Thursday, March 25, 2010

America's Hope (In Troubled Times)

The following nine quotes from various government and other leaders might be of interest to you. These are taken from Kelly Wright's book America’s Hope (In troubled times)


1.Fear is the foundation of most governments; but it is so sordid and brutal a passion, and renders men in whose breasts is predominates so stupid and miserable, that Americans will not be likely to approve of any political institution which is founded on it.

-John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776

2.Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safely, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it.

-John Adams, Thoughts on Government,1776

3.It is the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated seasons, to worship the Supreme Being, the great creator and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping God in the manner most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience; or for his religious profession or sentiments; provided he doth not disturb the public peace, or obstruct others in their religious worship.

-John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776

4.I now make it my earnest prayer, that God would have you, and the State over which you preside, in his holy protection, that he would incline the hearts of the Citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to Government, to entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another, for their fellow Citizens of the United States at large, and particularly for their brethren who have served in the Field, and finally , that he would most graciously be pleased to dispose us all, to do Justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that Charity, humility, and pacific temper of mind, which were the Characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed Religion, and without an humble imitation of whose example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy Nation.

-George Washington, Circular Letter of Farewell to the Army, June 8, 1783

5.Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle. We have called by different names brethren of the same principle.

-Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1801

6.Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction. … The chain reaction of evil – hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars – must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.

-Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength To Love, 1963

7.The Church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the State, but rather the conscience of the State. It must be the guide and the critic of the State, and never its tool. If the Church does not recapture its prophetic zeal, it will become an irrelevant social club without moral or spiritual authority.

-Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength To Love, 1963

8.Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice. Justice at its best is love correcting everything that stands against love.

-Martin Luther King, Jr., Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community? 1967

9.The church was not merely a thermometer that recorded the ideas and principles of popular opinion; it was a thermostat that transformed the mores of society.

-Martin Luther King, Jr., Speech at Civil Rights March on Washington, August 28, 1963

Kelly Wright, America’s Hope (In troubled times), Worldwide Distribution, Hagerstown, 2010 [Pages 205-208]

Monday, March 22, 2010

Is It Okay for a Missionary to Drive a Cadillac?

“For we have regard for what is honorable, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men,” (2 Corinthians 8: 21, nasb).

Several years ago, I arrived in Chicago in the dead of winter to speak at Moody Bible Institute for three days. The school arranged for me to have a rental car, so when I picked it up, the attendant said, “Good news! You have been upgraded to a luxury car at the same price!”

I walked to the parking lot and saw the black Cadillac Escalade, and it was beautiful! However, I told the attendant I could not take it; I would have to stay with the simple Chevy Malibu.

He exclaimed, “Sir, you don’t understand, it’s free. There is no extra charge at all!”

I responded, “I’d like to drive the Cadillac. In fact, I enjoy cars very much, but I will not be able to take it.”

The attendant still did not understand so finally in my frustration I said, “I am sorry, but I am speaking at a Bible School and will be challenging the students to give their lives to Christ serving Him among the needy of the world with the Gospel and compassionate care. It would not be good for me, even though it is free, to drive a Cadillac Escalade when I am asking young people to live sacrificially.”

The attendant still did not understand, but went ahead and gave me the less expensive rental car, a Chevy Malibu. As I walked out of the building toward the car, I turned and saw the attendants shaking their heads at me ― this crazy, older man who would not take the Cadillac even though it was free.

That week as I drove professors, staff, and students to various places, I was relieved that I did not have to explain why I was driving a Chevy. We were able to concentrate on the things of God, not on the distracting thoughts of why I, a missionary, was driving a Cadillac.

There is a saying used by some, “Others may, you cannot,” in reference to those in Christian ministry regarding what we can or should do. Layman and the rich can drive whatever they like, but those of us in ministry, need not and should not, but be “…honorable, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men,” (2 Corinthians 8: 21, nasb).

Friday, March 19, 2010

Mercy, Master, please have mercy!

There are over 27 million slaves in the world today. There are up to 400,000 children in child slavery in Haiti.

I have over 50 books on slavery and the Abolition Movement. Two of these books are entitled, Slave Narratives which consists of interviews of 2000 of the 100,000 former slaves who were still alive in the 1930’s.

Recently we rented a DVD documentary of the Slave Narratives and wept all the way through.

One story portrayed was of January, a slave who was tied to stakes in the ground and severely beaten. Although January was in tremendous pain, he would not cry out so the slave owner became angrier and continued to beat him unmercifully. Finally, when almost dead, January cried in a weak whisper, “Master, master, please have mercy. Mercy master… mercy.” But no mercy was shown. Salt was then rubbed in January’s wounds to increase the pain, and he died.

Jesus, our Master, does not beat and put us to death, instead He died for us. He has taken the beating and the salt of sin in our place. When we were tied down to the world’s slavery, agony, troubles, pain, sin and sorrow, we cried out, “Mercy Master, please have mercy.” Jesus removed the whip from sin’s master and untied the ropes. He lifted us up in His mercy, care and salvation.

Our Master is the Shepherd of the sheep, the Great Shepherd, the True Shepherd, the Good Shepherd, the Savior of the world. Praise God He listens when we cry out, “Mercy Master, please have mercy.”

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

God's Abundant Loving-kindness

by Doug Nichols

“I shall make mention of the lovingkindnesses of the LORD, the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has granted us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which He has granted them according to His compassion and according to the abundance of His lovingkindnesses” (Isaiah 63:7, nasb).

Recently we were talking on the phone to our son Robby who lives in the Philippines. At the end of the conversation, he spoke of God’s care for him during a motorcycle accident. He was on the campus of the missionary children’s school where he and his wife Deanna teach, and another teacher pulled out in front of him in her van not aware of his presence. Rather than hitting and damaging her car, Robby laid his motorcycle to the ground. He had scrapes, cuts, bumps and bruises, but was not hurt seriously. He said, “Mom and Dad, it was wonderful for the Lord to remind me to wear my helmet today . Without my helmet, I would have been seriously injured.”

We thank the Lord for His loving-kindness in the protection of our son. Many times we take this for granted. God is good. Today, let us thank our heavenly Father for “the abundance of His loving-kindness.”

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Gospel is Not Word and Deeds, but Word Only!

by Doug Nichols

Quite often people quote St. Francis of Assisi, “Preach the Gospel; if necessary, use words.” However, St. Francis never said this. The closest that researchers have found of something similar was when he was upset with some Franciscan priests for preaching without permission, but to encourage them, he said, “Let all the brothers (Franciscans) … preach by their deeds.”

The truth of the Word of God is that the Gospel stands alone. It is that Jesus, sent by His Father from Heaven lived a perfect sinless life, died on the cross for sin, was buried, rose again, and ascended into Heaven. If anyone believes and turns from sin and trusts Jesus Christ alone for salvation, he will receive forgiveness and inherit eternal life (John 3 and 1 Corinthians 15).

John Piper outlines the Gospel in his book, Finally Alive, “It comes as a God-given, clear-headed, conscious embrace of the historical person Jesus Christ as Savior, Lord, and Treasure of our life. Look at Him in the Gospel―the story of His life and death and resurrection and what they mean for your life. See His glory and His truth. Receive Him and believe in His name. And you will be a child of God.”

The Gospel stands alone! Good deeds are the result of salvation through Christ through the Gospel (Ephesians 2:8-9, 10). We are to trust God to build into our lives character qualities taught in the Word of God in obedience to Christ, but these are not the Gospel, but the results which help and prove that we have turned to faith in Christ. But the Gospel stands alone!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Working with Needy Pastors in the Philippines

by Steve & Rita Read

Psalm 39:4 ESV. O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!

Pastor Frank Pata, a poor Filipino missionary pastor trained by ACTION missionary’s, Steve Read’s, dad went home to Jesus last November at 50 years old. A life well lived. Faithful. Steady. Humble. Steve officiated Pastor Frank’s wedding 13 years ago and now his funeral last December 1, leaving wife and 2 small sons.

We thank God that He measures things differently than we do. In this world, Pastor Frank may have seemed foolish to give up a successful business career to pastor the poor. Many of his health issues were a result of lack of sufficient funds for medical care. He died a pauper to this world. And yet, we know God looks on the heart, character, faithfulness in the face of hardship and poverty, on who a person really is. Wealthy in God's sight!

I (Steve) preached at Pastor Frank’s small congregation recently. He reflected on the significance of moving ahead in ministry; God’s love empowers His mission purposes through His church. It’s who we are, God in us, that makes a difference.

Lord, our time here is fleeting. We want to make it count. Teach us to measure it as you do—by the heart, by love, growth, faithfulness, steadiness and humility.

Psalm 51:10 (NIV). Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Embarrassed Without Notes

Recently I spoke to a group of pastors, elders, missions committee members, and missionaries. I was to give a word of encouragement for 10 or 15 minutes to these men and women who have faithfully served God. I spoke from one of my favorite passages of Scripture: 1 Corinthians 15:57-58.

I had meditated on this verse for several days and felt prepared. However, I had traveled all day, was very tired, and my knee was giving me problems with pain. Nevertheless, I felt confident in the Lord to minister to these dear saints of God, and felt I did not need to use notes. Was I ever mistaken! I forgot special points in mid-sentence, lost my train of thought twice, did not finish certain applications properly from the Word, and sat down in complete frustration and embarrassment.

I have come to realize I cannot speak without notes. It is good to trust God, but also remember our limitations. God will lead and guide as we prepare, and then we trust Him. He leads us to divert to other matters and applications. I’ve learned I need to at least have studied and prepared the basic framework to speak from, and God will help me to prepare.

It was a good experience for me to learn from my mistake; however, I feel sorry for the 50 people who had to listen to me through the mistakes.

Throughout the night the incident kept returning to my mind because of the overwhelming sense of embarrassment and failure. My prayer was, “Oh, God, you taught me this wonderful lesson, BUT I ask that You still use my stammering speech to glorify Your name and encourage Your people!”

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Leader and Courage

Is it important for a Christian leader to have courage in the battles we face? The following are 8 quotes I have taken from the “Introduction” of the secular book The Anatomy of Courage by Lord Moran. It is quite interesting. What do you think?

Lord Moran, The Anatomy of Courage (The classic WWI account of the psychological effects of war), Robinson, London, 2007

Introduction: by General Sir Peter de la Billiere

1.Courage conquers fear. Fighting in war creates an environment where fear is prevalent, and unless courage prevails, all is lost. [Page xi]

2.Courage is not preserve of any one service; it is critical to the morale and battle effectiveness of servicemen and women in ships or in air combat, as well as in the army on the ground. Courage and fear are in constant conflict in war, for without fear there would be no requirement for courage. [Page xii]

3.Leadership in war at junior ranks places great emphasis on the individual’s personal courage, tactical flair and ability to communicate. At a more senior level all these characteristics remain essential ingredients, and other qualities come into play. However at any rank the one constant essential is courage, regardless of a person’s position or service; without it, all is lost. With customary perception Churchill, who possessed extensive experience as a fighting soldier, c ommented; ‘Courage is rightly esteemed… because it is the quality that guarantees all others.’ [Page xii]

4.Moral courage is higher and rarer in quality than physical courage. It embraces all courage, and physical courage flows from it. We are all faced with decisions requiring moral courage in our daily lives, even at home – disciplining and teaching our children for example. It is applicable in business, in law, within institutions such as schools and hospitals. It takes moral courage to stand up against the crowd, to assist a victim of bullying or to reveal negligence where others would prefer it to remain hidden. Moral courage implies the belief that what you are doing or saying is right, and are willing to follow through your conviction regardless of personal popularity or favour. So easy to expound, so demanding to achieve. In my experience a person of high moral courage will seldom fail to demonstrate an equally distinguished level of physical courage. [Page xii, xiii]

5.Fear in war is contagious, and unless disciplined can destroy a whole unit, let alone one individual. It can only be overcome by courage backed by discipline and motivation. [Page xiv]

6.As with money, your courage credit-worthiness can steadily diminish, depending upon the level of sustained stress experienced in battle or in other demanding situations. Physical courage is achieved through personal self-discipline, governing and subordinating the innate fear possessed by all humans. [Page xiv]

7.The most important personal requirement for those who go to war is to understand the enigma of courage and its critical importance in overcoming fear. [Page xvii]

Preface to the second edition


8.…the martial spirit of a race is in a measure a crucial test of its virility, and that a man of character in peace is a man of courage in war. Is it not true that the early discovery of fear is as important in one army as the other? [Page xx]

Lord Moran, The Anatomy of Courage (The classic WWI account of the psychological effects of war), Robinson, London, 2007

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Camps for Street Children in the Philippines

by Jeff Anderson, ACTION Philippines Director

I received word from the team that our evangelistic camp for street children is going well with 53 rough and tumble kids in attendance. They requested special prayer for those that are addicted to glue and paint thinner. Pray that many will turn from sin to the Savior, be connected to their recruiting church and for those who need special intervention will receive it from ministries who are on standby ready to help. This year we have 6 camps scheduled which we have listed in previous letters each costing $2,400. At the end of this camp our camp budget will be broke and we're trusting the Lord for the funds for the remaining 5 camps. As the Lord leads, you may want to invest in sending a street child to camp which costs $30 per child. If you wish to give, go to www.actioninternational.org.


*Note: several campers are from families who live under a bridge who survive by recycling garbage and were totally washed out by the great flood of Manila in September. Last week we located two groups of families, one group living in a gymnasium and the other living under a bridge, who have received very little assistance since the flood and are not able to return to their former location. As a form of follow up to camp, next week we are planning to have a major relief operation for the families of these campers and their neighbors in partnership with Pastor Ed Pornia who pastors Valley View Mission Church. Pastor Ed and his wife Jane whom we've written about previously, have planted this church among tomb dwellers (I'm not joking!). Pastor Ed and Jane found these two groups of families through their outreach ministry to street children and out-of-school youth. They are unique servants of the Lord and precious friends.


** Last week Pastor Ed took our 3 Bethany College of Missions interns to these locations. So he is also serving as a friend and mentor to future missionaries. Pray for the interns Elle, Dave and Micah as they are serving at camp this week and I'm sure learning a lot.

http://www.jeffmaryann.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/1q10.pdf

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Flickering Pixels: How Technology Shapes Your Faith

by Shane Hipps
Zondervan, 2009, 198 pp., ISBN 978-0-310-29321-7

Quotes from David L. Mays [http://davidmays.org/Booknotes.html]

The author's career in advertising provides a background for his understanding of media and how it affects our life and faith. When the book was published he was the lead pastor of Trinity Mennonite Church. An earlier book, The Hidden Power of Electronic Culture, provides greater depth for helping church leaders form God's people in today's world. This book surprised me with its balance and fresh insights.

1."An effective ad tries to tap viewers' most intense and emotional experiences, the trigger for all consumer impulses." (12)

2."Any serious study of God is a study of communication, and any effort to understand God is shaped by our understanding--or misunderstanding--of the media and technology we use to communicate." (13)

3."Flickering pixels [the screens in our lives] …change our brains, alter our lives, and shape our faith, all without our permission or knowledge." (14)

4."Technology both gives and takes away, and each new medium introduced into our lives must be evaluated." (21)

5.As Marshall McLuhan said, "the medium is the message." "…whenever our methods change, the message automatically changes along with them. You can't change methods without changing your message -- they're inseparable." (25)

6.Media are not neutral. "They have the power to shape us, regardless of content, and we cannot evaluate them based solely on their content." (26)

7."We need to train our eyes to focus beyond the surface of our technologies." (30)

8."The chief error of Narcissus was not that he fell in love with himself but rather that he failed to recognize himself in the water's reflection." "If Narcissus had understood that the water was simply a mirror reflecting his own face, the mirror's power would have been dispelled, and Narcissus could have gained control over it. Narcissus…became enslaved to his own image. When we fail to perceive that the things we create are extensions of ourselves, the created things take on god-like characteristics and we become their servants." (34-5)

9."Every medium, when pushed to an extreme, will reverse on itself, revealing unintended consequences. For example, the car was invented to increase the speed of our transportation, but having too many cars on the highway at once results in traffic jams or even injury and death. The Internet was designed to make information more easily accessible…but too much information or the wrong kind of information reverses into overwhelming the seeker, leading to great confusion rather than clarity." (37-8)

10.Reading and writing make up a technology that takes work to master. "The broad introduction of literacy into an entire culture completely alters the way that culture thinks. Writing restructures the worldview of entire civilizations." (41)

11."There is one expression that's true for everyone--we become what we behold. That is to say, our thinking patterns actually mirror the things we use to think with." (42-3)

12.Some of the basic cultural differences that exist between eastern and western cultures are the direct result of the phonetic vs. the pictographic alphabet. (43)

13."The phonetic alphabet is linear, sequential, and abstract; the Chinese alphabet is holistic, intuitive, and more concrete." (44) Western philosophy parallels the phonetic alphabet while Eastern philosophy is basically nonlinear and holistic.

14."The tools we use to think actually shape the way we think. The same applies to our faith as well." (45)

15.The printed medium restructured our imagination and beliefs, even the gospel. Medieval cathedrals told the Bible stores via stained-glass windows that gave vague impressions of the biblical narrative. The syllogism of print allowed a stunning compression of the gospel to a linear sequential formula: APOLOGIZE FOR YOUR SINS + BELIEVE JESUS = GO TO HEAVEN (48)

16.Printing also helped cultivate reasoning skills and linear reasoning became the primary means of understanding and propagating faith. "Printing makes us prefer cognitive modes of processing while at the same time atrophying our appreciation for mysticism, intuition, and emotion." (49)

17."The exaltation of reason is the great legacy of the print age." (50)

18.But print tends to devalue the heart. Suppressing the heart deadens desire and tends to produce a domesticated god who resides in our head but not our hearts. (51) Desire is the path to experiencing God.

19.Reading and writing are individual activities. The technology of writing favors individualism over community, leading us to spiritual disciplines of "quiet time" and "journaling" and a gospel that is primarily oriented to the individual. Printing erodes the communal nature of faith. (56-7)

20.The telegraph helped plant the seeds of the postmodern age by separating communication and transportation, fact and context. Previously information was rooted in a context that provided meaning and coherence. The telegraph broke the information from its context, providing information without connection or sense of proportion, or basis for valuing one thing over another. (66-7)

21.The Internet is the logical extension of the telegraph and "we are swallowed by a swarm of unrelated facts accorded equal importance." It is challenging to find meaning and avoid being filled with useless trivia. The subliminal message is that truth is like information, entirely idiosyncratic, mirroring the pattern of our media. (68)

22."Unfortunately, the Information Age does little to encourage the development of wisdom." (71)

23."If we are not alert, the Information Age may stunt our growth and create a permanent puberty of the mind." (72)

24.Advertising is the direct result of the camera. "Images have an incredible capacity to generate needs in humans that don't naturally exist." (75)

25."Images initially make us feel rather than think." "Images don't invite you to argue; they give you an experience." (76)

26."Image culture dramatically shapes the way we think. It also determines what we think about." (77)

27."One consequence is that our political discourse is now based on intuition rather than reason." (77)

28.With TV, "it's the medium, not the content, that changes us. Believe it or not, the flickering mosaic of pixilated light repatterns neural pathways in the brain. These new pathways are simply opposed to the pathways required for reading, writing, and sustained concentration." "The televised brain candy we consume doesn't develop--or even require--any mental capacity." (78)

29."In an image-saturated culture, the concrete life-stories of Jesus gain traction once again. The age of image restores a right-brain preference for parable and story over theology and doctrine." "The shift from emphasizing our intellectual beliefs to the ethics of following is a direct consequence of the influence of images." (82)

30."Depending upon your perspective, this shift is either a liberating confirmation …or it is a disconcerting threat…. The point is that our theology and practice are deeply informed and shaped by our media and technology. We become what we behold." (84)

31.Video magnifies talent, not character. Projecting one's image on screen neither encourages nor requires depth of character. Images direct us to the surface of things. (99)

32.Cell phones make us more efficient and connected but also introduce artificial barriers that separate us. Mobile technology brings those far away much closer while making those near us more distant. (106) The electronic age is essentially a tribe of individuals thrown together from far-off places, glancing off other digital nomads without ever knowing or being known. (107)

33."The Internet has a natural bias toward exhibitionism and thus the erosion of real intimacy." There is an "illusion of intimacy," the illusion of closeness while remaining anonymous with little risk or demand. (113)

34."It provides just enough connection to keep us from pursuing real intimacy." (114) Like cotton candy, spoiling the appetite. Face-to-face meetings build relationships in a way electronic contact cannot.

35."Using email to mediate conflict is like baking a cake without a mixing bowl or an oven." (118)

36.We are still a nation of readers and our culture is intensely individualistic. The idea of community is appealing but it also feels constricting and invasive. Group bonds (and marriages) dissolve easily, freeing us up to our individualism. (124-25)

37."As technologies cause information access to change, power structures change as well…particularly between parents and their children." (133)

38.The electronic age dissolved the barriers of print. Media freely communicates everything to everyone. "Adults are disappearing, and children hold the power. Teens are able to lock parents out. This is the first time in history that parents have limited access to the world of teens and children. (Parents can't read their text message codes!) "Parents are reduced to the intellectual level of a young child who tries, mostly in vain, to decode the meaning of the squiggly shapes." Digital space is a land without supervision, without boundaries or direction. (135-37) And boundaries are extremely important for the development of young people.


39."…digital space is the most anemic form of social interaction available. It is severely truncated, unsupervised, and easily addictive." (138-39)

40."Printing put the left hemisphere of the brain on steroids [and] pumped up the muscles of critical reasoning, logic, order, and abstract thinking." "These capacities require mentoring, discipline, and extensive repetition." (143)

41."The invention of the photograph changed all that. Image culture eroded our dependence upon printing." "The digital age has transformed the meaning of literacy." (144)

42.We may read more but the way we read is radically different. "Internet text presents a nonlinear web of interconnected pages and a vast mosaic of hyperlinks with no fundamental beginning, middle, or end. We are immersed in a boundless, endless data space. These are the conditions specially suited to the right-brain." "The power of intuition, emotion, holistic perception, and pattern recognition are all gifts of the right-brain. The right-brain is the hemisphere that allows us entry into spiritual practices like contemplation, centering prayer, and silence." (145)

43.Good bye left brain. Welcome right brain. "We may be at risk for exchanging one tyranny for another." (145)

44."Our intellects are spread a mile wide and an inch deep. "The Internet makes a flat stone of the mind and skips it across the surface of the world's information ocean." (146)

45."Our culture has a shrinking preference--and even aptitude--for reading books, especially complex ones. If the Bible is anything, it is complex, so it should not surprise us to see a growing biblical illiteracy in the electronic age." (146)

46."Large portions of the Bible are growing faint and becoming inaccessible to the lethargic left-brain." (147)

47."Brain balance is born by restoring an intentional relationship to our technologies." (150)

48.Jesus said to put new wine into new wineskins. The message and the methods are inseparable. "Our methods and our message must both evolve." (153)

49.The image gospel is encouraging us "to follow Jesus in every aspect of life rather than merely with the mind. The gospel is seen as a way of life that transforms the world here and now, not just in the next life." (155)

50.God spoke to the prophets in various ways and each method (scrolls, poets, angels, pillars of cloud and fire, etc.) carried a different force and a slightly different message. Then God communicated in Jesus. "Jesus is God's perfect medium--and the medium is the message." (167)

51.The church is also God's medium and message. (175)

52."By understanding the forces that shape us, no outcome is inevitable." The point of the book is to make us aware. Stay awake. Look beneath the surface of things. "Media and technology have far less power to shape us when they are brought into the light and we understand them." (183)