Praying With Strangers
I don’t know if Sandra Gogel read the book, Praying for Strangers by River Jordan, but I did. It touched my heart, but I didn’t follow through. Gogel’s article, “Prayer With Strangers,” inspired me to begin that outreach. There’s no one who doesn’t need prayer!
Ruth Wright Hoffer
A Difficult Topic
Regarding the article “Trafficking People”: I applaud the church for tackling the difficult topic of sex trafficking (January 2018). It’s a worldwide problem going on in plain sight under our noses. Many have been trying to sound an alarm, especially as it pertains to children. Some 800,000 children disappear in North America alone each year!
I am reminded of what Ellen White said. “We are living in the midst of an ‘epidemic of crime,’ at which thoughtful, God-fearing men everywhere stand aghast. . . . Every day brings its heart-sickening record of violence and lawlessness; of indifference to human suffering; of brutal, fiendish destruction of human life. Every day testifies to the increase of insanity, murder, and suicide. Who can doubt that satanic agencies are at work among men with increasing activity to distract and corrupt the mind, and defile and destroy the body? And while the world is filled with these evils, the gospel is too often presented in so indifferent a manner as to make but little impression upon the consciences or the lives of men. Everywhere there are hearts crying out for something they have not. They long for a power that will give them mastery over sin, a power that will deliver them from the bondage of evil, a power that will give health and life and peace. The gospel is a message of peace. Christianity is a system, which, received and obeyed, would spread peace, harmony, and happiness throughout the earth. The religion of Christ will unite in close brotherhood all who accept its teachings” (God’s Amazing Grace, p. 32).
Thank you for addressing this issue. We must raise awareness.
In the article “Romans 1: What Does It Teach About Homosexuality?” (January 2018), I saw a number of assumptions that I feel are untrue.
For example, “‘Constitutional homosexuality,’ homosexuality understood as part of someone’s original and permanent makeup, is sometimes held to be a phenomenon too modern for Paul to have been aware of. Paul would not have known of permanent, loving relationships with one partner of the same sex.” Ecclesiastes states that there is nothing new under the sun.
I also reject the idea that original “makeup” is of a homosexual nature. Later in the article, a reference to Romans 1:26, 27 makes it sound as though homosexuality was part of Creation. Not true; in fact, those verses say that such attractions are shameful.
Finally, the paragraph right before the summary is illogical: “Since lesbianism typically was and is not violent or exploitive, it also implies that Paul included loving homosexual relationships by common consent.”
I have been a Review reader since I became an Adventist almost 50 years ago, but I am disturbed that such ideas are being discussed here. This seems to be “going the way of the world.” I read the Review to be challenged and encouraged, not to read the same thing found in this culture.
Being Just Before God
It was surprising to note that in the article“How Can We Be Just Before God?” (October 2017), the subject of repentance and confession was never mentioned, yet that is actually how we will be declared just or righteous before God. Justification was explained, but never how to obtain it. Only when we come to Christ in contrition and confession does God receive us “into His favor as if we were righteous.”
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