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Understanding the Times

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PEJE is a repository of free resources for leaders and members of house churches.

We believe the house church to be the biblical form of Christian fellowship (see The Fellowship Manifesto) and seek to encourage and support those who practice it. These resources will also be of assistance to leaders and members of small groups within larger congregations and denominational structures.

The content is organized into those categories we believe to be important to households and small groups. They can be browsed in these, using the "more" links in the blocks on the left of the page and the (grey) links menu at the top of the page.

The best way to find resources on this site is to use the "Search" box in the top-right-hand corner of the page (that's the site search on the page, not the Google search on your browser toolbar). Enter some keywords and click "Search". After that, the tags under content headings are quite useful for following a trail.

The Fellowship Manifesto Why PEJE?
What is the Gospel? A note on content

One Great Political Idea

I have one great political idea… The best expression of it I have found in the Bible. It is in substance, ‘Righteousness exalteth a nation; sin is a reproach to any people’ [Proverbs 14:34]. This constitutes my politics — the negative and positive of my politics, and the whole of my politics.

--- The Rev. Frederick Douglass (1817-1895)

Waiting on the Lord

If we wait upon God, there is no danger. If we rush on, He must let us see the consequences of it.

---J.N. Darby

Everybody wants to be happy

Everybody wants to be happy. That is the great motive behind every act and ambition, behind all work and all striving and effort. Everything is designed for happiness. But the great tragedy of the world is that, though it gives itself to seek for happiness, it never seems to be able to find it. The present state of the world reminds us of that very forcibly. What is the matter? I think the answer is that we have never understood this text as we should have done: "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness." What does it mean? Let me put it negatively like this. We are not to hunger and thirst after blessedness; we are not to hunger and thirst after happiness. But that is what most people are doing. We put happiness and blessedness as the one thing that we desire, and thus we always miss it; it always eludes us. According to the Scriptures hap­piness is never something that should be sought directly; it is always something that results from seeking something else.

---D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Bible Illiteracy

The biblically illiterate need to begin with an understanding of who God is, and where they are in relationship to their Creator-Owner -- truths set forth in the pages of the Old Testament. They need to know these things before we can expect an accurate response to what Jesus Christ accomplished on the cross.

---Paul Humphreys, GoodSeed Gleanings, No. 6, Sept. 2000

The Pulpit is to Blame

Brethren, our preaching will bear its legitimate fruits. If immorality prevails in the land, the fault is ours in a great degree. If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.

---Charles G. Finney, December 4, 1873

What Churches Want

Churches want to hear nice, optimistic messages, free of mention of sin or a call for repentance. Churches want nice, lean programs, directed at nice, clean families, leading to growth without sacrifice.  They want their organization to become bigger and bigger, even as their God becomes smaller and smaller.

--- Richard Ganz and William Edgar in Sold Out!

Running from God

He who runs from God in the morning will scarcely find him the rest of the day.

--- John Bunyan

The Faith of the Atheist

"Supposing there was no intelligence behind the universe, no creative mind. In that case, nobody designed my brain for the purpose of thinking. It is merely that when the atoms inside my skull happen for certain physical or chemical reasons to arrange themselves in a certain way, that gives me, as a by-product, the sensation I call thought. But if it is so, how can I trust my own thinking to be true? It's like upsetting a milk jug and hoping that the way the splash arranges will give you a map of London. But if I can't trust my own thinking, of course I can't trust the arguments leading to atheism, and therefore have no reason to be an atheist, or anything else. Unless I believe in God, I can't believe in thought; so I can never use thought to disbelieve in God."

---C.S. Lewis (ex-atheist)

The Myth of Evolution

"In the science, Evolution is a theory about changes; in the Myth it is a fact about improvements. To those brought up on the Myth, nothing seems more normal, more natural, more plausible, than that chaos should turn into order, death into life, ignorance into knowledge." (from "The Funeral of a Great Myth", by C. S. Lewis)

News and Views

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These reports and opinions are echoed here as a service to visitors, to stimulate thought and prayer. They are sourced in the public domain and are fully credited. They may or may not reflect the position, policy or attitude of PEJE but should never be assumed to do so. If you want to know what we think of something, ask!


1st Century Gospel Of Mark Found?

by Joe Kovacs

A New Testament professor is setting the world of Bible scholarship on fire with his claim that newly discovered fragments of early Christian writings could include a first-century version of the Gospel of Mark, from the same century in which Jesus and the apostles lived.

Daniel B. Wallace of the Dallas Theological Seminary made the stunning announcement during a Feb. 1 debate with Bart Ehrman at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill on whether we have the wording of the original New Testament today.

“If this Mark fragment is confirmed as from the first century, what a thrill it will be to have a manuscript that is dated within the lifetime of many of the original followers of Jesus!” Wallace said. “Not only this, but this manuscript would have been written before the New Testament was completed.”

Wallace says seven New Testament fragments written on papyrus had recently been discovered – six of them probably from the second century and one of them probably from the first. He expects further details to be published “in about a year.”

The Current End-Time Apostasy of the Church

by Dave Hunt

From a talk given by Dave Hunt at the Pre-Trib Study Group Conference 2005 - excerpts.

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith [apostatize], giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron. (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men [shall be] ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres [two of the magicians in Pharaoh's court] withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. (2 Timothy 3:1,4,8)

Paul thus declared that the major opposition to the truth in the last days would be from false prophets who would counterfeit miracles by the power of Satan just as Jannes and Jambres did in opposition to Moses. Although only God can do genuine miracles, what Pharaoh's sorcerers did in mimicking the first two plagues was so impressive that Moses declared, "And the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments."1 But when it came to the third, "the magicians could not."2

What Have the Wise Men Wrought?

By Jerry Newcombe

Two thousand years ago, wise men (Magi---from which we get the word "magic") from the East brought gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to the baby Jesus.

Christians have been giving gifts at Christmastime since then, and millions of others have joined in the merriment.

But last Friday was an embarrassment.

So-called "Black Friday," the big shopping day right after Thanksgiving, was marked by mobs, occasional violence, and rudeness that have nothing to do with the origins of the tradition.

The retailers are apparently happy, overall, because the sales were big and booming. They were record this year. That's great for the economy. But it's so sad to see us becoming such a rude nation.

Two hundred years ago, in pre-Victorian England, some activists (such as William Wilberforce) pushed for what they called "the reformation of manners." The modern translation of that would be "the reformation of morals." There is a link between manners and morals.

We've certainly lost both nowadays, it seems.

We are truly descending into a new incivility that is shocking sometimes.

Something different every time you look...

Jesus

CT Studd

"Christ's call is to save the lost, not the stiff-necked; He came not to call scoffers but sinners to repentance; not to build and furnish comfortable chapels, churches, and cathedrals at home in which to rock Christian professors to sleep by means of clever essays, stereotyped prayers, and artistic musical performances, but to capture men from the devil's clutches and the very jaws of Hell. This can be accomplished only by a red-hot, unconventional, unfettered devotion, in the power of the Holy Spirit, to the Lord Jesus Christ."

C.T. Studd (1860-1931), Missionary to China and Africa

Why Personal Evangelism Matters

Ezekiel 3:18: When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

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