By Editorial Staff
Published March 2, 1989
By Rob Hart
I was never the religious type. In fact, I had a real party hardy attitude most of my life. I went to church with my parents – but I never heard anything about living the true Christian life. In high school I did what most students do: I got drunk on weekends and hung out with my friends. I went to church only because my parents forced me and because cute girls were there. During most of my high school days I wasn’t too bad because I wanted to get into a good college – which would help me in my overall goal of becoming a millionaire. However, by the time I was a senior I started experimenting with marijuana.
I started college in August of 1985 with the attitude that these were the years of experimentation. I immediately became involved in the drug culture at the University of Florida. I usually tried any drug that came my way. I would smoke pot when I awoke in the morning, and I stayed stoned all day. Needless to say, I missed about 50 percent of my classes. This lifestyle went on for about two years when I finally realized that my grades were not conducive to my lifelong goal. I still smoked pot everyday, but in “moderation” while studying and going to most of my classes.
I began to read self-help books the summer after my sophomore year, in accordance with my goal of becoming a millionaire. Meanwhile, an old roommate, Eric, moved back in with me. Eric had become a born-again Christian, which meant “a nut for Jesus” to me. I was very skeptical about this conversion, but intrigued by the fact that he had quit partying. He had such a peace and joy all the time and it made me curious.
I began to put Eric to the test. I questioned him on the relevancy of the Bible, Jesus Christ, and his relationship with God, as well as stupid questions like, “Did Adam have a navel?” What I found was that my friend was sincere and caring, always using the Bible to back up his statements, and never pretending to know something he didn’t.
Now to me the Bible was an old historical document of the Jews and early Christians. What I didn’t understand was why Eric was living as if it was relevant. As I continually questioned him, he would give me passages of scripture to read and always tell me, “Rob, all you have to do is invite Jesus into your heart and you will understand.” At this point in my life I was an agnostic, I wasn’t denying that there was a God, but I wanted proof. On May 20, 1987, I actually did invite Jesus Christ into my heart. However, I based my commitment on the need for proof.
The proof wasn’t too far in coming. I had said this prayer at 1 p.m. Wednesday, May 20, 1987. At 2 p.m. I started my new job as a solicitor for an environmental group. They picked out a neighborhood for me to solicit memberships, and around 4 p.m. that day I came across a woman who was standing in her yard watching her daughter play. As I questioned her about buying a membership, she told me to come back when her husband returned.
After finishing my rounds through the neighborhood, I came back to their home. She invited me into the living room where her husband sat playing a guitar. They asked me to give a sales presentation, and then offered to make a deal with me. He said he would buy a membership if I would come to his church. I said, “Sure, what church is it?” He replied, “Maranatha Christian Church.” I freaked out because Eric was a member of the same church!
Then it hit me. Jesus Christ was God and He cared enough to show me that He was real. What else could I do when the Creator of the Universe showed me His reality? I had to fulfill my promise to follow Him the rest of my life. However, I’ve also realized that God doesn’t and didn’t have to follow through with my request. It was by grace that He drew me to Himself.
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Who is the dreaded beast of Revelation?
Now at last, a plausible candidate for this personification of evil incarnate has been identified (or re-identified). Ken Gentry’s insightful analysis of scripture and history is likely to revolutionize your understanding of the book of Revelation — and even more importantly — amplify and energize your entire Christian worldview!
Historical footage and other graphics are used to illustrate the lecture Dr. Gentry presented at the 1999 Ligonier Conference in Orlando, Florida. It is followed by a one-hour question and answer session addressing the key concerns and objections typically raised in response to his position. This presentation also features an introduction that touches on not only the confusion and controversy surrounding this issue — but just why it may well be one of the most significant issues facing the Church today.
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Running Time: 145 minutes
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Foundations in Biblical Eschatology
By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.
All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?
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“Give me liberty or give me death!”
Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.
The freedom our Founders envisioned was not freedom from suffering, want, or hard work. Nor was it freedom to indulge every appetite or whim without restraint—that would merely be servitude to a different master. No, the Founders’ passion was to live free before God, unfettered by the chains of autocracy, shackles that slowly but inexorably bind men when the governments they fashion fail to recognize and uphold freedom’s singular, foundational truth: that all men are created in the image of God, and are thereby co-equally endowed with the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
This presentation is a similar call, not to one but many. By reintroducing the principles of freedom that gave birth to America, it is our prayer that Jesus, the true and only ruler over the nations, will once again be our acknowledged Sovereign, that we may again know and exult in the great truth that “where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is liberty” (2 Cor. 3:17).
Welcome to the Second American Revolution!
This DVD features “Liberty: The Model of Christian Liberty” along with “Dawn’s Early Light: A Brief History of America’s Christian Foundations.” Bonus features include a humorous but instructive collection of campaign ads and Eric Holmberg’s controversial YouTube challenge concerning Mitt Romney’s campaign for president.
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Available for the first time on DVD, this documentary spectacular also includes intimate in-depth conversations with Francis and Edith Schaeffer. With the on-disc study guide, this presentation forms a unique course of comprehensive study. While this series forms an innovative analysis of the past, this outstanding work is more than history. Each episode focuses on a significant era, yet speaks clearly to 21st-century man with answers for modern problems.
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Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?
This is the first video documentary that answers these and other related questions. Hosted by Eric Holmberg, this fascinating three-part, four-hour presentation is detailed enough so as to not gloss over the controversy. At the same time, it is broken up into ten “Sunday-school-sized” sections to make the rich content manageable and accessible for the average viewer.
Running Time: 257 minutes
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