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  Page 12 of 13
   
November 01, 1996
Jewelry  -  How Much Is Too Much?
by Doug Batchelor

I am intrigued by clever oxymorons. An oxymoron is a statement or pairing of two words that contradict each other, such as "pretty ugly." A few humorous, personal favorites are "military intelligence" and "rap music" (the rap I have heard does not even slightly resemble music). Some oxymorons are more serious, like "little sin," "innocent gossip," and "safe premarital sex."

A few years back while wandering through a Christian bookstore, I came upon a glass display case with a sign above it that read "Christian Jewelry." I thought to myself, now there's another clever oxymoron-something like "Christian rock." The Bible clearly teaches that "Christian jewelry" is a conflict in terms.

The Fruit, Not the Root!
The power of the gospel begins on the inside, transforming the heart while unseen by human eyes. But then it will continue to flow and seep into every area of the life, producing obvious external changes. Just like a plant, the seed first comes to life below the earth. But if the root is healthy, the plant will soon become visible and bear fruit above ground. Jesus said, "By their fruits ye shall know them." Matthew 7:20.

September 01, 1996
Captured By Tongues
Shortly after becoming a Christian, I was hitchhiking from Palm Springs to Los Angeles to see my mother. About halfway there I caught a ride with a kind, middle-aged Pentecostal lady who was very pleased to hear of my conversion. As we drove along, she asked, "Have you received the Holy Ghost yet?" ...
August 01, 1996
Sign of Jonah
by Doug Batchelor

"Then some of the Scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, 'Teacher, we want to see a sign from You. But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign, no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." Matthew 12:38-40.

What exactly is the "sign of Jonah"? That is the big question in connection with this familiar text. Unfortunately, most of the attention is usually diverted to the lesser issue of the "three days and three nights." As a result, this particular passage in Matthew has managed to cause intense confusion, frustration, and even division among laymen and scholars alike.

Three Days and Three Nights
Jesus said that the Son of Man will "be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." Assuming that "in the heart of the earth" means in the tomb, if Jesus died Friday and rose Sunday, then we note that Jesus was not in the tomb three nights even though the Scripture distinctly states "three nights."

July 01, 1996
Honest to God
by Bill May

Sales were plummeting in a department store in Iowa. Worse, the sales manager had resigned in discouragement. The owner placed the assistant manager in charge and spent most of his time worrying.

One day he said to the assistant, "I wish you would move this huge inventory of raincoats. We have oodles of them. Most are not in very good condition. Some are cracked. Some soiled. A few are good, but they take up a lot of space. If we don't get rid of them, we may as well throw them in the river. Please see what you can do to move them."

"Leave it to me," his assistant replied. "I'll run an ad that will move them."

Next morning while reading the paper, the owner saw this ad from his own store: "We have some bad raincoats which we must move. Some are soiled. Some are cracked. A few are good. If we can't get rid of them, we may as well throw them in the river."

June 01, 1996
Fishing  for Men
by Doug Batchelor

When Karen and I decide that it's time to get away and pursue some much-needed R & R, we often head for the enchanting big island of Hawaii. Our friends Steve and Chris Boyl, who live near Kona, always open their beautiful home to us on such occasions.

Steve is a building contractor by trade, but his real passion is for fishing. He owns a little fishing boat and is always happy for an excuse to use it. Though I am a fish-free vegetarian, I do love the sun and water and have often joined Steve and his brother, Joe, while they pursue their favorite diversion. As a result of numerous fishing excursions on the ocean with Steve and his friends, I have come to better understand why Jesus said that if we follow Him, He will make us fishers of men. Here are a few similarities I have noticed between fishing and soul-winning.

May 01, 1996
Last Elijah Message
by Doug Batchelor

People need heroes. Great men and women we can look up to as role models and mentors.
Ministries need heroes, too. Kings and prophets from long ago who proclaimed special messages and displayed examples of courage provide excellent heroes whom we can emulate in our lives today. Amazing Facts has chosen two of the greatest prophets in the Holy Writ as our designated heroes-Elijah and John the Baptist.

The last words of the Old Testament reveal a stirring and powerful prophecy that has often been misunderstood. Take a moment to become familiar with this passage. With the Spirit's help, we intend to bring new life to these words:

April 01, 1996
Secret Weapon
I could hear the sound of his three-wheel bicycle squeak up behind me as I walked down the street. Brother Harold was a living legend among the young people in Palm Springs. He was a 70-year-old saint who knew how to "walk the walk" and "talk the talk." His day began at 4 a.m. with two hours of Bible study and prayer, followed by a few hours on the street handing out tracts. Next he was off to the hospital. As a self-appointed chaplain, he would visit the rooms and share an encouraging scripture or two with the patients-all from memory.
March 01, 1996
Who Are The 144,000?
by Doug Batchelor

Several branches of the armed services have an elite team of commandos that are carefully trained in guerrilla warfare and other special combat conditions. To qualify for one of these units, a person must pass through an incredibly grueling process of physical and mental training. Only those who demonstrate unflinching self control and perfect obedience are chosen. These special-forces commandos are assigned difficult and dangerous missions, such as rapidly attacking enemy troops or raiding behind enemy lines. Their job is to lead the way for the main troops. Because of their thorough training, a small team of commandos is often able to achieve great victories. During the Gulf War, a team of about a dozen Navy Seals were able to create a diversion on the beaches of Kuwait that fooled the entire Iraqi army into thinking that the U.S. attack was coming from the sea.

February 01, 1996
Flying By Feelings
When a crisis strikes an aircraft, pilots are trained to fly by their instruments or risk being deceived by their senses. Pilot and pastor Doug Batchelor takes this good advice and applies it to our everyday Christian experience.
January 01, 1996
Is the Bridegroom Coming?
by Doug Batchelor

If that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of." Matthew 24:48-50.

During World War II, resistance fighters in France believed the Nazi occupation was temporary. They fought long and hard and suffered much when captured. These brave men and women continued their campaign against pathetic odds, spurred on by the faith that the Allied forces would soon come and deliver France from its cruel oppressors.

But, as days turned into weeks and then months into years, some of the freedom fighters grew weary of their life of constant resistance and fighting. To them, it began to seem that the Allies would never come-that they were too busy fighting the Nazis on other fronts. It looked as though France would forever be under the control of the enemy.

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