

Is it any wonder that political parties almost always make decisions down party lines ?

Is it any wonder that scientific and political debate quickly degrades into personal attacks?

Is it any wonder that thoughtless and absurd political dealings threaten the fabric and integrity of our American government ?

(These men and women are supposed to represent our finest leaders and patriots).

Is it any wonder that ,”we the people”, are often called,” we the sheeple”?

(If we deny the ability to absolutely believe anything we will likely fall for anything).

Is it any wonder that the best days of American ingenuity seem to be behind us?

Yet,we can rediscover truth as a nation and a people.

We can build the basic absolute truths that serve as a basis for consensus.

“Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father except through Me.”

(John 14:6)

Jesus is the truth.

If we reject Jesus, we reject the truth, we lose the way, and we forfeit life as a people, and a nation.

If we know Him we know truth.

Jesus is the way. If we know Him we know the way.

Jesus is life. If we know Him we know life.

This is where you can start.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

(John 3:16)

Jesus Falls Beneath the Cross

Jesus Falls Beneath the Cross (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

(Yes. It is that simple. Jesus did all the heavy lifting on the cross).

Just believe and receive Him and His love gift of life that He bought with His blood for you.

Pray ,and He will hear you.

Write me, and I will rejoice with you.

And I pray  that we all can one day soon, rejoice in unity as a nation.

Out of many, one.

Ethos,Pathos,Logos – The Image of God

Bust of Aristotle. Marble, Roman copy after a ...

Bust of Aristotle. Marble, Roman copy after a Greek bronze original by Lysippos from 330 BC; the alabaster mantle is a modern addition. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

God created man in His image.

Aristotle identified three primary areas of influence and response that comprise the mind, heart, and soul of mankind.

He called them Ethos, Pathos, and logos.

God is sovereign and all Powerful- this is Ethos

God is the author of wisdom and is all knowing- this is Logos

God is Love and so loved the world He gave His Son – this is Pathos

The Psalms puts it this way;

Psalms 139:1-4 “O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways. For there  is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.”

God knows us, understands us, comprehends us altogether because He loves us.

His pathos brought His ethos and logos to our rescue.

His pathos / love bridged the gap between us and God through Christ.

God wants our love as well.

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” (Deuteronomy 6)

The most remarkable thing about what God requires from us is that He gave all of himself for us in Christ first.

He expressed all His ethos, pathos, and logos for our benefit through the cross.

Is God not worthy of all our love in return?

DNA is Evidence of God – “order with content,” is proof of Intelligence Based Origin -Lee Stroeble

 Our genetic code is language, and is but a record of what,”God said.”

Lee Stroeble , former Court Journalist for the Chicago Sun Times, presents the overwhelming scientific evidence found in our DNA to support the Biblical God as our Creator.

Using the Story line from the movie,”Contact”, Stroeble makes his case.

Stroeble points out that Carl Sagan said that if we ever received an ordered message with content from outer space, then we could reasonably conclude that the message originated from intelligent life.

Though Sagan denied God as creator, his claim for ,”order with content,”as proof of Intelligence would come years after his death in modern Genetic scientific discoveries in DNA.

The Bible record of creation in the book of Genesis repeats the words,”God said”,11 times during the creation of the world and all living things.

The correlation between Genesis and the language of DNA at the core of all living things means our genetic code is but a record of what,”God said.”

DNA is a ,”message with content,” far more sophisticated than our greatest minds can fully grasp.

DNA is a coded language so sophisticated that our greatest minds still can’t fathom it fully, and those most familiar with the ongoing work say we will be deciphering it for the next 100 years. (Genetic Encyclopedia Project,ENCODE, 2012)

Appendix

The 3% of our DNA that is “STRUCTURAL” meaning that it defines our biological characteristics, has been mapped.

The rest of our DNA appears to work as a series of switches comprising a communicational network for our structural information, and was previously considered random ,”junk”.

It is this apparent communication network that we know least about.

This is the part of our DNA that is subject to discovery.

JUNK DNA- May Not Be Junk After All

(Quoted from Gene exchange no 2, 1996)In another reminder that we may not understand the full ramifications of genetic engineering, Science magazine recently reported new work on the function of genetic material*. Scientists have long been puzzled by the fact that fully 97% of the DNA in human cells does not code for proteins and appears to consist of meaningless sequences. The possibility that this apparently useless DNA has some as yet unknown function continues to tantalize scientists.The Science article reports on a paper suggesting that the non-coding 97% of the DNA, commonly referred to as junk DNA, might have a function.

The authors of the paper employed linguistic tests to analyze junk DNA and discovered striking similarities to ordinary language. The scientists interpret those similarities as suggestions that there might be messages in the junk sequences, although its anyone s guess as to how the language might work. (* F. Flam, Hints of a language in junk DNA, Science 266:1320, 1994)

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:26,27)

Pascal on Mankind and God

image

“Man would desire to be great and sees that he is little; would desire to be happy and sees that he is miserable; would desire to be perfect and sees that he is full of imperfections; would desire to be the object of the love and esteem of men, and sees that his faults merit only aversion and contempt. The embarrassment wherein he finds himself produces in him the most unjust and criminal passions imaginable, for he conceives a mortal hatred against that truth which blames him and convinces him of his faults.” ~Blaise Pascal~ (Pensees)

Christianity and Islam – The Basic Fundamentals of Different Fundamentalisms

Map showing the relative proportion of Christi...

Map showing the relative proportion of Christianity (red) and Islam (green) in each country. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The essence of any religion is the fundamental truths it is founded upon.

That would comprise a religion’s Fundamentalism.

A “Fundamentalist”,is one who attempts to strictly adhere to a religion’s fundamentals.

The word fundamental can mean something  good or bad, depending on a religion’s core truths.

The Supreme Doctrines of Christianity and Islam are polar opposites.

“Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  (Matthew 22:34-40)

“Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21

God wants us to love Him, and has provided the ultimate reason to desire to love Him by loving and giving His one and only Son, Jesus Christ as a sacrifice, the just for the unjust, on the cross. God WINS our love and trust.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”(John 3:16)

In contrast to that, Islam means,”Submit to Allah”, and force is the means Allah’s word, the Koran, imposes.

Free will is forcefully denied by this fundamental belief of Islam.

(Read the following quotes from the Koran)

Qur’an:8:39 “Fight them [who do not believe] until all opposition ends and all submit to Allah.”

Ishaq:324 “He said, ‘Fight them so that there is no more rebellion, and religion, all of it, is for Allah only. Allah must have no rivals.'”

Qur’an:8:65 “O Prophet, urge the faithful to fight. If there are twenty among you with determination they will vanquish two hundred; if there are a hundred then they will slaughter a thousand unbelievers, for the infidels are a people devoid of understanding.”

Qur’an:9:5 “Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war.”

Qur’an:9:29 “Fight those who do not believe until they all surrender, paying the protective tax in submission.”

Qur’an:47:4 “When you clash with the unbelieving Infidels in
battle (fighting Jihad in Allah’s Cause), smite their necks until you overpower them, killing and wounding many of them. At length, when you have thoroughly subdued them, bind them firmly, making (them)captives. Thereafter either generosity or ransom (them based upon what benefits Islam) until the war lays down its burdens. Thus are you commanded by Allah to continue carrying out Jihad against the unbelieving infidels until they submit to Islam.”

Free World listen!! It is clear! Democracy was born out of Christinity’s “Unalienable rights” and the belief that “all men are CREATED equal”. 

Allah demands we all SUBMIT to him. Or die.
Islam is fundamentally tyrannical.

God’s desire is for us is to LOVE Him, and He personally came down to us to die for our sins and defeat death for us.

What more could He do ?

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

God did this to set is free from sin and death. Christianity is fundamentally liberaiting.

“If the Son of Man sets you free you shall be Free indeed.”

Different core beliefs, different fundamentals, different fundamentalists.

Additional verses and links

Qur’an Sura 4:34, “Men have authority over women because [Allah] has made the one superior to the other… Good women are obedient… As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them. Then if they obey you, take no further action against them…”

http://www.addthis.com/bookmark.php

 

Ayn Rand on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, 1967 – She Was An Atheist

Ayn Rand,Author of Atlas Shrugged, First Appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, 1967

Part 1 of 2

Part 2 of 2

Part 1 -This is the same interview from a different source in case the first one has been removed again-

Part 2 – This is the same interview from a different source in case the first one has been removed again-

“Mankind suffers from two excesses: to exclude reason, and to live by nothing but reason.” ~ Blaise Pascal~
Faith owns the comprehension of things eternal.
Reason owns the comprehension of things temporal.
The eternal transcends the temporal.

Carson did an incredible job interviewing Rand. Although the video is 26 minutes long, the basis for her beliefs and philosophy are revealed in the first few minutes.

He starts right off by asking her,“What are the basic principles of your definition of objectivity and of your philosophy you believe in ?”

Her answer said it all, “The basic principle of objectivism is that man must be guided exclusively by reason.”

This glaring hole in her philosophy exposes her atheism,which she openly professed to believe.

We all have the right and freedom to choose our own path and destiny, but to deny the laws that govern the means of arriving at our desired destination belong to our creator, whom she openly denies to exist.

“The just shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:17)

The laws of reason and nature do not dictate the actions or ability of the Creator.

Rather, God dictates the laws that apply to us, and He lives beyond those limitations.

To believe in God’s unlimited abilities is to have faith, which transcends reason.

The seeds of postmodernism can be found in her belief that we should arrive at the same moral truth purely by reason.

Time has proven Rand is wrong.

She believed that altruism and self interest were in opposition to each other and that society must choose one or the other.

Yet she even conceded to Carson that philosophy had many definitions for morality and what is ethical.

Rand believed in capitalism. What she failed to see was that capitalism only works so long as democracy is sustained.

Democracy is dependent on freedom, and freedom requires personal responsibility.
Personal responsibility requires a moral standard. Jesus is that standard, and His sacrifice is our model.

A moral standard is sameness.

This is where Ayn Rand has been proven wrong.

The predominate philosophy today is postmodernism, the belief that,”what you believe is okay for you and what I believe is okay for me.”

Postmodernism does not fulfill Rand’s vision of a single standard for morals and ethics.

Having come from an extreme socialist country, Russia, she clearly disavowed forced altruism,which is what socialism is.

But Rand however did not disavow Communism’s atheism. For had she embraced Christianity, she would have seen in Christ, the inspiration for self sacrifice that most of our founding fathers saw and followed.

Jesus Christ is the supreme symbol of moral standard many signers of our Declaration of Independence followed when they willfully gave their lives and possessions for a higher ideal.

Ayn Rand’s philosophy is anti-socialistic, which would appeal to fiscal conservatives who do not have a well developed religious philosophy.

The problem is that Ayn Rand’s philosophy is also fatally anti-democratic.

Selfishness leads to greed, which is not only morally wrong, it is killing our politics, banking system, government and people.
And when self becomes the god of a nation, democracy fails.

John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (NIV Bible)

Proverbs 19:17 “He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord,
And He will pay back what he has given.”

“Mankind suffers from two excesses: to exclude reason, and to live by nothing but reason.” ~ Blaise Pascal~

Suffering: If God is good, why is there so much evil in the world? A Audio Sermon By Tim Keller of Redeemer Presbyterian Church Manhattan N.Y.

Suffering is one of the biggest questions facing the human race.

Why does God allow evil and suffering?

The why of suffering is also the biggest accusation for atheists who claim God is indifferent to the plight of mankind.

The cross of Christ proves that God cares and has intervened on our behalf through Jesus’s sacrificial death on the cross to pay for our sins and save us from an eternal state of suffering.

The book of Job is considered to be the oldest book in the Bible, yet it is about suffering and loss, and the struggle to maintain hope and belief that God really does loves us despite loss.

The biggest question we should ask is, “do I love God for what is in it for me?”

Or do I love God regardless of if I get anything out of  the situation?”  Isn’t that how God loved me?”

Unconditional?

Isn’t that Grace ?

So suffering is the worst kind of teacher, but also the best kind of teacher, because if we can say that even after suffering the bitterness of loss that we still love God, then our love is truly mature and free, and full of the deepest meaning.

We love Him because He first loved us.

Click on the link below for a 30 minute sermon on this subject by Dr, Tim Keller.

http://sermons2.redeemer.com/sermons/suffering-if-god-good-why-there-so-much-evil-world

Jesus never sought to amuse them! by Archibald Brown

 

 

Archibald Brown was C.H. Spurgeon’s successor.

Jézus soha nem akarta szórakoztatni őket! (He never sought to amuse them! by Archibald Brown).

Having Eyes That See

“I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”
C.S. Lewis

“All I have seen teaches me to trust the creator for all I have not seen.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.” ( Luke 10:23)

The Truth Spoken in Love Leads Us to the Compassion of Christ

“Christians are in themselves no wiser than are other men. What they have, they have by grace. They must be ‘all things to all men.’ But it is not kindness to tell patients that need strong medicine that nothing serious is wrong with them. Christians are bound to tell men the truth about themselves; that is the only way of bringing them to recognize the mercy, the compassion, of Christ. For if men are told the truth about themselves, and if they are warned against the false remedies that establish men in their wickedness, then, by the power of the Spirit of God, they will flee to the Christ through whom alone they must be saved” (The Intellectual Challenge of the Gospel).

“Only Jesus Christ and His death on the cross can wash away all our sins. Jesus died and rose again. No one else has done that for you. Van Til asserts: “If God was to continue communication with His creature, it was either to be by condemnation or by atonement.” God, through His mercy, provided a perfect and effectual atonement through the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. Believe in Him and you will be saved.”

Corneilus Van Til

Final Events – The Signing of a Treaty With Israel Reveals The “Beast” and Day One of the Great Tribulation

 “because they did not receive the love of the truth”

 “Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.

Let no one deceive you by any means; for that  Day  will  not  come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

 “Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time.For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.

And then the lawless one will be revealed,

whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.

The coming of the lawless  one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

(II Thessalonians 2:1-12)

Watch “Tim Keller on “The New Atheists”” on YouTube – 3 Minutes

Talking About Homosexuality – Dr. Tim Keller

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“Acknowledge that often when this topic comes up the rhetoric gets heated – and those who represent the Christian position are not always respectful of those who disagree, nor do they have sound reasons for their position. Christians have no more or less of a right to tell other people how to live their lives than anyone else. But we all have ways we think the world should be; and we all have the right to try to contend for these views respectfully. The gospel – that we are saved only by sheer grace – should help Christians to do this without self-righteousness.

Homosexuality is not God’s original design for sexuality – sex is designed for marriage between a man and a woman. But that belief should have no impact on a church’s or a Christian’s desire to love and serve the needs and interests of all their neighbors, including gay people, people of other faiths, and so on.

Note that there is not widespread division over what the Bible says about homosexuality. All three branches of Christianity (Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant) agree – on at least four things: one, that every mention of homosexual practice in the Bible says that it is wrong; two, that it is specifically prohibited in both the Old and New Testaments; three, that it did not just reflect the prejudices of the day – it cut against the views of ancient cultures; and four, that the whole arc of the Bible begins with a heterosexual marriage (Adam and Eve) and ends with the vision of one –the wedding feast in the book of Revelation.” Tim Keller

Foundational Importance

” For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” (NKJV ) I Corinthians 3:11

In God’s Image – What All Religions Have In Common – What is Unique About Christianity

People wonder why the world has so many religions. 

Could it be that all religions have beliefs that reflect the inner longing we all share?

That we all were created for a common purpose and all have a common desire born from that purpose?

Could it be that our longing is to know and worship our creator God?

Some say that man created the idea of a god in order to explain what men could not understand.

These similarities have been dismissed by many as ,”wishful thinking,”in an effort to give hope and meaning to what would otherwise be a meaningless existence.

But that theory does not explain universal longing.

This is a longing that drives us to seek satisfaction in power or pleasure and only leaves us even more empty inside as it destroys us and our world in the process.

Some religions are similar because they are outward expressions of what all of us have at our core. We were created in God’s image, and we all know whom we seek, though we have not personally encountered Him, and that is God. Our Heavenly Father created us for Himself and we are hard-wired to need Him.

When God gave life to the first man, Adam, He did so by breathing life into Adam.

Sin separated man from God and death took hold of men. This was the result of God’s absence in relation to mankind.

The very nature of how mankind thinks and feels was changed when Adam and Eve disobeyed God resulting in mankind knowing the difference between right and wrong, thus our conscience became subject to guilt and shame.

Satan’s purpose in causing mankind to fall , just as he did by being overcome by the allure of selfish pride, was to bring the same eternal punishment on us as he brought on himself, and to grieve the heart of God.
Even then God promised to make a way for us tp escape Satan’s judgement in Hell’s flame and for us to be restored to God.
For this simple reason, we are ever longing for a home we’ve never been to, a love that will complete us, and a presence that will finally give ultimate hope and meaning to our lives.
We all need God to once again breathe life into our inmost being.

This is why all religions have basic similarities.  All are born out of a need to worship a supreme entity as God designed.Still, that a person must merit favor with its god is common to all the world’s religions except one.

Only Christianity is unique in that one belief in particular.God has merited favor for us Himself in the personage of Jesus Christ, and offers such favor to us as a gift because He knows that none of our best works are good enough to do so.

The reason for Him to bestow this favor upon His creation is simply because He loves us.

The root of all other religions, both pagan and all others, goes down to what God created us to be, similar to Him in some way that reflects Him and is only ever completely satisfied when in close relationship with Him.

We were made to love and worship God, not to be our own god.
The root of all religion comes from inside man. We all have longing that seeks to be fulfilled and can only be found outside our being through faith in Christ as our Saviour.
Christ breathed this new life into the disciples after He rose from the grave. (John 20).

Christ is our way to the Father.
He is the answer to our universal longing.

Perspective is Gained from Knowing Both Extremes

All Truth Is Relative? Jesus Is Truth

  • wpid-paperartist_2014-09-02_12-30-00.jpeg– Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov“Even those who have renounced Christianity and attack it, in their inmost being still follow the Christian ideal, for hitherto neither their subtlety nor the ardor of their hearts has been able to create a higher ideal of man and of virtue than the ideal given by Christ.”

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

Jesus himself is Truth.

Truth is the personage of Jesus.

He is the author of all truth’

He is the embodiment of all truth, righteousness and the giver of all moral code.

He will judge the living and the dead.

Many who consider themselves atheists believe that ALL truth is relative and there is no absolute truth. Yet if you try to reason with them it’s not long before they are cornered and they react, deflect,deny, scoff,accuse,curse,resort to personal attacks, in short, it gets nasty. Why? That is all they’ve got to use. They speak from a void. 

The problem with that those who make this statement are themselves making an absolute statement by using the word, ALL.
The absolute meaning of the  statement is even reinforced further by declaring ,”there is no” absolute truth.

Both are absolute statements by claiming absolutely there is no absolute truth.

The law of non-contradiction, one of the Laws of Logic, states that contradicting statements cannot both be true at the same time.
The statement, “all truth is relative and there is no absolute truth”,is disqualified by contradicting its own meaning and is therefore nul and void.

Next time you hear someone make these statement ask them, “Do you know that absolutely?”

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6

God’s Word Must Be in Your Heart To Have Affect on Your Mind

Written in Latin, Polish and German. Discovere...

Written in Latin, Polish and German. Discovered in 1827 by Josef Chmel. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 Your word I have hidden in my heart,

That I might not sin against You.

Psalm 119:11

Has God’s word migrated from your mind to your heart?

The truth is that thoughts are guided by desires and desires come from the heart.

The heart will compromise the integrity of the mind for that which it refuses to accept.

Herein lies the supremacy of love, and the benefit of Loving God with all that we have.

Loving God to the fullness of our capacities means having nothing left with which to love anything contrary to Him.

The Starry Sky Above, and The Moral Law Within – Written On The Hearts of All Mankind

English: , Prussian philosopher. Português: , ...

Prussian philosopher Immanuel Kant        (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Two things awe me the most. The starry sky above me, and the moral law within me.”

Immanuel Kant – 18 Th.  Century philosopher

Kant’s works in mathematics were an early influence on Albert Einstein.

Influenced by Newton’s work, Kant correctly laid the theory for the formation of the universe from gaseous nebulas – in the late 1700’s !

Kant also correctly theorized that the Milky Way was composed mostly of stars like our sun.

Still, His works of philosophy and reason are seen as even greater contributions.

I find it very interesting that such a great thinker would find both creation and human conscience the two things that ,”awe,” him most.

The reason I say that is because the Bible speaks specifically to both as empirical witnesses of the existence of God.

“The Starry Sky Above Me”

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.”

(Romans 1:20)

“The Moral Law Within Me”

“Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.)”

(Romans 2:14,15)

I believe the two immutable realities of the Moral Law Within and The Starry Sky Above are the reasons why those of use who resist them become angry so quickly and to such a severe degree.

The Awe and Wonder of Nature – Reflections of Our Creator

Nature (2417029180)

Nature (2417029180) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The link below is to a time lapse video of the northern lights.

Magnificent to behold.

Click on this link below.

http://vimeo.com/m/40555466

Have you ever asked yourself why we marvel at the natural beauty we see around us?


The Bible says that nature reflects the attributes of God who is our Creator.


Could it be that awe and wonder are actually our own deep sense of longing for connection with the One who made us?

The Bible calls this longing for connection to something to which we feel cut off from,”groaning”.

 “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 8:23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 8:24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 8:25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.” (NIV) Romans 8:22-25

How The Gospel Changes Us – An Audio Sermon By Dr.Tim Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Manhattan, NY

Christ's Resurection from Death

“How the Gospel Changes Us“, could also be called, “How to Be Sure You Interpret the Gospel as God Intended it to Be in Order to Be Truly Saved”.

This sermon is a rare and ernest call to the most basic reformation truth; That mankind is compelled to corrupt the true gospel, and how to recognize the difference.

Dr. Keller reveals that even as Christ was crucified between two thieves, the gospel is also theologically between two thieves.

Quoting the first century church father, Tertullian, Dr. Keller points out that one thief represents legalism, the belief that our deeds merit favor with God, and the other thief represents  license, the belief that since Christ paid for our sins we can live anyway we want.

He says that both views  skew the truth of the gospel to the right or the left, and both rob power from the gospel that is only released with Christ Centeredness.

Both sides appeal to self.

On the moralistic side , self wells up with pride at the belief that works merit favor with God.

The cross of Christ is seen as insufficient as the sole means of salvation, and is therefore supplemented with good works.

On the license side, self is driven by the pursuit of pleasure.

The cross of Christ is then taken for granted and used as an excuse to pursue selfish pleasure.

But the cross of Christ is not simply a balance between the two views , it is ,”something else”, and we are told that we do not have a natural category for the gospel.

We also learn that,”Truth without grace is not truth, and grace without truth is not grace.”

But Christ was full of grace and truth.  

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

(John 1:14)

It is my hope that this message will open your heart and mind to the need for the ,”Gospelization”, of all our Christian theology.

Free online.

Click on the link below.

http://sermons2.redeemer.com/sermons/how-gospel-changes-us

Enjoy.

The Truth Filter For A Postmodern World – God Takes Everything Into Account

 

truthlies

Here is a way to test if your worldview or religion qualifies as the one valid religion from the one and only God.

If Christians are right about  the way to know the One and Only God , then that makes the One God our creator.

If God is our creator then He would also have given us a singular detailed instruction book about how to Know him.

To not do so would be negligently sinful, and God is perfectly Holy and without sin.

God did give us an instruction book that details the way for us to know Him.

Its called the Bible.

The Bible is about the one and only way to the one and only God.

The Bible details the epic story of God and His relationship to mankind, as creator, sustainer, redeemer and God.

I say this because we are being told that truth is relative and each of us should look within ourselves to discover our own truth, or that there are many ways to God.

Many also believe that Christianity has  failed as religion, even contribiting to the ongoing violence of the world.

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

Any truly honest Christian will tell you that regardless of the institution, as often is the case ,power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Even in Christendom.

Though Christ did no violence, many have falsely done violence in His name.

But Jesus called us to love our enemies.

Mankind is at best a muddled reflection of who Christ is.

We just don’t love as well as Jesus.

So the blame for the misconception that Christianity has failed  is clearly not Christianity, but those who claim Christ but do not love God with all their heart, soul, mind , and strength.

Christ’s example on the cross of what it means to love God with all your heart, soul, mind , and strength demands His followers love as He did.

Some do, many try, most do not, love as Christ did.

But that does not make Christianity a failure, it only means many fail at true Christianity.

God is all knowing, all powerful, and loves mankind whom He created in His image.

We were created to bring Him glory.

When sin separated us from our perfect Creator, death and suffering came into being.

I have attempted to compile a list of good and contrasting bad scenarios of life as we know it  and of which an all knowing God who is love is doubtlessly aware of.

The following are many of the contrasting attributes of our world .

Consider all of these in terms  of desirable or undesirable outcomes.

Good and Evil

Heat and Cold

Light and Darkness

Belief and Doubt

Love and Hate

Peace and Conflict

Hope and Despair

Humility and Pride

Generosity and Greed

Truth and Falsehood

Innocence and Guilt

Rejoicing and Shame

Fulfillment and Emptiness

Contentment and Longing

Acceptance and Rejection

Life and Death

Joy and Anguish

Positive and Negative

Presence and Absence

Order and Chaos

Note that each of us is hard wired to know right from wrong and we will all agree which of these scenarios is desirable and which is not.

Now consider this question;

If an all-powerful, all-knowing , all present, perfect and Holy Righteous God  who is love exists, would He overlook anything listed here?

He would not.

Nothing would be beyond His ability if He is all-powerful.

Nothing would be overlooked if He is all-knowing.

Nothing would be left out because He was not there.

Nothing would be omitted  and compromise His love for us because He is Love and is Holy and perfect.

These are the attributes of the God of the Bible.

God is good.

“God alone is good,” luke 18:19

God warms the heart and soul.

“They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32

God is the Light of the World.

“While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” John 9:5

God calls us to belief.

“If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.” Mark 9:23

God is love.

“neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:39

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1John 4:8

God promotes peace.

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

God gives hope.

“but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”Isaiah 40:31

God in Christ Jesus modeled the greatest humility ever known when God came down to us and became one of us.

“Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus ; Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man,  he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross! “

God Is Full of Gracious Generosity .

“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! “(1John 3:1 a)

God Showed Us Truth Through Jesus Christ.

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” ( John 14:6)

God offered His Son for our sins though He was innocent and we are guilty.

“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit,” ( 1Peter 3:18)

God through Christ Promises Rejoicing.

“So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.” ( John 16:22)

God Through Christ Brings Fulfillment.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)

God Through Christ Gives Contentment .

“Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)

God In Christ Makes Us Accepted.

“Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.” Romans 15:7

God offers life in Christ.

“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand.” John 10:28

God gives us joy.

“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” John 15:11

God Makes Positive Things happen.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

God comforts us with His presence.

“You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.” Acts 2:28

God has promised to brings Order to everything.

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

God has left us His word His word, The Bible.

He has preserved the Bible as the Ancient Dead Sea Scrolls have proven.

He loves you and has shown that fully in Christ.

Look no further. He is real, his word is truth.

The One God has made One Way.

And that is all we need.

His Name is Jesus Christ.

“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him,  for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 9-13

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