Christian Thinkers 101: A Crash Course on Blaise Pascal

We need more thinkers like Pascal!

Reflections

Blaise Pascal

Did you know that the first digital calculator was invented by a seventeenth-century French mathematician? In his brief time on Earth, Blaise Pascal (1623–1662) wore many hats and left an imprint on both modern science and Christian philosophy that lingers to this day. Here’s your crash course on the life and accomplishments of Blaise Pascal—and why he still matters today.

Who Was Blaise Pascal?

Blaise Pascal lived during the scientific revolution and worked as a mathematician, physicist, inventor, polemicist, and writer. His invention of the calculator was one of the major achievements of the early scientific revolution and the precursor to the modern computer.

Pascal grew up as a nominal Catholic, but as an adult he had a dramatic religious experience that led him to commit his life to Christ and to put his remarkable mind to work for Christ’s kingdom. As a Christian philosopher, theologian, and apologist, Pascal provided…

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Do you correctly handle the word of Truth?

2 Timothy 2:15   (NIV)

15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

This verse implies that there is a way to handle the truth incorrectly.

Even Satan can misuse scripture
Matthew 4
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”
7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

We owe it to ourselves and our creator to make sure we handle the Word correctly.
Way to many people are mishandling the word of God and making his precious word a tool of the Devil. We must learn how to read his word in context, and not just a verse here, and a verse there.

“Love is “the alpha and the omega of apologetics,”

foolstalk

     “Love is “the alpha and the omega of apologetics,” in the sense that all we say must come from love, and it must lead to love and to the One who is love—in”
― Os Guinness, Fool’s Talk: Recovering the Art of Christian Persuasion

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Rejoice always??

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We are told in 1 Thess.5:16-18, that we are to rejoice always, pray without ceasing,  and give thanks in all circumstances.  Some of you are asking, how is this even possible, how can I rejoice, and give thanks when I face so much tragedy?
On your own power I am not sure it is possible to rejoice always, and give thanks, much less pray without ceasing. Who can rejoice in the sudden death of a loved one, who can pray twenty four hours a day? I think we have a clue to this puzzle in

Philippians 4:4-9  Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6 Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. 8 Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable — if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise — dwell on these things. 9 Do what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.

(2015-08-10). The Apologetics Study Bible (Apologetics Bible) (Kindle Locations 60588-60596). B&H Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

When you are walking with a friend or loved one, without speaking a word it can be special. It is like you are sharing emotions, instead of words. Deep emotions at that. God is with you no matter where you go, he is walking beside you like a loved one. The feelings you get when you acknowledge God’s love is prayer.  So while it is impossible to get on your knees, close your eyes, and bow your head 24 hours a day, it is possible to walk with God, knowing that he is at your side 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

As for rejoicing always, it is harder still. If you celebrate something like 9-11, something is wrong with you, but even in the worst of tragedies if you look really hard, you can see God there. God was in the emergency workers that were willing to risk their lives helping others. God was there when politicians of both parties sang God Bless America on the Capitol steps, and people from all over the planet did whatever they could do to help America heal. We can know that God can make whatever befalls us, work for good. That is what we celebrate!

I am no expert at this, but I am trying a new thing. I have a set of counting beads that I use as a prayer prompt. I confess seven sins, praise God for seven things, and pray for 7 people or issues.  It isn’t always easy to find seven praises, but in this world of constant bad news, it is important that you do find things to praise God for every day. It will help you with your walk with God, and help you to keep your sanity when it feels like everything is crashing down around you.

Please feel free to leave a comment below.

The Flowers In The Wild Poem by Jean Penner – Poem Hunter

The Flowers In The Wild – Poem by Jean Penner
There’s a message in the breeze, It whispers love to me, And everywhere a flower blooms, His love is there to see. For flowers growing in the wild, Blooming without care, Are a gentle, sweet reminder, That His love is always there. The colors of their petals Show the grace splashed on my life, Their petals, as they open, Offer hope in times of strife, Their magnitude of beauty, Reflects His love within, For the message they are sending Is blowing in the wind! Jean Penner

Source: The Flowers In The Wild Poem by Jean Penner – Poem Hunter

Where is the Salt?

God intends us to penetrate the world. Christian salt has no business to remain snugly in elegant little ecclesiastical salt cellars; our place is to be rubbed into the secular community, as salt is rubbed into meat, to stop it going bad. And when society does go bad, we Christians tend to throw up our hands in pious horror and reproach the non-Christian world; but should we not rather reproach ourselves? One can hardly blame unsalted meat for going bad. It cannot do anything else. The real question to ask is: Where is the salt?

John Stott