Sky Links, 3-23-19

Complexity of comparing Christians and non-Christians

-Ken Symes (Quotes from Lewis' Mere Christianity, part 84)

"The world does not consist of 100% Christians and 100% non-Christians. There are people (a great many of them) who are slowly ceasing to be Christians but who still call themselves by that name: some of them are clergymen. There are other people who are slowly becoming Christians though they do not yet call themselves so. There are people who do not accept the full Christian doctrine about Christ but who are so strongly attracted by Him that they are His in a much deeper sense than they themselves understand. There are people in other religions who are being led by God’s secret influence to concentrate on those parts of their religion which are in agreement with Christianity, and who thus belong to Christ without knowing it."

Should Christians Drink Alcohol?
-Preston Sprinkle

Throughout Christian history, alcohol was rarely a taboo as it is in some circles today. John Calvin had a stipend of 250 gallons of wine per year written into his church contract. Martin Luther’s wife was a famed brewer of beer, which certainly won Martin’s heart. And the Guinness family created their renowned Irish Stout as an act of worship to Jesus. From Bordeaux to Berlin, wine and beer have always been part of church tradition. But what was once considered the nectar of heaven was later condemned as the devil’s libation.

Even though some Christians advocate for the total abstinence of alcohol as a moral mandate for all believers, the Bible never requires all believers to abstain from alcohol. It condemns drunkenness and being enslaved to wine (Ephesians 5:18; Titus 2:3), but it never says that tee-totaling is the better way to obey God. In fact, the Bible never says that abstaining from alcohol is the wisest way to avoid getting drunk. Think about it. Alcoholism has been rampant through every age, but the Bible never says that all believers should therefore refrain from drinking.

How Hollywood Helped Hitler

-Paul Rogers

The 1930s are celebrated as one of Hollywood's golden ages, but in an exclusive excerpt from his controversial new book, The Collaboration: Hollywood's Pact with Hitler (Harvard University Press, on sale Sept. 9), Harvard post-doctoral fellow Ben Urwand uncovers a darker side to Hollywood's past.

Drawing on a wealth of archival documents in the U.S. and Germany, he reveals the shocking extent to which Hollywood cooperated and collaborated with the Nazis during the decade leading up to World War II to protect its business.

Author Ben Urwand Talks 'Hollywood's Pact with Hitler'

Did Hollywood Collaborate With Hitler? Ben Urwand and Greil Marcus

New Harvard Research Says U.S. Christianity Is Not Shrinking, But Growing Stronger
-Glenn T. Stanton

Mainline churches are tanking as if they have super-sized millstones around their necks. Yes, these churches are hemorrhaging members in startling numbers, but many of those folks are not leaving Christianity. They are simply going elsewhere. Because of this shifting, other very different kinds of churches are holding strong in crowds and have been for as long as such data has been collected. In some ways, they are even growing. This is what this new research has found.

Trump-Russia 2.0: Dossier-Tied Firm Pitching Journalists Daily on 'Collusion'
-Paul Sperry

Key Democratic operatives and private investigators who tried to derail Donald Trump’s campaign by claiming he was a tool of the Kremlin have rebooted their operation since his election with a multimillion-dollar stealth campaign to persuade major media outlets and lawmakers that the president should be impeached.
The effort has successfully placed a series of questionable stories alleging secret back channels and meetings between Trump associates and Russian spies, while influencing related investigations and reports from Congress.
The operation’s nerve center is a Washington-based nonprofit called The Democracy Integrity Project, or TDIP. Among other activities, it pumps out daily “research” briefings to prominent Washington journalists, as well as congressional staffers, to keep the Russia “collusion” narrative alive.
TDIP is led by Daniel J. Jones, a former FBI investigator, Clinton administration volunteer and top staffer to California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein. It employs the key opposition-research figures behind the salacious and unverified dossier: Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson and ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. Its financial backers include the actor/director Rob Reiner and billionaire activist George Soros.

Waking Up
-Pete Wilson

And the “waking up” can be painful or beautiful, and often it is a little bit of both. Waking up includes seeing more light, but it also includes having to survey the collateral damage from the events that put you half-asleep in the first place. Waking up includes taking ownership (if there’s any to take—and there almost always is aside from things out of your control) to all the ways you contributed to the implosion.
You’re waking up to the reality that some relationships are lost forever. Some things will never be the same again. But you’re also waking up to more than just what you’ve lost. You’re waking up to discover those who are still there. Those who walked in this darkness with you. The ones who were with you when you had nothing else to offer and they stayed anyways.
You’re waking up, once again, to some things you no longer believe, but also some deep convictions that you believe in more than ever before. You’re waking up to once again feel pain, beauty, love, and anger. Yes, you’ll also wake up to people whispering about your life—but the real struggle will be the voices within. Those are the ones that you need to fight with every ounce of undeserved grace.
This awakening will scare you at first. In fact, you’ll try to shut your eyes and go back to being half-asleep. But the light will be too bright to allow you to do that.

About The Highly Sensitive Person
-Elaine N. Aron

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