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2009 Issue 3

“What’s your sign?” Maybe you are a Leo or a Libra, a Virgo or an Aquarius. Some people believe their astrological sign affects or determines their future. Well, one thing is for certain, your LIFEVIEW does determine your future! Do you know what your “Lifeview” is? Most people can tell you what their “sign” is but they have no idea what their “lifeview” is. The philosopher Socrates once said, “The unexamined life isn’t worth living.” I want to ask you to examine your lifeview!

What is a LIFEVIEW? A lifeview is how you view life, the world, how you understand the origin, meaning, purpose, and goal of life, what happens after you die, etc. This is also called a “worldview,” how you look at and understand the world, its existence and purpose. How does this affect your life? Well, if you believe there is no God, that all things just exist by chance, that will affect how you live. But if you believe there is a God and the Bible is His word, then that will affect how you live. The next time you watch a TV program or movie ask what the lifeview of the actors or story is. For example, you will find one kind of lifeview reflected on “Little House on the Prairie” and different one on afternoon “Soap operas.”

William Paul Young’s theological novel, The Shack, is a contemporary phenomenon that pastors, elders, and deacons must reckon with. Why? One reason is that—like it or not—so many people (church people and those outside the church) are reading the book.

Here are some of the specifics: Th e Shack was number one on the New York Times bestseller list, and since its original publication in 2007 (in spite of being self-published by an unknown author through an unknown publisher) it has sold two million copies. At the time this review was written, The Shack had received a total of over two thousand customer reviews on Amazon.com (most books get only half a dozen or fewer customer reviews). Two-thirds of the reviews of The Shack give the book the highest rating (five stars), many of the reviewers testifying “the book changed my life.”

In his story of the wicked farmers, Jesus prophetically taught that the nation’s leaders would kill him, the Son, and in his application of his story to his original auditors he taught that he would be raised from death to glory and that the destiny of all mankind would turn on their relation to him (Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10-11; Luke 20:17-18). Two of the best-attested facts of history are his crucifixion and resurrection. But what does Muhammad say about this teaching of the man whom he describes elsewhere as a “true prophet”?

Well, in Sura 4, “Women,” verse 157, Muhammad denies that Jesus was crucified. He writes: “[The Jews] did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but they thought they did.” According to Muslim tradition the Jews crucified a man who resembled Jesus, perhaps even Judas. Jesus himself was taken unharmed directly to Heaven (see Sura 3, “The Imrans,” verse 55, and Sura 4, “Women,” verses 156-158). This means as well, of course, that Islam denies Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. With these denials Muhammad attacks Christianity’s central teaching of Jesus’ cross and resurrection, both of which are necessary to his substitutionary atonement.

There are basically two major systems by which nations can organize their economic affairs: Capitalism (private ownership and control of the economy) and Socialism (state ownership and control of the economy).

But there are two central assumptions underlying Socialism that should rule it out as an option for Christians’ support. Two foundational issues in the debate about economic systems involve human nature and the existence of private property. Underlying pure Socialism are the assumptions that human nature can be transformed by human institutions and that private property is an evil. Both of these assumptions contradict the Bible.

Readers may have seen articles by Greg Uttinger in the Chalcedon Report. In this short book he gives an overview of the book of Revelation.

Publisher, Gerald Nordskog writes, “I, too, was one who was influenced three decades ago by the interpretation of Hal Lindsey’s theoretical theological views in The Late Great Planet Earth, a strange version of the futurist viewpoint of the end times. In The Gospel According to Revelation, Greg Uttinger sees much of the book of Revelation fulfilled in God’s covenant acts in the first century, but also recognizes that its prophesies hold out a glorious future for the kingdom of Christ before He returns in glory.”

There are recommendations of the book from many people including R. Albert Mohler, Joel Belz, and John Piper.

Alex and Brett Harris are the younger twin brothers of Joshua Harris, pastor and author of I Kissed Dating Goodbye. At the time of publication the homeschooled twins were 19 years old. Recent advertisements for Patrick Henry College in Va. feature them as students. When they were 16 their father put them on an intensive summer reading program. Still at age 16 they were interns at the Alabama Supreme Court. The next year they began the popular teenage blog grown to a web site called TheRebelution.com