August 2008

Where are the other candidates?

August 26 2008 by Chuck Mann, Greensboro

 I am a big believer in “separation of church and state.” Jesus once said, “Render unto Caesar (the government) what is Caesar’s (the government’s). Render unto God what is God’s.” Jesus wasn’t a millionaire with a megachurch, and He wasn’t trying to become Caesar.                                                          

I was bothered by the recent presidential forum with Barack Obama, John McCain, and Rick Warren at the Saddleback Church. Two of these millionaires are running for president. I am not sure if the other millionaire is running for something. By the way there are other people (Ralph Nader, Cynthia Mckinney, Bob Barr, etc.) running for president. Why weren’t they invited? Are they not “Christian enough?” Are they not rich enough?             

Churches shouldn’t be used for campaign stops, political fundraisers, or propaganda events. Didn’t somebody in the Bible warn about a ‘‘den of thieves”?               

Chuck Mann
8/26/2008 2:45:00 AM by Chuck Mann, Greensboro | with 1 comments

Exercise of little profit

August 26 2008 by Rosalee Wells, Youngsville

Your July 19 issue gave the major portion to the subject of obesity. This is something we all need to be aware of — what we eat and how we exercise — because the Bible does say our bodies are the temple of God (1 Cor. 3:18). The Bible also says exercise profits a person little (1 Tim. 4:8).

The emphasis should always be on the soul — the part of us that lives forever. These bodies are for a little while and, yes, we do need to take care of them. My point is to say it is OK to talk about the body, but a whole issue? When souls are going out into eternity — lost — every day?

Rosalee Wells
8/26/2008 2:43:00 AM by Rosalee Wells, Youngsville | with 1 comments

Can't embrace new ministry

August 26 2008 by Hazel Frady, Lexington

In the June 7 issue you proudly announced the new Baptist State Convention’s women’s ministry named ‘Embrace’ and its plans for missions.

What do you think the Woman’s Missionary Union of North Carolina has been doing all these years prior to the Baptist State Convention (BSC) wanting to take control of women’s activities? Had it not been for the WMU of North Carolina and elsewhere BSC would not have anything to control.

Members of WMU of North Carolina are laborers together with God doing excellent mission work without control. Have you not heard? All men are created equal and that means women as well. God did not create women to be servants for man but for God.

In my opinion, your treatment of Woman’s Missionary Union of North Carolina is very un-Christ like.

Hazel Frady
8/26/2008 2:26:00 AM by Hazel Frady, Lexington | with 4 comments

Appreciation to BCH

August 26 2008 by Mitchell Shields, Truett Baptist Association Missionary

Almost three years ago, Truett Baptist Association began investigating the possibility of opening a children’s home in response to a need expressed by church members and by the Departments of Social Services in Clay, Cherokee and Graham counties.

How do we get started? How do we manage such a ministry? What will be required to be state certified? The questions just kept coming, each one more difficult.

For us, the most important question was, “Who is the most experienced, qualified, caring and professional organization that can help us with this ministry?” The obvious answer was Baptist Children’s Home of North Carolina (BCH).

We were treated like friends beyond expectation from our very first contact with Linda Morgan and Keith Henry concerning all of our questions. It was very clear that BCH wanted to help Truett Baptist Association respond to a need that we felt God was leading us to meet. From day one, BCH has been an invaluable partner in starting, opening and managing the Truett Baptist Association Children’s Home (TBACH). BCH personnel have bent over backwards going beyond expectation to make TBACH a viable, long-term children’s ministry in western North Carolina.

The Baptist Children’s Home of North Carolina has always been very dear to the hearts of the people in western North Carolina. Through our partnership, BCH has become dearer than ever before.

BCH continues to invest more and more into TBACH. There are not enough words for me, as the association missionary for Truett Baptist Association, to express our humble gratitude for all BCH has contributed to this ministry.

Mitchell Shields
Truett Baptist Association Missionary
8/26/2008 2:24:00 AM by Mitchell Shields, Truett Baptist Association Missionary | with 0 comments

Need harsher judgments

August 26 2008 by Becky Wiley, Kings Mountain

I just read the letter “Castration cure for rapist” in the Aug. 2 issue. I agree with the writer completely. I have said that for years.

We need more judges who will give more punishment. It’s like the writer said — for predators complete surgical castration!

More people need to speak out about this and see if we can get a judge or political person to help us do something. Let’s get involved!

Becky Wiley
Kings Mountain
8/26/2008 2:20:00 AM by Becky Wiley, Kings Mountain | with 0 comments

As we think, so we are

August 13 2008 by Jim Ballard, Charlotte

It is good that congregations are beginning to address health issues of pastors and members. I believe there is an element missing in the health care area.

As one who has counseled for over 20 years, I have observed that we have done a good job with many of the programs within local fellowships but we have not ministered to the mind/will/emotions - the spirit/soul/body linkage.

We are eternal beings — spirit and soul in temporal bodies. As we think — so we are. Multitudes of members have been impacted negatively by dysfunctional issues from their past — family of origin issues that haunted childhoods and hurt them as adults.

It is my conviction that churches need to deal with the hurts of abuse, rejection, separation, divorce and molestation, etc., within our congregations and associations.

Many of our physical pains originate from spiritual, mental and emotional stressors that greatly impact the immune system.

I would welcome the opportunity to talk with individuals, churches and associations regarding how to implement a ministry to assist in dealing with the deep inner woundedness within their fellowships of faith.

Jim Ballard

8/13/2008 2:19:00 AM by Jim Ballard, Charlotte | with 0 comments

Column too close to socialism

August 13 2008 by Clyde Pearce, Raleigh

I am always discouraged when someone uses veiled faith to panhandle a political agenda, such as that in the editorial by Tom Ehrich entitled "A long overdue conversation," Aug. 2, 2008.

Following is an excerpt directly from Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto: "The theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: abolition of private property. We Communists have been reproached with the desire of abolishing the right of personally acquiring property as the fruit of a man's own labor. Which property is alleged to be the groundwork of all personal freedom, activity and independence. Capital is not only personal, it is a social power. When, therefore, capital is converted into common property, it is only the social character of the property that is changed. It loses its class character."

Now here are a few excerpts from Tom Ehrich's editorial: "from an ethical standpoint, is the sudden turn of home ownership from dream to nightmare such a bad thing? Americans have bought the dream offered by clever postwar developers that sweet abodes surrounded by picket fences were America's prize for the winning. So entranced were we by gleaming suburbs ... that we forgot Jesus' clear teachings, like ... holding property in common."

I just don't think I have ever read anything from an American publication that had more disdain for how God has blessed America and a complete lack of compassion for those people who have lost their jobs and houses. We need to pray that God will revive our nation and turn our hearts back to Him, (2 Chronicles 7:14), so that He can restore His blessings across our land.

God does not require that we change our whole political system as Mr. Ehrich alludes to, He simply asks that we love Him with all our heart.

Clyde Pearce

8/13/2008 2:17:00 AM by Clyde Pearce, Raleigh | with 0 comments

Maximizing Christ

August 13 2008 by James Helvey, Winston Salem

Dale Steele makes a vital point in his letter of concern about understanding and sharing Christ, "the way, the truth and the life." The problem is that too many Christians, as well as non-Christians, fail to appreciate the spiritual fullness of the Messiah or Son of God. They tend either to dismiss Him as a relic of history or a non-existent being. Too often they even want to reduce Him to just another human, failing to appreciate the tremendous insight and meaning of affirming our Trinitarian Lord, and they miss the eternal significance of Jesus of Nazareth, as one with our Heavenly Father.

Consequently, Christians can be as guilty as non-Christians in nullifying the spiritual and eternal wonder of Christ manifested in His endless acts of kindness and words of encouragement and conciliation when they dismiss the spiritual truths of great literature and philosophy from cultures around the world.

Truths of God are preserved for us in the New Testament, but it is not insignificant that God spoke creation into being and made language the distinctive medium of communication for human beings. The problem is humans have made the words of dogma divisive by failing to understand them as only a means of manifesting Christ and faith. Our Creator and Savior Himself is more than words in a book (John 1); they are "the way, the truth and the life."

To understand this is a continual challenge to Christians and theologues in every culture as well as all human beings, just as it was to the disciples of Jesus and people of Samaria as well as Judea (John 4), but it is vital to making Christ relevant to people everywhere as the people of God know and show (Jer. 31:33-34).

James Helvey
Winston Salem

8/13/2008 2:14:00 AM by James Helvey, Winston Salem | with 0 comments

Rape is not about sex

August 13 2008 by Norma Moore, Greensboro

I am not usually incensed/disappointed enough to reply to a letter of idiocy such as seen in "Tar Heel Voices" (print, Aug. 2; online, July 28). I especially am not prone to discuss genitalia in print either but to think there is a human being still living/breathing in this 2lst century who still thinks rape is about sex and not about a sick need to control is beyond my comprehension. A suggestion to cut off both hands of the perpetrator makes just as much sense!

Norma Moore

8/13/2008 2:11:00 AM by Norma Moore, Greensboro | with 0 comments