Persecuted, persevering, praising

This post, on Christianity in the Middle East, is a few months late. Hopefully, the content here shall still be relevant and fuel for prayer:

The Lost History of Global Christianity – A 37-minute address on the historical expansion of Christianity eastwards. Foe example, did you know that there was a bishop in Tibet before there ever was one in central Germany?

Religious freedom for Mideast Christians: Yesterday and today

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The Persecuted Church: How to see and how to pray – A 1-hour talk by a journalist who’s worshipped with the persecuted, yet praising, saints.

Remember the prisoners, as though you were in prison with them, and the mistreated, as though you yourselves were suffering bodily.
Hebrews 13:3

Gospel-sharing strangers

When I was in  high school, I spent not a few Sunday afternoons on what we called ‘hospital visit’. 20-30 of us from our girls-only boarding school (founded by Scottish Presbyterian missionaries) would make the 20-30 minute walk to the nearby hospital (founded by the same missionaries) where we’d sing for patients before sharing the gospel with them one-on-one. In the years since, I’ve wondered how effective that approach was, but I trust the Lord used our imperfect efforts to save some.

Which brings me to a couple of articles I read months ago (I am really good at procrastinating)  that both touched on the fruit borne from evangelistic encounters with strangers. Be encouraged by the greatness of God:

Praying for people (including yourself)

My diligence in collecting blogworthy material far exceeds my blog output. With this post, I partially offload the contents of one of my Evernote tags (I love Evernote!)  in the hope that something here will bless you—and those you pray for:

Pastors & preachers

Family & yourself

Possible strangers

A concentrated course on the New Testament canon

Here’s a profitable way to spend 3 hours of your time: listen to these three lectures by Michael Kruger:

  • Origin of the canon (length 46:04)
  • Date of the canon (length 50:18)
  • Contenders for the canon (length 46:09)

I strongly suggest listening when you’re mentally alert as he packs things in very tight.

Regular readers of this blog may know I’ve read some extracanonical material (Maccabbees, the Protoevangelium of James, the Patristics). I was especially helped by Dr Kruger’s comments in the third lecture on these and similar material.

The Q&A session (length 28:40) is excellent, not only because the questions are good, but also because the questioners used a microphone 😉

To take in the same material at your own pace drop by Dr Kruger’s blog, Canon Fodder, and read the posts in the series 10 Misconceptions about the NT Canon and 10 basic facts about the NT Canon that every Christian should memorise.

That hoarding habit

I dislike throwing things away. It’s a good thing that I’ve moved so much in the recent past (6 times in 12 years), or else I’d have a lot more stuff of questionable utility.

This phenomenon is called the endowment effect, and it describes how something becomes more valuable to us simply because it belongs to us (or because we imagine it belongs to us). Incidentally, the endowment effect extends to non-physical things, for example, wanting to click on every link shared in your social media.

If this topic intrigues you, read Why we love to hoard… and how you can overcome it.

(And, yes, I’m aware of the irony that I just offered you a link to click on 🙂 )