10/27/13 Ways in which different religions can coexist.
11/3/13 Ways is which different religions cannot coexist.
Panel: Jonathan Switzer, Senior Pastor at Crossroads Valley Church; Geraldine Kay Myers, Director of Pastoral Care for Frederick Memorial Healthcare System. Recorded live at the Frederick "In the Street" festival.
11/10/13 What is the best approach for dealing with Syria?
11/17/13 See you at the pole. And Syria.
Panel: Jonathan Switzer, Senior Pastor at Crossroads Valley Church; Dr. Faheem Younis, Columnist for HuffintonPost.com and blogger at Muslimerican.com. Also, Arn Bjorndal, Executive Director of Central Maryland Youth for Christ appears in the 11/17 show. Recorded live at the Frederick "In the Street" festival.
11/24/13 Is pacifism the way to peace?
12/1/13 Can spiritual growth be encouraged without discussing sin?
Panel: Jonathan Switzer, Senior Pastor at Crossroads Valley Church; Helen Tasker, Clerk of the Frederick Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). Recorded live at the Frederick "In the Street" festival.
12/8/13 History of Judaism since the destruction of the temple.
12/15/13 What Reform Jews believe.
12/22/13 Spark of the divine and self-fulfillment.
12/29/13 Can a Jew believe that Jesus is the Messiah?
Panel: Jonathan Switzer, Senior Pastor at Crossroads Valley Church; Daniel Sikowitz, Rabbi at Congregation Kol Ami of Frederick.
1/5/14 Biblical view on education.
1/12/14 Biblical view on home school.
1/19/14 Biblical view on private school.
1/26/14 Biblical view on public school.
Panel: Jonathan Switzer, Senior Pastor at Crossroads Valley Church; Angela Phillips, Director of Development for New Life Christian School.
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A Harmony of the Four Gospels in English By Edward Robinson http://tinyurl.com/34fvwc (available as text or pictures)
The NIV Harmony of the Gospels
By Stanley N. Gundry, Robert L. Thomas
Hello, Friends, near & far!
Even if you can't join us, I hope you're encouraged to hear about some of our upcoming Great Commission Families ministry events.
We have two Civil War Battlefield outreach tours planned for this coming weekend, July 6 & 7. These will be driving tours (instead of bike hikes, as we do sometimes), so both are are very "family's-with-small-children" friendly outreach tours. There's not a lot of walking, either. Note that at Monocacy re-enactors will be present and there will be an artillery demonstration (cannon!).
1. ANTIETAM Battlefield - Saturday, July 6, 11am-3pm
*** Tour -- We'll begin at the Dunker Church (5822 Dunker Church Road, Sharpsburg, MD), then go by car on the standard driving tour. At each stop, I'll share the dramatic history of the battle, and as I always do, then I'll share spiritual insights for our group, and anyone else who to stops to listen. :-)
*** Outreach -- For other tourists we meet along the way, we will have two Gospel fliers re-printed from the Civil War (one is attached), and one I wrote specifically about the Battle of Antietam (also attached). By showing people what is printed on the authentic Civil War tracts, we can seek to follow-up with questions like what the Civil War chaplain asked of the wounded soldier in his care: "Are you going to heaven, my friend?" No need to feel 'confident' (our confidence is in the Lord!). Perhaps you & your family can just come along with us to watch & pray. But honestly, we have found that even young children can offer an attractive, context specific Gospel flier to strangers and be repeatedly told, "Thank you so much!"
*** Lunch -- Bring a picnic lunch for you & your family in your car. We plan to stop for lunch under the shade trees along the Sunken Road, which was renamed "Bloody Lane" after the battle.
*** RSVP to me by phone or email by Friday evening (9pm) if you would like to join us at Antietam this Saturday, July 6th.
FYI, this Saturday the normal admission fee at Antietam is waived because of the concert & fireworks in the evening: www.nps.gov/anti/planyourvisit/salute.htm.
Our family will be leaving for a Beall Family Reunion in the evening, but you may want to make plans to stay for the concert & fireworks. We have done so many times in the past. It's a wonderful family & patriotic annual event. Set your blanket out in the morning, and you'll have a prime spot for the evening!
2. MONOCACY Battlefield - Sunday, July 7, 2-5pm
*** Tour -- We'll begin at the Visitor Center (5201 Urbana Pike, Frederick, MD), then go by car on the standard driving tour. At each stop, I'll share the dramatic history of the battle, and as I always do, then I'll share spiritual insights for our group, and anyone else who to stops to listen. :-)
*** Outreach -- For other tourists we meet along the way, we will have two Gospel fliers re-printed from the Civil War (one is attached). By showing people what is printed on the authentic Civil War tracts, we can seek to follow-up with questions like what the Civil War chaplain asked of the wounded soldier in his care: "Are you going to heaven, my friend?" No need to feel 'confident' (our confidence is in the Lord!). Perhaps you & your family can just come along with us to watch & pray. But honestly, we have found that even young children can offer an attractive, context specific Gospel flier to strangers and be repeatedly told, "Thank you so much!"
*** BTW, this weekend will be the 149th Anniversary of "The Battle That Saved Washington," so re-enactors will be on site. www.nps.gov/mono/parknews/2013_anniversary.htm. And again, with only 4 stops & little walking, this is a very "family's-with-small-children" friendly outreach tour.
*** RSVP to me by phone or email by Saturday evening (9pm) if you would like to join us at Monocacy this Sunday, July 7th.
OUR VISION -- We have found that giving location specific Gospel fliers is very well received. And the vision of our ministry is to create family-friendly evangelistic outings as an excellent family discipleship opportunity for you to influence you children for Christ by taking steps of faith together. Parents, especially fathers, who take steps of faith with their children present, mark their children for Jesus in ways that few other experiences can.
AND FINALLY, in brief here are several other future events we have planned...
1. Saturday, July 20 -- D.C. Monuments Spiritual Heritage Tour (Noon-5pm): Jefferson, Washington, WWII, Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., and FDR Memorials (~4 miles walking). www.geteternalanswers.org/dc
2. Saturday, August 31 -- C&O Canal Outreach Tour(1-4pm) Three key C&O Canal sites in/near Brunswick, MD. With only ~1 mile walking, this outreach tour also works remarkably well for families that have small children. www.geteternalanswers.org/c&o
3. Monday, Sept. 2 -- C&O Canal Outreach Tour (1-5pm) Roundtrip afternoon bike hike from Brunswick to Harpers Ferry. About 6 miles each way. On Labor Day, weather permitting, there will be many people on the towpath for this outreach!
4. Sunday, Sept. 8 -- D.C. Monuments Outreach (3-6pm) Staying in the Jefferson Memorial area, we plan to do our annual 9/11 Anniversary survey to get into interesting spiritual conversations with people. Come join us!
"Helping families take steps of faith toward greater involvement in the Great Commission!" Let me know if you have questions or thoughts. I hope to hear from you!
301-834-7448 703-975-6719 - cell
P.S. In the morning, it will be 150 years to the day and to the hour since the opening shots were fired in the Battle of Gettysburg. I plan to be there to make friends & hand out "Charlie Coulson, Drummer Boy" Gospel booklets.
It's a remarkable account of one Gettysburg casualty and how his dying testimony led to a 19th century messianic Jewish missionary organization. The entire booklet is reprinted here: www.middletownbiblechurch.org/helpseek/coulson.htm
For info about the commemorative first shot tomorrow, and a unique new museum in Gettysburg, see page 2 of this online pdf: www.seminaryridgemuseum.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/SemRidgeMuseumGrandOpening5.pdf.
The Battle of Antietam September 17, 1862
"Life Lessons for Today from the Bloodiest Day in American History"
In the second year of the Civil War, after an important victory at Second Manassas, Southern General Robert E. Lee made a bold move to end the war by changing his strategy from defending the South to invading the North.
Looking back from our modern vantage point, there are character lessons and spiritual life lessons we can learn from the three main parts of this epic day in our nation’s history, and a fourth lesson in a Civil War overview.
(trust, assurance, faith)
The one square mile centered by "The Cornfield" was the site for half of the casualties at Antietam with over 12 thousand soldiers killed or wounded. Even with the awful casualty rate of almost 30%, over 70% of the soldiers on both sides lived through what is similarly described in Psalm 91. "You need not fear any dangers at night or sudden attacks during the day. A thousand may fall dead beside you, ten thousand all around you, but you will not be harmed." - Psalm 91:5, 7
After First Manassas, Confederate General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson said, "My religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God knows the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that but to be always ready, no matter where it may over-take me. That is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave."
If you truly fear the Lord (godly, biblical fear means ‘awesome respect’), then ultimately you need have no other fears of anything that comes into your life today.
(clear, accurate perception)
THE BLOODY LANE
The Sunken Road is re-named after this bloody day. Initially a good defensive position, it became a killing pit, first for one side, and then the other. Unclear commands given in the roar of battle resulted in both side’s retreats and advances bringing more death for all. Hearing and obeying the commands of the One who can see all of our battles is crucial for our success in our life today. "And if the one who plays the bugle does not sound a clear call, who will prepare for battle." - I Cor. 14:8
(bold, brave, daring)
About 400 Georgians held off over 4000 of Union General Ambrose Burnside’s men for three hours. "And then A.P. Hill came up," wrote Lee in his after action report. The courage of the outnumbered Georgians bought time that turned the battle and saved Lee’s army.
"Five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand." - Leviticus 26:8a
You may never know on earth the impact a courageous stand you take today can have on others and for others, especially in light of someone’s eternal destiny.
(responsibility, duty, honor)
As the title of a famous children’s book says, the American Civil War was fought "Across Five Aprils." From the firing on Fort Sumter (April 12, 1861), to the assassination of President Lincoln (Good Friday; April 15, 1865), more American blood was shed than almost all other wars combined. To remember some of the major battles of the war, I like to use the acronym M.A.G.M.A. Magma is molten rock that flows from volcanoes, which is a symbolic image of the blood that flowed in the war.
M - Manassas 1861 (July 21) - First major battle.
A - Antietam 1862 (Sept. 17) - Worst single day.
G - Gettysburg 1863 (July 1-3) - Largest single battle.
M - Monocacy 1864 (July 9) - Washington "saved."
A - Appomattox 1865 (April 9) - Lee surrenders.
"At the time when kings go forth to battle . . .
David stayed in Jerusalem." - II Samuel 11:1
With great commitment to their respective causes, about 1/4 of all American men fought in the Civil War. Most battles were fought seasonally from Spring to Fall. In contrast, David, in this verse, "stayed in Jerusalem." The next verse says he was involved in grievous sin. There are battles worth fighting in life. Rather than shrinking back, which can lead to other sin, answer God’s call to be who He created you to be. Everyone who lives, eventually dies. What are you living for?
"We die only once, and then we are judged. So Christ died only once to take away the sins of many people." "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not the result of works, so that no one may boast." - Heb. 9:27 & Eph. 2:8-9
By Bernie Beall for "Antietam 150" - 9/17/2012 - www.GetEternalAnswers.org