garden-eden

God, not man, preserves Garden of Eden for eternity

(BNC) by J. Randal Matheny — Last week a religious news site ran the headline, “Iraq: ‘Garden of Eden’ named World Heritage Site.” The headline doesn’t reflect the text of the report very well; it’s clickbait.

The headline is ironic. That garden, lost to mankind as the place of encounter and fellowship with God on earth, will never be preserved in this world. It will be restored in the next, however. Continue reading “God, not man, preserves Garden of Eden for eternity”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
Corporate boardroom: Worldly business mentality enters church

Worldly business mentality invades the church

Steven Rasberry
Steven Rasberry

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (BNC) Guest Editorial by Steven Rasberry — As the church, we should seek to adhere to the inspired pattern. We often, and rightly so, go to great lengths to keep our worship in spirit and in truth. But as any well trained solder is trained to know, we need to guard our flanks and not allow the enemy unhindered access. Even if we have the worship down pat, if we are off on our heart and mindset, we can become just as lost.

For decades, many congregations, even many that consider themselves conservative and sound, have begun to mix worldly management practices into that which is holy and spiritual. Continue reading “Worldly business mentality invades the church”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
zuckerberg

Giving 99% — a gift larger than Zuckerberg’s

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (BNC) by Tim Hall — First, there was Black Friday, the annual day to kick back from the turkey and head out to the malls to push and shove away all those extra calories. Later, came Cyber Monday, just in case you still had some of your Christmas cash available. Now, we have been presented with Giving Tuesday. I personally received nearly a dozen emails from organizations encouraging me to join in. Continue reading “Giving 99% — a gift larger than Zuckerberg’s”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
mission-of-risk

Embrace the risk: Roberta Edwards suffered for the Cross

(BNC) Editorial by J. Randal Matheny — Roberta Edwards’s senseless murder Oct. 10 in Haiti made national and international news. I didn’t know her personally, but a lot of my friends did. She was a woman of God devoted to her task of caring for children in one of the world’s poorest, most corrupt countries.

The culprits and their motives are, apparently, unknown at this point. But anytime a saint enters the world to serve, risk follows. Ministry means vulnerability, opening oneself to hurt by the very people one seeks to serve. Fear would close off that risk and turn away from the possibility of hurt, but faith pushes one forward, as a light-bearer, into the darkness of ignorance and wrongdoing. Continue reading “Embrace the risk: Roberta Edwards suffered for the Cross”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
singing

Sunday sets the saints’ entire week

(BNC) Editorial by J. Randal Matheny — Sunday is such an important day for one’s life in Christ that preparation and care should be taken for best advantage. That’s the point of the article, published yesterday, “What can you do on Saturday to make Sunday more worshipful? Here are 7 suggestions.”

At the same time, Sunday, as the Lord’s Day and first day of the week, provides Christians with the opportunity to lock in spiritual perspectives and concrete intentions that honor God’s eternal purpose. Continue reading “Sunday sets the saints’ entire week”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
torn-bible

Man’s part in salvation: ‘Loosers’ attempt systematic dismemberment of Bible teaching

(BNC Editorial) — As a poster of Bible verses, comments, and quick Bible truths, your editor came across a verse recently that stood out in a way that he’d not seen before. Second Thessalonians 2.13 proclaims both God’s part and man’s in salvation. Continue reading “Man’s part in salvation: ‘Loosers’ attempt systematic dismemberment of Bible teaching”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
cultures

Culture named word of the year at Merriam-Webster. And in the brotherhood?

The Merriam-Webster people, publishers of the English dictionary, have named the word “culture” as their 2014 word of the year.

The company based its pick on significant increases in searches from last year on Merriam-Webster.com, along with spikes of concentrated interest due to media attention where the word was used.

“Culture” might well be considered a prime candidate for the word of the year in the brotherhood as well, after a high-profile YouTube defense of women preachers used it to undermine the biblical prohibition. The video brings to a point the arguments made for decades that culture neuters biblical commandments.

If it belongs to culture, it means it’s not relevant for all times and places. Continue reading “Culture named word of the year at Merriam-Webster. And in the brotherhood?”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us
junk-car-flowers

Flowers of grace in the midst of the mess

SÃO JOSÉ DOS CAMPOS, Brazil (BNC) — Over the past two months, the team of Forthright / GoSpeak has been transferring most of its websites to a new hosting service. The process has not been without bumps. Continue reading “Flowers of grace in the midst of the mess”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Editorial: We find strength in fellowship of suffering

The news coming out of Ukraine, Nigeria, and other countries where Christians are suffering moves the brotherhood to prayer and assistance. It is comforting to know that our “brothers and sisters throughout the world are enduring the same kinds of suffering” 1Pt 5.9 NET. Continue reading “Editorial: We find strength in fellowship of suffering”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Editorial: The pattern of apostolic teaching provides for every need

(BNc) Editorial by J. Randal Matheny — To share stories about God working in peoples’ lives gives us great pleasure. We all need encouragement, and not a few are finding it in the reports published here on BNc. The website has caught the attention of many good saints and congregations.

Such reports encourage all the more when they highlight God’s work in and through his little ones, humble saints who rarely make headlines. They are evidence of the “one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all” Ep 4.6 NET. Indeed, he is powerful and gracious to choose a people whose only merit is a desire for his presence and a dependence upon the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. Continue reading “Editorial: The pattern of apostolic teaching provides for every need”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

A prayer, a perspective and an appeal

james-randal-2014-novAs Spring wobbles uncertainly to arrive in the Northern Hemisphere and Autumn marches in the Southern, we’d like to take a moment here at BNc to say that we appreciate the help and prayers of our readers.

Just as the seasons go different directions north and south, so our readers are spread around the globe as well. That is as it should be, and we hope to see both coverage and readership grow from all four corners.

A prayer

The brotherhood in the US and, as a result, in many other countries faces a challenging moment. Twisted doctrines fly from congregation to congregation. Denominational and postmodern influences flow freely among us. The lines grow blurred.

We seek to serve a brotherhood that sets Scripture as its infallible and only guide, that finds in the New Testament its pattern for work and worship, and that depends upon the power of God’s Spirit to perform its task in the world, as it follows the steps of the Savior.

So our stories also seek to highlight those congregations and saints who follow those convictions, just as our own Convictions page states.

To that end, we covet your prayers. It’s an arduous task, one for which we’re all too aware of our inadequacies.

A perspective

At times, to remind ourselves of the dangers of the directions we do not wish to follow, we report on tendencies on the fringes, or beyond, the ranks of the faithful. It is not our desire to be harsh or cruel, but neither will we pretend nothing is amiss among us.

No journalism, secular or religious, is neutral as far as values, and those who pretend it is either are self-deceived or have hidden agendas. That does not mean that journalism cannot be objective, but the convictions and worldview of the reporters and editors become evident both by the choice of what they cover and how they cover it.

An appeal

So, finally, here’s the appeal: As an all volunteer staff, we need, besides your prayers, your input. Tell us what you like in terms of presentation, visuals, and information. Provide us with tips and, even better, complete reports and stories (not advertisements!).

Our editors and correspondents are spread out over several continents and countless countries. But they are up to their elbows in their own ministries and efforts. Their time is short.

Nobody earns a living and nobody gets paid for working with BNc. It would be good if one or two could devote themselves full-time to this effort. We don’t, however, see that happening any time soon.

So please give us a hand. Gather up the details, write it up, take a photo, and send it to us. We’ll do the editing, but we can’t fabricate the facts.

A heads-up

We also will be tinkering now and again with the website. Right now, we’re experimenting with some options for themes, or how the site is presented visually. If something doesn’t work for you, let us know. If something strikes your fancy, we’d also like to hear about it. Your feedback is our oxygen.

The seasons will continue to turn, until the Lord Jesus puts a stop to the cycles to usher in an eternal stasis of joy and renewal. Until then, we are grateful to be a part of the ebb and flow of his kingdom on the ground, among the nations, where, eventually, the Way will lead into the celestial gates upon which we have set our hope.

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Gun-control or self-control? ‘More laws may not have the intended effect’

gun-controlNASHVILLE, Tenn. (BNc) by Hugh Fulford — People are up in arms over guns. The rash of shootings and mass killings in America has made gun control a hot button issue.

The US president has appointed a special commission headed by Vice-President Joe Biden to allegedly look into the situation from all angles, with input from a wide range of constituents representing different interests and opinions about the matter. Personally, I am not sure just why the president has appointed the commission since all indicators point to his having already made up his mind as to which side of the question he intends to come down on. Continue reading “Gun-control or self-control? ‘More laws may not have the intended effect’”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Will ours become a cut-flower civilization?

After-birth abortion(BNc) by Chuck Webster — Earlier this year The Telegraph, a British newspaper, published an article with this title: “Killing babies no different from abortion, experts say.”

The author, Stephen Adams, comments on an article published in the Journal of Medical Ethics that suggested newborn babies are not “actual persons” and do not have a “moral right to life.” The journal article itself was entitled, “After-birth abortion: Why should the baby live?” Continue reading “Will ours become a cut-flower civilization?”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

A better reason to sign up to BNc

SubscribeShort version: Please sign up to the subscription list at right; we changed services after the old one failed.

So we encourage you to sign up to the new list even if you were a subscriber before.*

An advantage of the new email subscriptions is that you can get the stories immediately as they are published, if you so desire. On sign-up, you have the option of immediate, daily, or weekly emails. Every email contains a link to manage or cancel your subscription. Continue reading “A better reason to sign up to BNc”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Peace on Earth

BNc editor

Did you hear about the guy who attacked a woman at the Thanksgiving Day dinner table? She was sitting in the chair he wanted, so he attacked her with a foot-long butcher knife.

Did you hear about the 20 customers hurt in Los Angeles on Black Friday? A woman pepper sprayed fellow shoppers in order to get a discounted video game player.

Did you hear about the man in California who was shot when two armed men tried to steal the things he and his family had purchased? He is in critical condition, but, thankfully, expected to survive the incident. Continue reading “Peace on Earth”

Barbara has been involved in missions for over 25 years, both in the field and in publishing.

Beware of hoaxes about the Bible

Bible hoaxesRAPID CITY, S.D. (BNc) –– Brother Nathan A. Barton, an environmental and minerals engineer, warns us of the danger of passing on untrue claims about the Bible in the following article.

Recently, a correspondent of mine e-mailed me an article I’ve seen on occasion for the past 40 years.

The article claimed that NASA scientists at Goddard Space Flight Center, while calculating orbits of planets and satellites, had “proven” that the long day of Joshua (Joshua 10, when God made the sun stand still) and the reversal of the sun’s motion for Hezekiah (2 Kings 20) had occurred, because it was necessary for NASA to take those events into consideration in doing orbital calculations. Continue reading “Beware of hoaxes about the Bible”

Roy Davison devotes himself to the gospel in Belgium, as well as being a part-time translator. He is the creator of the Old Paths websites (http://oldpaths.com).

Minister impressed with churches’ disaster response

BNc Commentary
by John T. Polk II

churches of ChristPaul said: “But as you abound in everything –- in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all diligence, and in your love for us –- see that you abound in this grace also. I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:7-9 NKJV).

The churches of Christ are noted for standing for the faith, speaking the truth in love, and loving Jesus Christ. But while the Neo-Sectarians among us are carving the brotherhood apart and stabbing brethren in the back at a distance, the boo-birds have decried how the churches of Christ aren’t doing anything and don’t know how to love one another. Continue reading “Minister impressed with churches’ disaster response”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Moving forward in 2011

The editors and staff of BrotherhoodNews.com thank you for your support over the last year. We’re nearing the end of our third year since our official launch, and on that date we’ll make more specific comments and reflections about the work of BNc. Suffice it to say now, however, that we look forward to making even greater progress in 2011 and pray God’s blessing on this service that understands news of the saints as a powerful motivation for faithfulness and perseverance.

As a service of Forthright Press and GoSpeak, we’ve added our prayer for you in the new year at the former site, which you can read at this link. Continue reading “Moving forward in 2011”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Effects of change within the church

One Man’s Story: Spiritual and Emotional Effects of Change Within the Church

Special editorial for BNc, by Daron Hoggatt

“And he said to them: ‘You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions!’” Mark 7:9

There are many things going on in the church of Christ today. Many things have been changing now for several years. When looking back on the history of the church we can see that when changes began to occur, the number of members also began to change. The number of people, attending the church of Christ started declining and has continued to decline ever since.

This opens up a few questions. Did the changes cause this decline? Were the changes right or wrong? How do we address the changes? These are questions we need to ask ourselves and then research for ourselves. Continue reading “Effects of change within the church”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

Chaplain in Afghanistan ponders ramp ceremony

By Capt. Anthony Holloway, Family Life Chaplain

In a recent sermon, a fellow officer delivered a message that made me sit back and think. Maj. Jerry Sayre said that one can tell a great deal about a person by looking at the things that bother him. In other words, those things that make us uncomfortable say a great deal about us. I find Maj. Sayre’s statement to be quite profound.

While conducting my first ramp ceremony, I found myself ill-prepared for the wave of emotion that swept over me. “Amazing Grace” played on the bagpipes as the fallen soldiers were slowly carried past a solemn line of their comrades. Continue reading “Chaplain in Afghanistan ponders ramp ceremony”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us