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from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 32
by: Rushin Mennonite
For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. — Romans 13:4a
It all started with the alarm ringing at 3:30 in the morning. I knew I had a full day ahead of me. I had farm chores to do in the morning and then an appointment with my young deaf son’s audiologist about two hours away. I knew time would be tight to make it to our appointment on time.
from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 31
by: Need Food
Our family operates a salsa and jam manufacturing business. We buy products in large quantities to use in our cooking and processing. Many of these products such as peaches and tomatoes come in metal gallon cans.
An inspector from the State Department of Agriculture regularly comes by to check on our operation. One morning last summer, he arrived just as we were finishing the first batch of 180 cases of product. During his inspection he discovered fruit flies in our warehouse.
from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 30
by: Need Food
Three of us brethren were on a business trip away from home. On Friday evening we needed a place to eat. A large selection of restaurants and food places on one street invited us in. Which one should we choose?
We pulled in at one restaurant, but the parking lot was full and a long line of people stood waiting to be served. We decided to move on and settled on Applebee’s. None of us had eaten at that one before and we thought it worthy of a taste test.
from Volume 1, April 2016, page # 30
The story goes that President Calvin Coolidge went to church one Sunday while his wife remained at home. After he returned home from the service, his wife asked, “What did the preacher preach about?”
“Sin,” the President replied.
Wishing to enlarge on the conversation, his wife asked, “Well, what did he say about sin?”
“He was against it,” was the only answer his wife got out of him.
This is common in many pulpits. Preachers can preach against sin and people know they are against it. But it is all couched in language that does not condemn specific sins. It is when someone begins to name specific sins that the fur flies. This is the practical side where Anabaptist Voice wishes to continue the Anabaptist practice of putting the gospel in street clothes.
It is our hope to make “The Practical Side” a recurring column; highlighting real life situations that will spark many responses and generate material for future articles.
from Volume 1, April 2016, page # 29
by James G Landis
While seeking to write out the “Plow Boy Version” of the passage from I John (pg. 20), I encountered the word, “propitiation” in the KJV. This word presented several challenges. What did the word mean? How could I put it in simple language that everyone would understand?
I studied several different translations and wrote down a definition that I thought sounded pretty good. Jesus is the One who took God’s wrath against our sins upon himself and brought us into fellowship with God.
In the editing process, Brother Mike Atnip called my definition into question. He said, “We could have a long discussion about propitiation, but your definition is a general Protestant definition.” Brother Mike then gave a shorter and simpler definition that satisfied me better than the first one. Jesus is the one sacrifice that brought us peace with God.
This example illustrates one of the best methods of real Bible study. Take a passage of Scripture. Write out your own Plow Boy Version of the passage as you understand it. Then get together with another friend who has written out his own interpretation of the same passage. Compare your writing and where you differ. You may have several friends together, but keep the group small, no more than four or five.
As I understand it, it was out of this very kind of Bible study that the Anabaptist movement was born. Ulrich Zwingli, Felix Manz, Conrad Grebel and a few others met regularly together to study the New Testament in the original language. It was a firm desire to understand the true meaning of the Scripture that convicted them and impelled them to put it into practice.
from Volume 1, April 2016, page # 28
by Frank Reed
The future for the Anabaptist community is linked to Scripture. Both the Mennonite and Brethren churches were birthed out of the Scripture. Our forefathers read and studied the Bible and took it at face value. They honored and obeyed the Scripture. Many of them memorized much of the Bible. In fact the Brethren said, “The New Testament is our only creed.”
The Bible was the prominent factor in both private life in the home and in the corporate life of the church. If the Anabaptist community is to continue to be a spiritual expression of Scripture, it must be the same today. Read more
from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 27
by James G. Landis
Anabaptist Voice does not claim to be a scholarly paper. Neither do we claim to be competent translators that can speak with authority on Bible meanings based on a knowledge of Hebrew and Greek.
However, we do believe that those Anabaptists who want to know the truth can understand the truth of the Word. Anabaptist Voice affirms that the Scripture is inspired and that it has the authority to govern the life of the believer.
Since Anabaptist Voice is dedicated to furthering the truth of the Scripture for those of simple faith, we will always attempt to use a simple rendering of the Scripture. This is not dependent on one translation or the other. We will always seek to use a simple, straight-forward rendering of a Scripture without designating it as being from one version or another. It may even be in the writer’s own words. It is the meaning of the passage that we seek to convey.
Hence, writers will not attach a version to any quotation of Scripture, but give only the chapter and verse where it may be found. And if any error be found in our rendering by diligent brethren, we urge anyone to write us and instruct us in the way of God more perfectly.
This policy for Anabaptist Voice does not attempt to say what translation or version is best for your church. We are not saying that your congregation should conduct its worship services in English, French, German, Spanish, Swahili or any other language. That choice and the version or versions you use is a local decision with which we have no argument.
from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 26
by James G. Landis
The United States and Canada claim that because you are a citizen or a subject, a young person who turns 18 has an obligation to “serve your country.” And this usually means fighting in the army or an attached part of the military. In wartime, trying to evade this so-called service is a very serious crime.
Some of us who are older, well remember the posters with a stern-faced Uncle Sam in a blue coat pointing a bony finger at you. The caption read, “Uncle Sam wants you.” The claim to two to four years of your life in service and a willingness to die for your country has been somewhat blurred by the technology of warfare and the volunteer armies. But the underlying claim to your money and your life is still present.
from Issue #1, April 2016, page # 25
by Kendall Myers
For judgment I have come into the world, that those who do not see may see. — John 9:39.
A picture that I’ve posted on the wall behind my desk at school reminds me of the profound value of literacy. The black and white sketch depicts a woman that I would guess to be in her sixties bent over a booklet, tracing its lines carefully with her finger. Every line on her face speaks to the intensity of her desire to make out the meaning of the text on the page before her. In my mind, she is someone who has just been taught the rudimentary elements of reading, probably for the purpose of reading the Scriptures. For her entire life, a transparent yet impenetrable space has existed between her eyes and words on a page and now, though it is hard work, her face shows the joy of being able to see the pictures that emerge as she pieces together the textual puzzle.