The First Gulf War, the Rapture, and Lack of Faith

the rapture

by John Ellis

Operation Desert Shield and I share a birthday. On August 2, 1990 I celebrated my 15th birthday. That same day, Saddam Hussein sent the Iraqi Army into Kuwait. The invasion and occupation of an American ally prompted President Bush (I) and his military advisors to commence operations that would result in Operation Desert Storm. Living in a military town (Pensacola, FL) meant that the events over the next few months loomed large over many of the people around me, understandably so. However, the ways in which many of the adults reacted to Desert Shield and Storm were used by Satan-Serpent to solidify my unbelief in God.

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Parents as a Metaphor for God the Father and Baseball Injuries


youth baseball

by John Ellis

Today was my eight-year-old son’s first official baseball game of the fall season. As the youngest, smallest, and least experienced kid on his team, he was excited yet nervous. I was excited and nervous for him.  Expecting to play very little, he was happy to see the lineup, finding out that he was going to play three of the five innings. During the second inning, his first, the game was marred by an injury.

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Our First Love: The American Dream

god and country

by John Ellis

Below is the introduction to a short book titled Our First Love that I’m working on. Lord willing, I will be self-publishing the book in a few weeks. If you are curious as to why I will be self-publishing it, you can read about that by clicking here – a post I published earlier today providing an update on A Godless Fundamentalist. At this time, I’m publishing the introduction with the goal of prompting interest in the book prior to its publication (hopefully) and, combined with the post linked to above, giving those who have been asking some insight into what I’ve been working on.

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Love Your Enemies, Even on Social Media

fire
“And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness.” James 3:6

by John Ellis

During a recent chapel service, Union Seminary called those in attendance to gather around a group of plants and, in their words, “we held our grief, joy, regret, hope, guilt and sorrow in prayer; offering them to the beings who sustain us but whose gift we too often fail to honor.”

Predictably, the responses were swift, many, and mocking. Tweets, Facebook posts, blog posts, and a host of other online vehicles took pot shots at the seminary’s actions. I took the opportunity to join the piling on, too. While reading Luke 6 this morning, specifically verses 27-31, though, my conscience was pricked. After pausing to prayerfully reflect, I determined that my words did not comport with Jesus’ command to love our enemies.

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White Nationalism, Gun Violence, and Donald Trump’s Complicity


good samaritan

by John Ellis

In January 2016, the pastor of a small Baptist church in Alabama made national news after he sent a letter rife with racism and anti-immigrant sentiments to the editor of the The Alabama Baptist. The letter (which can be read in full here) contains a barrage of hateful rhetoric and proudly and demonically crows the unbiblical claim that, “It is not a matter of loving your neighbor. My neighbors are the people that value the same standards of life and way of life that I value.”

As a “Baptist pastor,” Ted Sessoms should be very familiar with Jesus’ Parable of the Good Samaritan. Apparently, though, he’s not.

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An Opportunity to Join in the Fight Against Abortion

assist preg centerby John Ellis

In 2015, the most recent year for which the CDC has made the data available, at least 638,169 legal abortions took place in this country. I write “at least,” because only 49 of the 51 reporting areas (50 states plus D.C.) provided information to the CDC. To be sure, it would be tragic no matter the number of babies still living in their mother’s womb who were killed. Over 600,000 a year, though, is a genocidal travesty that should cause all of us to gasp in horror.

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Marriage Isn’t About Children, Because Marriage Isn’t About Us


wedding-ceremony-flowers-decorations-2

by John Ellis

What is marriage? Ask that question of people passing by on the street, and the number of different answers will most likely match the number of people asked. Frankly, the lack of a clear definition of marriage within our culture is a major reason why LGBTQ activists are so successful at redefining it. Since there is no single authoritative definition, all definitions become equally valid. That’s not to say that many conservatives aren’t pushing back and attempting to use definitions to set boundaries. No doubt, the conservatives in the hypothetical street-poll above would all include “between a man and a woman” in their definition. While that’s not wrong, it’s incomplete.

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