Paul’s Vision

Then I asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’

‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,’ the Lord replied. ‘Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen and will see of me. I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’ (Acts 26:15-18, NIV)

Ananias and Sapphira

Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet.

Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.”

When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. Then some young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.

About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?”

“Yes,” she said, “that is the price.”

Peter said to her, “How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.”

At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events (Acts 5:1-11, NIV).

Compassion on the Sabbath

On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.

Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”

The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”

When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing (Luke 13:10-17, NIV).

Categories: Health, jesus, Sabbath, Satan

Parable of the Crazy Farmer

Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t you understand this parable? How then will you understand any parable? The farmer sows the word. Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown.” (Mark 4:13-20, NIV)

Categories: jesus, mark, parable, Satan

The Perfect Theory by Pedro G. Ferreira

Dr. Ferreira takes us through the 20th and early 21st century development of Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity, the perfect theory described in the title of the book.

Unlike other overviews of the latest thinking in astrophysics and related fields, this book highlights the controversies and arguments still present in this area of study.

I didn’t realize that String Theory was based on a particular approach to astrophysics, and not the only game in town. There are two basic approaches to interpreting the origins of the universe: the particle approach and the wave approach. It’s similar to the difference between seeing light as a photon and light as a series of waves.

If you would like to learn more about a particular theory of the origins of the universe, like M-Theory, then this is not the book for you. Look for something by Brian Greene instead.

But if you want to explore the messy reality that physicists just don’t know exactly what to do with the data they currently have observed, then pick up this book. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Categories: Uncategorized

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

This story about a soldier who served in the Pacific during WWII is one of the most amazing, powerful true stories I’ve ever read.

It is as moving at times as Elie Wiesel’s Night.

I borrowed this book in audio format through Overdrive NYC, and I was hooked from the very first chapter.

I give this story my highest recommendation!

Categories: book review

Jesus’ Reply to the 72

The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”

He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you (Luke 10:17-19, NIV).

Categories: jesus, luke, Satan
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