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Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Soldanelle Plant Is Solitary Of Natures Amazment

By Farid


Actually this little plant and the way it grows and bloom is one of our great creators marvels.

These plants grow and bear flowers in the most atypical way. There are snow patches in these areas edged with frozen ice. Through this ice curst these soldanelle flowers blossom and the surprising fact is that these weak flowers come out through the ice safe and unscratched.

In the by-gone summer the plant is said to spread its leaves wide and flat on the floor, and drink in the sun-rays, and it keeps the heat stored in the root through the winter.

When spring comes and stirs the pulses under the snow and when it sprouts,  the warmth that was stored in the roots through summer is given out in the strangest measure that a little dome is thawed in the snow over its head.

As the plant keeps getting taller and taller this bell of air as well rises higher. And on fine day the flower bud forms safely within it. Even though it is under the ice the flower is safe and not ruined because it is in the bell of air.

Then to conclude, the icy covering gives way and allows the little flower to blossom through in to the warm sun shine.The mauve petals shine like snow itself, and the crystalline texture of its petals seem to reveal the flight through it came.

Although the conditions seem unworkable this bell shaped flower blossoms in the Alpine meadows. Frequently there are 2 or 3 flowers on each stem. The flowers are bell shaped and bent over. The flower is divided into five lobes and each lobe is divided into many fold narrow strips.

This is an uncommon plant which grows in harsh weather and under the strangest surroundings.

This pretty flower not only adds grand beauty to nature but also reveals the creative power and the capability of the almighty creator.

We human beings can gain knowledge of a great lesson from this simple but strong plant.

When things seem to be impossible and under the most difficult conditions, we must rely only on the power that is above us.

This God who has created us has the power and ability to change any circumstance or else take us through any variety of weather, if we will only have faith in him and not trust and depend on our own feelings and influence.

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Overcome with Awe

Insightful article :)


Trevin Wax
Trevin Wax Blog | November 26, 2013

After spending 11 chapters magnifying the grace of God shown to us in Jesus Christ, the apostle Paul broke out into a hymn of praise:"Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!" (Rom. 11:33).

Have you come to this place before? A place of awe before an all-knowing, all-wise God?Whenever we study the big questions of life, the big debates of our world, and the development of a biblical worldview, we can easily become smug and confident in what we know. We put God in a box and assume we have figured out His ways and His plans.

Reacting against this arrogant overconfidence, some Christians make everything about the Scriptures a mystery. They wonder whether we can know anything with certainty about who God is and what He has done.

The apostle Paul struck the right balance. Paul believed he knew things about God, and he held these truths with confidence. At the same time, the more Paul knew, the more he realized he didn't know everything. In other words, though Paul could know many things about God with absolute certainty, he understood that he didn't know God exhaustively.

So what was Paul's response? He bowed his knees in worship. He proclaimed what he knew about God based on God's revelation of Himself, and then he knelt in worship, fully recognizing his own limitations of knowledge.

That's where intellectual growth should lead us, not to overconfidence in our ability to figure God out but to our knees in worship, in awe of His goodness to us.

What is the role of worship in developing a Christian worldview?What are some ways you can turn your knowledge of God into more opportunities for worship?

***This post is adapted from a session I wrote for The Gospel Project's Winter 2013-2014 Bible study on "A God-Centered Worldview."

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Saturday, November 23, 2013

C.S. Lewis book 'Mere Christianity'

Here's a link to downloading C.S.Lewis' book  Mere Christianity  :)

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Narnia and Camelot: A Tribute to C.S. Lewis

Dying on the same day, JFK and C.S. Lewis exemplify two contrasting reasons for hope.Ed Stetzer

4,694 miles—that's what separates Dallas, Texas from Oxford, England.But on November 22, 1963, they were brought together in the deaths of two influential men called "Jack" – John F. Kennedy and C.S. Lewis.I don't remember either event-- my parents had not yet married, let alone had any children. Yet, that day would be significant for many reasons.The president of the United States had been assassinated and the eyes of the world turned to Dallas, Texas. Meanwhile, across the Atlantic Ocean, an Oxford professor collapsed in his bedroom, succumbing to an illness that had ravaged his body for more than two years.Seeing the president shot dead as he rode through the streets will dominate the news and grab the attention of everyone. Lewis' death in his home due to a kidney illness he had been living with since 1961 doesn't jar the senses and beg for headlines quite as much.

But, the latter had much more influence on me than the former.Over the next decade of upheaval, Lewis' works remained almost dormant. Disillusionment following the assassination of JFK and Bobby Kennedy, Vietnam, the civil rights movement and the sexual revolution pushed aside his place in the culture.But turmoil and revolution can only last so long. People needed something solid. There was Lewis, ready to be rediscovered by a generation of Christians looking to engage culture and move beyond the isolationist mindset of fundamentalism.

I was one of those who discovered—and in many ways was bolstered by—C.S. Lewis.I think the first book I read was Out of the Silent Planet and then followed up with the whole Space Trilogy. I was a young teen at the time and my mother (a new Christian) gave them to me. I knew, because she told me, he was a Christian, but I did not know just how much of an influence he would have on me later. I just liked to read science fiction and I loved the idea that a Christian would write such... and then later saw more in the Chronicles of Narnia.

But, it was his other writings that would later light my fire for accesible theology. It was first Mere Christianity, which I would later share with hundreds of different people as an apologetic defense of the gospel. Then, later, it was The Screwtape Letters, Miracles, The Problem of Pain,and Surprised by Joy. 

I read them all as a teenager—and more.I was unimpressed with a lot of the teen devotionals. Having been raised in a nominally Catholic home outside of New York City, and having come to Christ in an Episcopal Church, I did not relate to much of the bubble gum devotionals that were birthed from the evangelical bubble. As a young, recently converted believer, I was drawn to his writing—an articulate Anglican talking so much about this Jesus.Lewis made it OK to love Jesus and have a brain.Half a century later, we still read Lewis because he wrote in such an accessible, but passionate manner about the convictions of our faith. He was an atheist whose life had been transformed by Christ. In a lecture to the Oxford Socratic Club entitled, he said, "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen, not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else."He was able to communicate with reason and imagination.

The same mind that developed the logical arguments within Mere Christianity created the fantasy world of Narnia. And Lewis did so because he was informed and shaped by his Christian faith. He wanted others to know Christ as he knew Him.In many ways, Lewis was before his time. There has been a recent emphasis on telling the story of Scripture. When we were developing The Gospel Project, this was part of our focus—helping people see the unifying story within the Bible. With Narnia, Lewis wanted to communicate the biblical truth through fictional stories.He discovered that people would automatically become defensive if the conversation turned to spiritual matters. Even in his own childhood, he felt his feelings toward Christianity were hampered because they seem to be obligated. The way around that, he discovered, was through a story."But supposing that by casting all these things into an imaginary world, stripping them of their stained-glass and Sunday School associations, one could make them for the first time appear in their real potency? Could one not thus steal past those watchful dragons? I thought one could.

"So 50 years after his death, Lewis still influences countless readers, including many whose dragons are caught unaware. Yet those who believed Kennedy would usher in an age of prosperity and peace were confronted with the very reason Scripture tells us to not place our hope in princes.Perhaps Camelot and Narnia are a reminder to us. We should not attempt to use political means to accomplish spiritual goals.

Our hope for change hearts does not come at the ballot box, but rather as we form relationships with others and tell them the story that has transformed us. Our hope flows from a blood-stained cross and an empty tomb, not Supreme Court rulings or Oval Office decisions.On that fateful November day, Camelot was over, but Narnia lives on.

//Aaron Earls, our resident C.S. Lewis guru (who blogs at Wardrobe Door, no less) contributed to this article.

Ed Stetzer© 2013

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A Very Special Servant

By Children's Bible HourNovember 21, 2013 | 10:00 am

Dad's a servant of Jesus because he's a preacher, thought Amber, remembering the Bible verses her father had read that morning. Uncle Robert and Aunt Claire are God's servants, too. Her aunt and uncle were missionaries.

But I'm only eight. How can somebody my age be His servant? Amber wondered.Amber's thoughts were interrupted by her teacher's voice. "Will someone please stay in during recess and help me with the bulletin board?" Mrs. Powell asked. The kids often liked to help their teacher, but this time no one volunteered.

Somebody should help, thought Amber, who had been looking forward to jumping rope with the other girls. I can jump rope at noon recess, she decided, so she raised her hand.At noon, Mandy asked Amber to stay inside and help her learn the spelling words.

Amber hesitated for a moment but stayed in to help her friend.When Amber got home, Mom was relieved to see her. "Davie's asleep, and I need you to stay with him while I take Amy to the doctor's office. She's running a high fever," said Mom. "Mrs. Scott said to bring Davie next door to her if he wakes up." Amber nodded, glad to be able to do something to help.

After dinner that evening, Amber washed the dishes and then rocked Amy while her mother put Davie to bed. When both the little ones were asleep and the toys were picked up, Amber decided to ask her mother the question that had been on her mind all day. "Mom, how can I serve God?" she asked. "Daddy's a preacher; Uncle Robert and Aunt Claire are missionaries; you're the church organist; but I'm not anything. What can somebody my age do to serve Jesus?"Mom hugged her daughter. "Oh, Amber honey, you are serving Him!" she exclaimed. "The Bible teaches that one way to serve God is to serve others. Helping with chores around the house--and with Amy and Davie--is serving God."Amber was surprised. "It is?" she asked. "Really?"Mom nodded. "It certainly is," she said. "I've talked with your teacher a few times, and from what she says, I know you also serve God by helping at school. You're definitely one of His servants."Happy to think she was a servant of Jesus, a warm feeling filled Amber's heart.

HOW ABOUT YOU?Do you want to serve God? Do you think you’re too young to be His servant? You’re wrong. You’re old enough to serve God by doing something for others—your parents, grandparents, classmates, friends, or neighbors. What can you do for someone today? Can you help with chores? Mow somebody’s lawn? Run errands? Read a story to a smaller child? Think of a way to be a helper—and then do it! Serving others is one of the ways you can serve God.

TODAY'S KEY VERSE: Matthew 25:40 (KJV)Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.

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Questionable Dating of Bloody Mosquito Fossil

Researchers recently examined a spectacular mosquito fossil from the Kishenehn Formation, finding fresh blood—remnants of its last meal—still stored in its abdomen. They wrote, "The data reported herein provide incontrovertible documentation of the presence of heme- and arguably hemoglobin-derived porphyrin in a 46-million-year-old compression fossil."1 How did they obtain this age for the fossil, and are their methods and conclusions reliable?

An earlier Creation Science Update news article confirmed the fossil's genuine blood remnants. It also introduced the biochemical decay rate experiments that give compelling reasons for excluding hemoglobin from materials that could possibly last for even one million years.2

Publishing in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), the authors of the mosquito fossil report did not independently test the fossil's age but cited a previously published age given to the Kishenehn Formation.

The cited publication listed two "age" results for the relevant layers within the Kishenehn: 46.2+0.4 and 43.5+4.9 million years.3 Why the PNAS authors chose 46 million years, an age based on radioisotope dating involving argon decay, over other dates ranging within the error span (38.6 to 46.6 million years) was not explained.

Argon-argon dating begins by measuring relative amounts of argon isotopes in an igneous rock sample. Though the Kishenehn is largely sedimentary, not igneous, it contains some igneous material that holds argon. Researchers generated age estimates, assuming 1) that no argon had entered or exited the material after a volcano deposited it and 2) that all of the argon was only one of the two possible isotopes when it was initially deposited.

However, independent studies have debunked the second assumption. For example, one geologist compiled 23 examples of rocks of known ages and recorded when scientists actually watched them form. The results? The rocks were "producing excessively old K-Ar 'ages'" when tested.4 In 23 of 23 cases, these radioisotope "ages" rose orders of magnitude above the rock's actual ages. The culprit?

Contrary to assumption, extra argon had entered the hardening volcanic rocks from sources other than radioisotope decay, greatly skewing the rock's apparent isotope ages.

So, absolute ages obtained from argon-related dating techniques should not be trusted. And they give different results than a separate uranium-based radioisotope "age" of only 33.2+1.5 million years that was found for the same region within the Kishenehn.5 Is the formation's age 46 or 33 million, some figure in between, or none of these?

To narrow down the answer, secular scientists typically correlate the rock layer's fossils to a geologic chart with numbered ages printed alongside fossil descriptions.

For example, one paper reported, "It [the Kishenehn Formation] contains a fauna of nonmarine mollusks and mammals, the latter permitting an age assignment to the Early Oligocene or Late Eocene"—ages that fall within an assumed 28- to 38-million-year range.6

In another technical report, petroleum geologist Patrick Monahan wrote, "The Kishenehn Formation has a diverse fauna and flora that suggests a range of ages between late Eocene and early Miocene. However, a fission track age of 33.2+1.5Ma in the lower member in the Kishenehn Basin, and a K/Ar date of 29.9+5.3Ma in similar strata in a nearby basin indicate that the lower part of the Kishenehn is early to middle Oligocene."7

Is the formation from Eocene, Miocene, Oligocene, or none of these?

The idea that rock layers represented eras, like those named Eocene and Oligocene, actually surfaced hundreds of years ago when European naturalists decided different kinds of fossils are found in different rock layers because those creatures lived and died in separate ancient times. It became established dogma.

But other models might actually fare better. For example, what if each rock layer represents animals and plants from a particular ecosystem that was inundated and deposited by a tsunami-like wave, resulting in strata that show unique ecosystems, not separate times?

In sum, the study authors dated the bloody mosquito fossil as 46 million years old based on the age other researchers gave the rocks in the Kishenehn Formation. The age of the Kishenehn came from matching its fossils with those listed and dated on the geologic chart. Radioisotope ages were then hand-picked to match the fossil-related age range from the chart. This way, a "separate" technique added a rubber-stamped appearance of independent confirmation. Finally, scientists accepted that those organisms actually lived in the long-ago eras on the geologic chart because, as the teaching has been for generations, evolution requires extended eras of millions of years.

In short, the Kishenehn mosquito study illustrates typical secular dating using complicated circular reasoning and unproven assumptions. It involves deep-time age assignments given to certain fossils on the premise that those fossils were deposited during separate time eras rather than separate areas at nearly the same time.

If the Kishenehn Formation is younger than 46, 43, 33, or 30 million years—if it is in fact only thousands of years old—then that would explain why it still contains abundant biodegradable oil and fresh, red blood protein remnants.
  1. Greenwalt, D. E. et al. Hemoglobin-derived porphyrins preserved in a Middle Eocene blood-engorged mosquito. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Published online before print October 14, 2013.
  2. Thomas, B. Bloody Mosquito Fossil Supports Recent Creation. Creation Science Update. Posted on October 25, 2013, accessed October 28, 2013.
  3. Ar40/Ar39 ratios from 12 biotite grains yielded the 46.2-million-year age, and fission track analysis of uranium decay from seven zircon crystals showed a 43.5-million-year age. See Constenius, K. N. 1996. Late Paleogene extensional collapse of the Cordilleran foreland fold and thrust belt. Geological Society of America Bulletin. 108 (1): 20-39.
  4. Snelling, A. A. 1999. "Excess Argon": The "Archilles' Heel" of Potassium-Argon and Argon-Argon "Dating" of Volcanic Rocks. Acts & Facts. 28 (1).
  5. 1989. Constenius, K. 1996. Late Paleogene extensional collapse of the Cordilleran foreland fold and thrust belt. Geological Society of America Bulletin. 108 (1): 20-39.
  6. Russell, L. S. 1964. Kishenehn Formation. Bulletin of Canadian Petroleum Geology. Special Guide Book Issue: Flathead Valley. 12 (2S): 536-543.
  7. Monahan, P. A. 2000. The Geology and Oil and Gas Potential of the Flathead Area, Southeastern British Columbia. Petroleum Geology Special Paper 2000-2. Brentwood Bay, British Columbia: Monahan Petroleum Consulting.
* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.
Article posted on November 20, 2013.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Costco labels Bibles as Fiction,0,1596330.story#axzz2lMV8OTpI

Costco has apologized for labeling Bibles for sale in a Southern California store as "fiction."
Caleb Kaltenbach, pastor of Discovery Church in Simi Valley, saw the Bibles with "fiction" on the price tag and took note. "Costco has Bibles for sale under the genre of FICTION Hmmmm...," he tweeted.
One member of his congregation felt more strongly about it. “I was completely offended. It’s wrong, and I believe that the Bible is real,” Shellie Dungan told KTLA-TV.
The discount retailer was not trying to offend Christian shoppers. While it took responsibility for the labels, it said the action took place within its supply change.
“Costco’s distributor mislabeled a small percentage of the Bibles, however we take responsibility and should have caught the mistake. We are correcting this with them for future distribution,” Costco said in a statement. “In addition, we are immediately relabeling all mislabeled Bibles. We greatly apologized for this error.",0,1596330.story#ixzz2lMVmjtJX