Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Jesus died on a cross? (Or not)

Today's link has an article about Gunnar Samuelssona Swedish pastor/theologian questioning whether or not Jesus died by crucifixion on a cross, or rather died via some other torturous execution device. The argument centers around the greek word "stauros" which is normally interpreted as cross in the Gospels, but rather has a much more ambiguous connotation than that, and rather can refer to many various devices of torture. 

Further, the theologian's research also leads him to argue that the widely held assumption that "prisoners were routinely nailed to crosses" is not accurate, as use of the cross as an execution device was the exception not the rule (impaling was the standard practice).

While I have no opinion one way or the other at this point (since I am not trained in Greek and will try to find thoughtful rebuttals), it must be said that the theologian is no skeptic and has no agenda. Rather he considers himself quite the conservative and still believes "the man who walked this earth was the Son of God, and that he will return to judge the living and the dead."

Monday, June 28, 2010

To the infinite and beyond....and other unknowable perspectives

Today's link brings us to an awesome blog post, but an allegedly not so awesome person. That person, Donald Miller, you may or may not know of as that guy who is leading the emergent crusade to make religion all about liberty and nothing of commitment. Except that is a very poor stereotype. While at times Donald have a flare for the dramatic, emergent is one of the last terms I would associate with him.

But anyways, for today's link posted above you get an excellent blog about God making certain things about Himself and his creation unknowable to humankind. One quote,

"In my twenties, I thought I understood God. I read a book or two and then believed my limited knowledge of God was all-encompassing. I defended my understanding of God with passion and even anger. I’d associated my identity with my answers and defended them as though they were part of my redemption, part of the portfolio I’d eventually show God that might impress Him so He’d let me into heaven. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to believe I don’t know everything about God. And not only that, I’ve had to admit and confess my desire to know everything about God was really about control. God does not give us comprehensive knowledge about all things."

And I think somewhere in the post, there is a great amount of wisdom to be learned. I also find the blog a very succinct representation of one aspect of postmodernism: Unlike the modernism of man before us, postmodernism knows that it does not know full truth except through a faded glass. Nor does postmodernism pretend to know full truth.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Wrap Up

After a night of making new friends (he's already drawn to teenage girls, help us all!)

Enough with people I'm gonna crash now.

It Is Finished....

...but the effects of GMC 2010 for the Assemblies of the Lord Jesus Christ will be felt for sometime. Three days in which hope was felt, and proclaimed. While the crowd was a little less packed in than last nights service they were there with purpose tonight. In fact in just 5 minutes tonight, $40,000 dollars was raised to build churches in the nation of Chile which was hit hard by an earthquake earlier this year. Churches, districts, and other missionaries teamed up to make it happen.
The KY District pitched in the ushers for all the evening services Here they are ready to go on Thursday night.
All in all a fantastic time for all and for us. We are already looking forward to GMC 2011. More thoughts on all of it tommorow.


The final day of GMC 2010 got underway with three awesome morning sessions. As you know from my previous post, I personally missed the first two, but from all the buzz in the lobby and talking to a few who were there, both were awesome. Bro. Jonathan Vazquez spoke about giving hope to the church, and there was a panel discussion on hope to our families.


We did arrive in time for Bro. Tim Gill from Medora, IN to speak at the final morning session and what an awesome message. Bro. Gill spoke about the barren womb and how there is a blessing there, the alter call brought forth a tremendous response.
I always enjoy meeting new people and we had a great time meeting
Bro. and Sis. Cannata from Noblesville, IN. He's an evangelists who also helps market the Total Church Care materials. We bought some of his stuff and then spent a while chatting.
It's funny how you be connected to people you've never met
through so many other people you both knew. My wife and his also share similar church backgrounds, it was a fun time.


It's confessions time. I slept in a bit this morning which is why I'm here(hotel) instead of there(GMC 2010). However we are leaving soon and looking forward to catching what we can of the morning sessions. Bro. Tim Gill is speaking at Worship and The Word this morning and we will be there in time for that. Sorry I missed Bro. Vasquez this morning.


I am blaming our friends KY District Youth President Jeff Wilson and his wife Amanda for us sleeping in. They invited us out to eat last night and us along with the Wade's (my in-laws) and Bro. Buddy Puckett from Lexington closed down O'Charley's last night. They were literally pulling booths out from the wall and cleaning when we left. One of the best things about GMC 2010 has just been the fellowship. My wife and I are new to the ALJC and this has been awesome for us.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

GMC Night #2

"Hope Remains" was the theme of Wednesday night at GMC 2010. General Superintendent Rev. Robert Martin challenged the nearly full house to preach hope to all.
He took us on a journey through Acts chapter 27 ending where the Apostle Paul stands and tells those who had just lost hope on the ship that His God had told him that none would perish. It was an inspiring time that ended with the alters full.


Awesome worship
service tonight being led by Chad Erikson. They did a song my wife found a couple of months back on Youtube and it's on our list of things to learn, so she was excited when we arrived and heard them practicing "Shout Joyfully".

Ok, so you don't usually hear much about the offering but Bro. Gene Ebright made the offering a rather exciting time in the service. If you know him he's is a bundle of energy and is a very enthusiastic worshiper. He definitely brought that to the offering tonight.
Bro. George Akers did a great job as the MC for the service. Conference (any conference) MC is always a tough job because of the balance between, the schedule, all the things going on, and keeping the Spirit moving etc....Always impressed when someone really pulls all that off and he did.

GMC 2011
It looks like GMC 2011 will be heading to Chattanooga, TN. A town I've driven through plenty of times but now it looks like I'll have a reason to stop and visit.

Sticking to the Theme


Hope is the theme for the Assemblies of the Lord Jesus Christ 2010 General Ministry Conference, and that theme resounded during the Wednesday morning sessions.
Hope for our future was discussed by a panel of Youth Pros. Tough questions dealing with knowing the voice of God, dealing with crisis, having a vision for your life, and (one I thought was a really good one) being unique individuals in the body of Christ. Lots of great insights and thoughts from the panel.
Pastor Matthew Ball from Indiana, and Pastor Paul Murray from Maryland both spoke on the theme of giving hope to our communities. Both shared their burdens with the crowd which started light, but grew as the earliest session of the day was coming to a close. The late arrivals missed much by not hearing all that these two men shared.


Former ALJC General Superintendent Steve Wilson and his wife Pat shared from their hearts, speaking about hope during times of crisis. For those who don't know they lost a son 11 years ago. They shared great wisdom and insight for not only dealing with it personally, but how to help others who may be facing a crisis. The CD of this one is worth having for any Pastor/Leader to own.
Night service starts in 3 hours....tonight no kids church for me, looking forward to hearing Bro. Martin.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

GMC 2010 Pics

The crowd wondering through the display area after service.

Lauryn (our 9 year old) posing with Amy, Nevin, Brandi, and Elizabeth.

Kids Church doing the Hokey-Pokey!!

The view from our seats at GMC opening night.

The praise team in action.

Opening Night is a Wrap

Opening night has finally wrapped and more would have been posted sooner, however my 3 year old decided to return the french fries he'd had before church as we were driving back to our hotel....lovely, thanks bud. Service tonight kicked off with KY District Superintendent Robert Tilley welcoming the crowd. Jeff Brantley mc'd the service. General Youth President Michael Jadrnicek led worship with "Here in Your Presence" and one we hadn't heard yet (so my wife promptly sat down and wrote out some words in her notebook)"Our God". Loved the worship service tonight. I noticed that Thursday night speaker Rev. Bobby Lewis was in the back near us for opening night and he's a worshiper. Nothing drives me crazier at a conference than seeing one of the sessions speakers just checked out of a service they're not preaching/teaching. Not the case tonight, I'm looking forward to hearing Bro. Lewis on Thursday.

Bro. David Akers openend the 2010 GMC with the above titled sermon and from all inidications, knocked one out of the park. Rather than try to hash out all his points, I'll just recomend you to order the conference DVD's. I will have to do so since I heard him begin but ended up spending the rest of his sermon in kids church with my daughter. My father-n-law who's a Pastor in the KY District described it as "wonderful". I do know that as kids church ended and I made my way back into the main auditorium, you could see and still feel the after effects of what must have been an awesome alter service.

Donald Rumsfeld, and not knowing what you don't know and other oddities

In today's link, I present an article. Maybe not the shortest article, and I am not fully through it (there will eventually be five parts to the series. I am on number two.

But none of that matters when you consider the fascinating and kind of earth shattering overall message of series:

"If you don't know, you don't know that you don't know."


"If you are incompetent, you don't know that you are incompetent."

or as Rumsfeld said,

".....there are unknown unknowns. We don't know that we don't know." (it took me rereading that five times to grasp it)...

So in short, the smarter and more knowledgeable one becomes, they actually become more aware of their own shortcomings, and acknowledgement of parts of knowledge one does not know. But the more ignorant someone is in life, the more inability to admit error and admittance of lack of knowledge......

Finishing Touches

Our Kitchen spent most of Sunday and Monday looking less like our kitchen and more like well, what you see above. What started as "helping out" turned into a bit more the last couple of weeks as we are helping the ALJC KY District Missions America (used to be home missions)get a booth together for GMC. Lot's of information available for ministers who feel a burden to come to Kentucky. The map has over 1oo pins in it representing Apostolic churches from ALJC, UPC, WPF, Independents, and more. I'll get a close up later, I think KY is like most states lots of undeserved communities and a few with a church on nearly every corner.

Bro. David Akers preaching tonight.

Looking forward to getting there later today to set this booth up, then service! Nothing compares to hundreds of Apostolic people worshiping together. The Downtown Hilton in Lexington will be rockin' ( in a purely Apostolic way of course) tonight! Bro. David Akers, the Southeastern District Superintendent is the speaker tonight expect a full run down of tonight's service later.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Getting Ready To Go

Assemblies of the Lord Jesus Christ GMC 2010 here we come....well almost. General Ministry Conference 2010 is in Lexington, KY this year and being a recent addition to Kentucky and to the ALJC it just made sense to go. My name is Jamin Tuttle and I've done a few things on 90&9, however, blogging is something I've never done....ever. My Sarah and I (plus Lauryn 9 and Landon 3) will be sharing some observations, service notes, and pics from GMC 2010 this year. It all starts tomorrow. We'll be there setting up a booth for the KY District Missions America dept. Now to prepare for a week of awesome preaching, teaching and worship, I'm going to work a 12 hour night shift, inspecting beautiful rolls of stainless steel.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Tyranny of the Now

"Contempt for the past surely accounts for a consistent failure to consult it."
-Marilynne Robinson, Absence of Mind (p. 29)

In her latest book, Robinson notices how much the contemporary literature of ideas uses the "crossing the threshold" motif by toting a supposed great new insight that makes the past irrelevant. Of course, this mean only the contemporary writer is supreme (justifing a general ignorance of the past, since it was never important).

New Atheists
While she focuses on the New Atheists and their ilk, this is also true concerning the stock market in the 1990s ("The rules are different!") and the housing bubble ("It's not a bubble--it's been going on for 8 years!") & even politics (pick a candidate from almost any major election, and someone is the person who will "transform Washington."). Somehow, all this touting hasn't changed the rules of financial gravity or human behavior.

It's almost like Western society is proudly ahistorical until we can create a historical moment (as if transforming Washington was as simple as electing a non-white President, as if starting democracy in the Middle East was as simple as invading Iraq), thus validating our own importance to ourselves. Historical context is always ignored for the tyranny of the now.

Surprised By Church History
The church is not immune to contemporary blind spots--I learned this morning that the first Pentecostal missionary in almost every major Asian country in the early 1900s was a single woman. Is that something we've built on or largely ignored?--but that doesn't mean we can't rouse ourselves into understanding our past and the past to properly co-create the best future possible for everyone.

It'll be hard. Yet it'll be rewarding if we're brave enough.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

G. A. Mangun Passing

From the World Network of Prayer:

It is with a heavy heart we inform you that Bishop G.A. Mangun completed his journey early this morning, June 17.

Surrounded by his family, he journeyed across the river to the sounds of a victorious angelic welcome. His death was as powerful and victorious as his incredible life. We mourn and rejoice, we grieve and celebrate.

The Mangun family is forever indebted to everyone for their love, prayers, and support.

While leading his local church, and serving on various committees and on the Board of the Louisiana District, Bishop Mangun also served the United Pentecostal Church International as a member of the Foreign Missions Board from 1982 until the present. He also served as an Executive Presbyter. In 2004 was inducted into the UPCI's "Order of the Faith."

The homegoing service for Bishop G. A. Mangun will be Tuesday, June 22, at 6:00 pm at The Pentecostals of Alexandria. Visitation will begin at 12 noon and continue until service time.

Graveside service will be Wednesday, June 23, at 10:00 am with procession departing from The Pentecostals of Alexandria at 9:30 am. Interment at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Pineville, LA.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Master Church Service Script

Sister blog Notes shares this hilarious "Sunday's Coming" video about how most of today's mega church services are organized and run. You'll either laugh or cry.

Don't miss it!

Monday, June 14, 2010

21st Century America = Ancient Pagan World

“In this postmodern, post-Christian, and what is increasingly being referred to as a post-human age, where the systems and technologies within which human beings must operate take primacy over consideration of the human being itself—we are situated in a context surprisingly like that of the ancient pagan world, with a multiplicity of belief systems competing for our allegiance, and where the definition and consequent value of what it means to be human are very much in debate.

For people of faith, this is perhaps the fundamental issue of our time, for it determines how we perceive the complex tapestry of the world we now inhabit and our responsibilities and responses to it.”

-Rachel Hostetter Smith in "The Thread That Weaves Life Together" in Image Journal, Issue 65

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Dan Brown More Popular Than Bible . . .

...on Kindle at least. Evidently Amazon (or is it Big Brother?) tracks what everyone highlights in their e-books and The Lost Symbol out-highlights Holy Writ.

Want to know #3 on the list? How about The Shack? It's all here.

Want to know the 3 most highlight verses in (Kindle) Scriptures? Click here!

Friday, June 11, 2010

College Scholarship for Home Schoolers

Yep, we did it once already, but this is unique (to our knowledge). Someone who cares is offering graduating Pentecostal home schoolers money to go to college!

Don't miss out on your chance if you qualify!

Deadline is June 30, 2010!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Stephen Hawking, so it isn't so....

In today's link we read of an interview Stephen Hawking had with Diane Sawyer. Stephen Hawking of course  being that guy in the wheel chair who is always talking about the universe in ways beyond that which we understand. And he does such talks with a robotic voice.

Hawking has been an interesting figure in regards to religion. He has visited churches occasionally and his ultimate belief system has been up for debate depending on who you are talking to.

Most famously, he has argued that the existence of God can be seen as the orchestrator of the laws of nature and really traces God's action to the initiation of the big bang (and material existence coming to fruition out of nothing (ex nihilo)). . However, don't get too excited. For while this may point to the existence of a deity, Hawking defines his notion of God as "the embodiment of the laws of nature." But then goes on further to say "However, this is not what most people would think of that God. They made a human-like being with whom one can have a personal relationship. When you look at the vast size of the universe and how insignificant an accidental human life is in it, that seems most impossible."

And finally Hawking adds about the possible union of science and religion, "There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority, [and] science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win because it works."

I will go cry now.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Ted Haggard- Restored. Restored to Pastor?

Infamous megachurch charismatic  pastor, Ted Haggard is back in the spotlight. The same guy who fell hard when it was revealed that he was a drug addict and a closet homosexual in spite of being married and a pastor wants to start a church called St. James.

See the link here that covers the story more in depth.

Whose Haggard targeting for membership:

"everybody is welcome: Democrat, Republican, independent, gays, straight, bi, tall, short, addicts and recovering addicts."

 Further, "St. James is a church for sinners — people who have hit rock bottom and people who want to help people who have hit rock bottom"

Now I have no doubt that Ted Haggard is restored in his Faith. And I think him being fully restored as a Christian is an awesome testament to the mercy of Christ. 

But should this man pastor a church again? Are there sins too "big" to recover a pastoral position for?

I myself am really undecided. I guess I would say that if Haggard is genuine in what he says in the article, then his passion for the broken is so commendable. Could it not be that God is making good what Satan intended for evil, and thus Haggard now will help reconcile people who are truly desperate for God? People that Haggard would have overlooked before his fall?

But yet again, I myself could not envision myself sitting under Ted Haggard as pastor. I couldn't get past his past. And that would no doubt be my fault. 

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

This will be the coolest thing you do today

(Caption: Picture of a boy hearing for the first time).

Just click today's link here. And then once you are there, watch the videos. They are people hearing for the first time through something called a cochlear implant. Enjoy the chills you get. This is amazing stuff.