Columns

Should New Converts Take The Bible Seriously?

March 01, 2003 / Jere Patzer

Something happened a few Sabbaths ago that reminded me how important simple belief in the Bible is to our efforts at personal evangelism. It may also be an important factor in the faith of our more “veteran” members.

A visiting friend of mine stated in our Sabbath School class that we should not take the Genesis 1 creation account too literally. He went on to explain that if the sun wasn’t created until the fourth day, there culd not have been an evening and a morning during the first three days of creation, as described in the Bible.

Me, Witness?

March 01, 2003

When I hear the word “witnessing,” I think of Bible-thumping, street-chanting, in-your-face-or-I’ll-beat-ya-black-n-blue holy rollers.

Ron Rearick tells about this approach in his book Iceman. He was a Mafia strongman whose last crime was hijacking a plane for a million dollars.

Then, after meeting Jesus in prison, he was miraculously released by the same judge who had sentenced him to 25 years. Upon his release, he set out to witness.

African Americans Serving God and Community

February 01, 2003 / Alphonso McCarthy

For more than 77 years, February has been designated black history month to honor and recognize the accomplishments of African Americans in the United States of America. During this month, the national black anthem is sung at the start of all major events. The words of this song remind us of our heritage and our journey from being free in Africa, slaves in America, emancipated by Lincoln, and our commitment to God and country.

Sick and Wired

February 01, 2003

I felt like I’d been dragged through a carwash of Brillo pads drenched in battery acid. Every part of my body ached, including the skin on my elbow where Tubba, a buddy of mine in fifth grade, said that humans have no feelings. A high fever, swollen throat, and itchy eyes all contributed to my misery.

My trip to Guam wasn’t supposed to be like this. For nine months I had been anticipating the opportunity to speak at camp meeting in this tropical paradise. But when the plane landed, all I wanted was to sleep until the Second Coming.

New Views on Christian Jobs

February 01, 2003 / Standley Gellineau

In recent decades there has been a growing trend toward Seventh-day Adventists entering civil courts and state service. This movement is a departure from the earlier traditional view of not considering professions such as law enforcement and fire prevention as appropriate for church members. The rationales for the traditional views are many.

Walla Walla College Now More Than Ever

January 01, 2003 / Jere Patzer

As I attended the moving inauguration service last month for Jon Dybdahl as our new Walla Walla College president, I thought about a different gathering I had taken part in just a few months before.

In that meeting, North Pacific Union Conference and local conference administrators discussed some of the significant challenges facing the Church in the Northwest and beyond.

That meeting also gave us an opportunity to get better acquainted with Dr. Dybdahl and confirmed our belief that God has guided his selection as president.

Just Two Things

January 01, 2003

Author Richard Carlson has made a fortune, reminding us in his “New York Times” bestseller that there are just two things we need to remember: Don’t sweat the small stuff, and it’s all small stuff.

It reminds me of something Dr. Jon Dybdahl has been doing at Walla Walla College, since his arrival this fall—telling us there are just two things we need to remember. No doubt his administration will be marked by an unrelenting emphasis on these two things.

Still on the Cutting Edge

December 01, 2002 / Jere Patzer

I had the recent privilege of meeting with some key Christian community leaders. They wanted to know what was happening in the Adventist Church. I told them about the new DVD initiative for reaching people with a knowledge of Jesus and His biblical truths.

After the meeting, one of the top executives of the Billy Graham organization was so impressed, he asked if I would share a copy with him. Of course, I did.

I Must Be Moving On

December 01, 2002

Some Adventists “stay put” longer than others. God doesn’t mind stability—of that I’m certain. My Prussian ancestors would still be in Germany today, but for Kaiser Frederik Wilhelm.

You see, those Lutheran Schwiesows (original spelling) were happy farmers, pacifists all. But one by one, as 10 brothers came of military age between 1835 and 1870, they bought tickets to America rather than add their sabres to the Kaiser’s sword-rattle. Permanence is good. But tides change and winds shift.

His Legacy Speaks Volumes

December 01, 2002

Often a person and a product become so intertwined that identity lines blur and we associate one automatically with the other.

For Seattle Mariner fans, it’s Edgar Martínez. For GLEANER readers in the past decade or so, it’s been Ed Schwisow.

We’ve been blessed by Ed’s commitment and journalistic skill. He is a consummate writer, a craftsman with words. I have never tired of watching him, as editor, breathe life into otherwise awkward phrases.