Why (Some) Christians Blame Japan

As with hurricane Katrina—which some blamed on legalized abortion—Christians found a way to link disaster to God’s rage. “Japan did it to themselves,” they’re saying. “God is bringing his curse for going against Israel.”

While most of the world prays for the Japanese people, and sends support, a vocal few claim that an angry God is punishing Japan for their aid to Palestine. Why he chose Japan, and not the other forty-six countries aiding Palestine, is a mystery.

How can anyone believe God is pleased with such suffering? Reasons vary, but the top ones are:

  • They’re Scared. By believing that people who suffer and die did something to deserve it—something they didn’t do—they feel safer. They think that God would never allow them to be caught in such a tragedy, and that belief eases their fear.
  • They feel powerless. Earthquakes, tsunamis, and radiation leaks are out of our control. Believing the events are linked to something they can control (behavior) helps them feel empowered.
  • They’re Self-Centered. Whatever makes headlines, in their view, must somehow revolve around them. Good things happen to those who agree with them, they think; and bad things happen to those who disagree.

Whatever their reasons, the Bible does not support their position. The book of Job is about a righteous man who suffered. His friends told him that he must have done something wrong. In the end, God calls Job’s friends into account, and makes them compensate Job for falsely accusing him. Jesus also denied the notion that those who suffer are worse sinners than anyone else. (Luke 13:1-5)

“He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” (Matthew 5:45) Weather happens. To everyone.

Please pray for the people of Japan, and text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to Japan relief.

Copyright 2011, Kathryn A. Frazier, All Rights Reserved  shevarim.com

Should Christians be barred from fostering children?

Conservative Christians are unfit to serve as foster parents, because their beliefs regarding sexuality may “infect” children in their care, the High Court of the UK ruled February 28, 2011.

Eunice and Owen Johns applied to foster a child in 2007. They expressed their desire to love any child, but their religious beliefs prevented them from teaching the child that homosexuality is good. The battle was on. The High Court finally ruled that “That there is no religious discrimination against the Johns because they were being excluded from fostering due to their moral views on sexual ethics and not their Christian beliefs”, even though their moral views on sexual ethics are based on their Christian beliefs.

The High Court’s decision is in line with United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), protecting the child’s international human right of sexual expression, above the right of the parent’s religious expression. If the United States ratifies the UN treaty, the same law would apply in the US.

Andrea Minichiello Williams, CEO of Christian Concern and the Christian Legal Centre said, “If Christian morals are harmful to children and unacceptable to the State, then how many years do we have before natural children start being taken away from Christians?”

As a Christian, I believe minors should be encouraged to remain abstinent, regardless of their sexual orientation, because they are children. But I know that doesn’t always play out in real life.

What do you think?

To learn more about this case, visit  Christian Concern >>here<<

Copyright 2011, Kathryn A. Frazier, all rights reserved. Shevarim.com

Orthodox Jews protest at the home of Messianic Jews

Warning poster against Polly Sigulim

Polly Sigulim is a law-abiding, Jewish woman living in Arad, Israel. She’s a widow, the mother of three children, and takes in foster children. She keeps the seven feast days of Israel, and she keeps Sabbath. She’s also a believer in Jesus, and attends a mixed congregation of Messianic Jews and Christians.

All of her foster children are either from Messianic Jewish or Christian families. Years ago, a Jewish girl who visited her family asked one of the foster children for a New Testament. After reading the New Testament twice, the girl chose to become a Christian. At the age of 18, the girl was baptized.

Since then, every Sabbath, Polly and her family have been subjected to demonstrations outside of her home by the Hasidim (Orthodox Jews) of Arad. They gather in the parking area outside of Polly’s home, take pictures of anyone who comes or goes, and yell insults and obscenities, including, “Jesus, the bastard,” over loudspeakers.

Once a year, in March, the Hasidim stage their big demonstration, with hundreds of demonstrators protesting the existence of Messianic Jews in Arad, in front of Polly’s home. They put up posters with Polly’s name and face, warning people to stay away from the “dangerous missionary.”

Polly says, “Of course it saddens us to see and hear our Jewish brothers outside our homes screaming curses against us and our families, trying to entice our neighbors to join their efforts to make our lives so miserable that we would choose to just pack everything and flee our birth-right country, Israel.”

The word Hasidim means literally, “loving kindness”. Do you think the Hasidim are living up to their name? Are they right to protest? Is eight years enough, or should they continue until Polly and her family moves? Should Polly have kept her foster child from giving another child a New Testament, considering the girl was still a minor?

Read more about Polly Sigulim and the protests at the following:

Messianic Jews Fight Public Slurs in Israel

Hate-Fest Demo Against Messianic Jews Returns to Arad

Some information for this article was obtained from an article by Alfred Muller at http://www.angelfire.com/super/redhorse/2004/07_05/04/01.htm

Copyright 2011, Kathryn A. Frazier, all rights reserved. Shevarim.com

Shevarim: yearning for intervention

Isaac carried the wood. Abraham carried the fire and the knife. Father and son climbed Mt. Moriah together. No doubt Isaac arranged the wood on the altar as he had many times before. When he asked his father, “Where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb.”

We don’t know if Abraham looked his son in the eyes, as he bound the young man and laid him on the altar. Did Isaac argue for his life? Did he leave a last word for his mother? We don’t know. Might he have simply asked, why? My mother’s heart tells me that even though it isn’t recorded, there were sobbing cries, if only in their souls.

We do know that as Abraham prepared to plunge the knife into his son, God cried out, “Abraham! Abraham!” I wonder if Abraham dropped the knife in relief as he called back, “I’m here, Lord!”

God said, “do not lay a hand on the boy!” And, just as Abraham believed, God himself provided for the sacrifice. A ram, caught by its horns in a nearby thicket, suddenly became visible.

Since the time of Abraham, the ram’s horns symbolize God’s intervention. His mercy. His goodness. His can-you-believe-how-amazing-this-is, just in the nick of time, rescue.

Shevarim is the name given to three medium, wailing, blasts of the shofar, a trumpet fashioned out of a ram’s horn. It has the broken sound of sobbing cries. When we hear it, we long for intervention, in the same way that Abraham and Isaac must have yearned for rescue, yearned not to be separated, yearned for another chance at life.

Listen to shevarim by clicking >>HERE<<,  and then believe God himself will provide a can-you-believe-how-amazing-this-is, just in the nick of time, rescue in your life.

Copyright 2011, Kathryn A. Frazier  All rights reserved. shevarim.com

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