Thursday, March 29, 2012

Vital Question - What is your life?

If one had asked Fabrice Muamba the 23 year-old Bolton Wanderers midfielder this question, just prior to the FA Cup game against Tottenham Hotspur, he might well have answered, “It doesn’t get any better than this”. To participate in a football match at this level is what boys dream about, and to be paid tens of thousands of pounds a week to do so is their ambition.

Banji Aluko wrote a good article in the Nigerian Sunday Tribune saying, ‘When footballer, Fabrice Muamba, slumped on the pitch while playing for his club, the issue of the susceptibility of athletes to cardiac arrest came up again'. The 23-year-old Bolton midfielder collapsed face first on the field during a match against Tottenham, with no one else around him. Paramedics immediately began trying to revive Muamba, but his heart didn’t start beating on its own until about two hours later, after he arrived at a London hospital. “In someone his age, genetic abnormalities are the most common cause,” said Dr. Douglas Zipes, a distinguished professor at the Krannert Institute of Cardiology at Indiana University. Aluko continues ‘In recent years, several elite soccer players have collapsed on the field, including Antonio Puerta, a 22-year-old Sevilla midfielder who lost consciousness and fell near his own goal during a Spanish league match in 2007. Doctors treated him on the field and he walked off, but then had a heart attack in the locker room and another in the emergency room of a Seville hospital. He died three days later.’ 
Many UK football fans have shown visible support for Muamba’s recovery in Hospital by displaying encouraging banners at games and placing flowers at their club wishing him well and assuring him of their prayers.

A few days after Fabrice had his cardiac arrest The Times of India reported the death of another footballer who suffered a heart attack. ‘BANGALORE: In a shocking incident that again brought to light the poor medical facilities provided for local football tournaments, a 27-year-old player died on Wednesday after he collapsed at the Bangalore Football Stadium during a league match. Venkatesh, a midfielder for A-division side Bangalore Mars, came in as substitute in the 73rd minute before collapsing in the dying minutes of the match……. Players and officials carried Venkatesh in their arms off the field, hired an auto rickshaw and rushed him to Hosmat Hospital, where he was declared dead. "There was no pulse or respiration. We gave him CPR and defibrillator shocks, but it was too late," Hosmat vice-president Dr Ajith Benedict Royan said.’

One hundred years ago in April 1912 the Titanic sank. USA Today commented, ‘The great ship sank 100 years ago April 15, after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic on its maiden voyage from Southampton, England, to New York. Of more than 2,200 passengers and crew — the exact number, like much about Titanic, is still in dispute — only 712 (or 713) survived, largely for lack of lifeboats.’ Passengers that boarded the great liner at Belfast or Southampton might have thought, ‘This is the life’, participating in a maiden voyage of such opulence and magnificence. However many of those passengers died unexpectedly, as the ships band played ‘Nearer my God to Thee’, hundreds of people entered the water and were drowned.

The Epistle of James ch.4:14 asks the question, “For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” This scripture reminds us of the brevity and uncertainty of life. Isaiah 40:6 conveys the same message, “The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field: The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.”

If the question ‘What is your life?’ was put to you at this point in your life, what would your answer be? I remember when I first heard the gospel at RAF Henlow Bedfordshire; I did not want anything or anyone to alter the way my wife and I were living. We thought that as we danced to the big bands and drank with friends at the weekend, that life could not get better. Having been married for nearly two years, if someone had said to us “What is your life?” our answer would have been that it couldn’t get any better than this.

The lives of folk differ as their faces differ. Some may think that responsibilities of work, family and keeping financial stability are a full-time occupation. Others may be in a rut and life does not seem to be going anywhere. Some might be bored, some in despair. What a sad condition it is to be on the treadmill of drugs or alcohol and things seem to be falling apart, thousands are travelling down this road.

Taking these things into account at this Easter season when the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ is brought again into our minds, can I ask you again, “What is your life?” Has Christ died on account of your sin and it means nothing to you? Jeremiah asked in Lamentations 1:12 “Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, wherewith the LORD hath afflicted me in the day of his fierce anger. Yes! He died for each one of us, but now He lives in the power of an endless life, and He is willing and able to save all who come to Him for forgiveness and eternal life. When that happens and the question is asked, “What is your life”, you can reply, “GREAT!”   God bless.

Written by Stan Burditt April 2012

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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friday Update - 23/3/12

I am very conscious that a blog is really meant to be an on-line diary. I can very easily fall into the trap of mine becoming a series of short messages about Christianity. Being honest my aim is to spread the message of the bible and the Lord Jesus and as many of you know I use the internet a lot to do this. On a Friday I record a VBlog (video blog), a podcast and write my blog. On a Tuesday/Wednesday I record a bible teaching VBlog for a website called Digital Sojourner - I am currently working my way through the letter of Paul to Titus. The items are then promoted through Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Netlog and Linkedin on a Monday, Wednesday and a Friday. The links are as follows (apart from this one as you are here already):

Podcast - 51 messages to choose from

VBlogs - 20 + videos to watch

My week.

This week has been as hectic as ever. I have been working in a few schools recently with the children explaining the uniqueness of Christianity and the Lord Jesus Christ. We had an exciting day on Tuesday at one of the two weekly street meetings when a man there and then decided to become a follower of Jesus Christ. After he had thanked God for sending His Son to die for him on the cross and confessing his sins to God he went round the people nearby telling them that he had just been saved and his sins were forgiven. What an amazing joy to be forgiven.

The various bible teaching meetings that I have been involved in keep me on my toes. We ended one series of bible teaching on how God has communicated to humankind over millennia. The final stage of God's dealings with humanity see a forgiven and redeemed people living eternally either in the New Jerusalem, a heaven based place, or on earth. For the bible teaches that there will one day be 'new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells' (2.Peter.3.12 - ESV).

Well I had better go and get on with the next job - study for meetings at the weekend, bills to pay, editing to do and a bit of grass cutting if I'm not careful!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Answers to life's questions - weekly podcasts

Answers to life's questions - weekly podcasts

Many people are confused and heartbroken? My latest podcast explains how to enjoy peace with God and how to experience the peace of God. Hope it helps. Stephen


Monday, March 19, 2012

Friday, March 16, 2012

Taking time to think

For more helpful articles go to: Podcasts, Blogs and Videos

Most of us are guilty of not taking enough time to think. Last night in our church teaching meeting we were being reminded from 2 Timothy 2 that it is important to consider the teaching of the Bible and to remember, Jesus Christ. If you are a Christian then you, like me, need to build in time to your life to do this.

If you are not a Christian taking time out to consider Christianity is probably the most important bit of thinking that you will ever do in your lifetime. Isaiah the Jewish prophet writes in the Bible "come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be a as white as snow". God invites us to stop and consider and he is willing to wash us clean from the guilt of our sin. The New Testament confirms this fact - 'if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness'.

What do you think about that? What's the picture got to do with it? It's a tea room in Pitlochry which is very relaxing to visit. It reminded me that there are times when we need to stop...and think. Hope you do, don't tell my wife. She thinks I never stop!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Movie - the miraculous - the gift of tongues

What does the bible say about the gift of tongues? Find out in this video

Is it biblical to speak in tongues in 2012? Is it a sign of spiritual life or maturity? OR was it a unique sign given in the early days of church history to substantiate that the message of the gospel was authentic and to confirm that certain individuals and groups had genuinely trusted in Jesus Christ for salvation?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

A common bond of friendship

I came back from a week in Scotland yesterday with a group of people from Merseyside and a few other places in the north of England.

The one thing we all had in common was our love for the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In fact most of us would never have met if we had not become Christian believers.

We are from all different backgrounds but the message of Christ and Christianity crosses every boundary known to the human being. We all need God's forgiveness for we have all broken his laws. 'All have sinned and come short of the glory of God'.

The offer of forgiveness is to all - ' whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved'. God's riches (of grace, mercy and salvation) are to all and upon all who believe.

You are not excluded unless you refuse to believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

The question is: do you?

Friday, March 02, 2012


A Thesaurus gives the following words to help us understand the various meanings of the word identity. These are Individuality; Uniqueness; Distinctiveness; Characteristics; Self; Character; Personality. Each person of the six-billion-plus inhabitants of planet earth is unique and it has been so from the beginning of creation and will be for time immemorial. Determining factors of individual identity in times past has been by fingerprints, or a biometric identification of the iris in the eye. More recently, the unique DNA of persons has been used to accurately identify people.

The Discovery Sculpture by Artist Lucy Glendinning in Abington Street, Northampton, U.K. was erected as a Memorial to Francis Crick as a tribute to his work. It stands eight metres high in the form of the double helix, the shape of the DNA chain. A male body on the end of one and a female on the other. Crick was born in 1916 at Weston Favel, Northampton and attended the local Grammar School for Boys. His academic studies took him to London, Cambridge and America. He died there in 2004. It is quite apparent that he followed Darwin on Evolution and rejected the Bible and the Creationist doctrine. He could only see a person as a body, not having soul or spirit.

Wikipedia says, ‘In 1960, Crick accepted a fellowship at Churchill College, Cambridge, one factor being that the new college did not have a chapel. Sometime later a large donation was made to establish a chapel and the fellowship elected to accept it. Crick resigned his fellowship in protest.’  He referred  to himself as a sceptic and an agnostic with "a strong inclination towards atheism".

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1962 was awarded to Francis Crick, James Watson, and Maurice Wilkins for their discovery and work.

It is amazing that this man of great academic achievement and who understood the minute details of the building blocks of life could not identify the One that created all things, nor giave to Him the credit for such a marvellous work of Creation. “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” All creation is a witness to the power and wisdom of God. A number of scientists have moved away from the Big-Bang theory to a position of Intelligent Design, yet not fully coming out to identify the Son of God as designer and maker of all things. John the disciple and Apostle had no difficulty in identifying Him, he said, “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.”

Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 11:5, “As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all.” The Bible commentator Matthew Henry comments on this verse:

“(1.) We know not what is the way of the Spirit, of the wind (so some), we know not whence it comes, or whither it goes, or when it will turn; yet the seamen lie ready waiting for it, till it turns about in favour of them; so we must do our duty, in expectation of the time appointed for the blessing. Or it may be understood of the human soul; we know that God made us, and gave us these souls, but how they entered into these bodies, are united to them, animate them, and operate upon them, we know not; the soul is a mystery to itself, no marvel then that the work of God is so to us.

(2.) We know not how the bones are fashioned in the womb of her that is with child. We cannot describe the manner either of the formation of the body or of its information with a soul; both, we know, are the work of God, and we acquiesce in his work, but cannot, in either, trace the process of the operation. We doubt not of the birth of the child that is conceived, though we know not how it is formed; nor need we doubt of the performance of the promise, though we perceive not how things work towards it. And we may well trust God to provide for us that which is convenient, without our anxious disquieting cares, and therein to recompense us for our charity, since it was without any knowledge or forecast of ours that our bodies were curiously wrought in secret and our souls found the way into them; and so the argument is the same, and urged to the same intent, with that of our Saviour (Mt 6:25), The life, the living soul that God has given us, is more than meat; the body, that God has made us, is more than raiment;  let him therefore that has done the greater for us be cheerfully depended upon to do the less.”

In our day Identity Fraud is a massive problem regarding Passports, Credit Cards and Social Services etc. where security is breached. It is one thing to suffer loss as a result of such things, but it is another thing, to suffer eternal loss of one’s soul because of the fraudulent evolution teaching. We must identify that God’s Word is true from cover to cover and trust the Lord Jesus Christ to save us. Everyone that does that, God identifies them as the children of God, born of the Spirit of God and will live with Him for all eternity.

When Jesus went up to Jerusalem to die on the cross, as He entered the city, some said, “Who is this?” They did not know Him. I trust that you have identified who He is and own Him personally as your Lord and Saviour. Some may say, “How can I do that?” The scripture says, “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved” Call upon Him now and tell Him that you want to be forgiven of your sin and that you want to be saved.  God bless.     

Written for Stephen G Baker by Stan Burditt
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